STRAIGHT TALK ABOUT TECHNOLOGY: MANAGING COST & COMPLEXITY
When we talk with contractors and aggregates producers about construction technology, two questions are always top of mind. How much will it cost? And how hard will it be to use? We posed those questions to a couple of our technology experts—Jason Hurdis and Lonnie Fritz. Here’s their take on the topics.
It’s all about getting comfortable
According to Jason and Lonnie, concerns about cost and complexity often stem from fear of the unknown. Many equipment owners are satisfied with the results they’re already achieving, so they’re reluctant to try new things—especially things that cost money and disrupt the status quo. We get that. But we also believe that no matter how well your equipment is performing today, you can reach all-new levels of safety, productivity and profitability with technology. The key is getting comfortable with change.
How do you do that?
- Remember—it’s an investment. It’s normal to feel anxious about upfront costs. Just make sure you’re considering all the benefits, too. Technology will help you do higher quality work—faster—with less fuel, rework, materials and labor. You’ll enhance safety, increase utilization, optimize uptime, extend component life, preserve warranty hours, attract top talent and more. In short, you’ll build a stronger, more competitive business. And that’s a smart investment.
- Do your homework. The more you know about technology, the less intimidating it is. So spend some time on the web. Attend a workshop. Visit a trade show. Talk to your Cat® Request a demo. Submit a question to Ask An Expert at catallday.com. There’s plenty of information out there; make an effort to find it.
- Start small. Eat the elephant one bite at a time. Activate Cat LINK on some of your equipment or assets and use the basic data. Add Cat PAYLOAD to just one loading tool and measure the impact on production. Put Cat DETECT on a single wheel loader and see what happens to safety and productivity. Even small changes can deliver big gains. You just need to get started.
- Rent first. Equipment rental is a great way to overcome fear of technology. Find a rental machine that’s equipped with features you’d like to try. Get trained and put the unit to work on your site. You’ll be able to measure the benefits in your own application with your own operators—before you commit to ownership.
- Go all-in on training. The biggest mistake equipment owners make when buying new technology is short-changing the training effort. Take the time to get everyone up to speed on features, capabilities and processes. Include plenty of hands-on time, especially for operators. And don’t try to do the training yourself. Leave it to the professionals.
There’s a lot to consider when evaluating an investment in construction technology. If you’re anxious about things like cost and complexity, talk to your Cat dealer. We’ll do our best to help you choose the right technology, get comfortable with it and manage a successful change.