ASK THE EXPERT: LASSE HANBERG, SUPPORT MANAGER @ SITECH DENMARK
Lasse Hanberg is the Support Manager at SITECH Danmark A/S, an authorized Trimble distributor supplying equipment and machines to the construction industry in Denmark. He has been with the company for nearly 6 years and in his role, he is responsible for after-sales support - a valuable service aimed at keeping its customers' machines up and running.
SITECH Danmark A/S pride itself on offering customers a fully connected construction workflow. It’s unique proposition offers machine control such as Trimble Earthworks Grade Control Platform and Trimble Siteworks Positioning Systems bundled with the remote design transfer solution, Trimble WorksManager, to connect those machines to the office and vice versa in real-time.
We talked to Lasse about how Trimble WorksManager is used to enhance its support offering and the benefits that his customers have seen.
How do you use Trimble WorksManager in-house to support your customers?
“We use WorksManager for troubleshooting. It provides remote access to the machine. We’re also able to remotely view the operators machine control or surveying screen, and access data in the device to see what’s going on there. We can see login information, sensor software versions, firmware versions, what project designs are loaded etc. at our fingertips to react quickly to get the machine up and running again.
Our customers run the projects themselves but we can troubleshoot hardware issues for our service team before they have to go onsite by accessing the software remotely. Our service team then takes over if an engineer needs to be sent onsite but typically, in around 90% of cases, we’re able to solve the problem remotely. To date this year, there have been 185 support tickets raised and only 15 of these have had to go to the service department. On occasions we have customers that don’t have the internet connectivity, and then the chances of having to visit the jobsite is quite a lot bigger.
The remote view of the operators screen is a big advantage. It means that the operators don’t have to try to explain the issue over the phone, when they might not feel so comfortable doing so. They may have difficulties going through the menus and describing the error messages but they don’t need to. They’re really happy that we can just log on to the machine and see it for ourselves.”
How has your work been affected since the start of the Covid pandemic?
“Well, we haven’t really been affected to be honest. Our customers seem to be very busy so support is the same. Of course, we’ve been working from home but since everything we do is online, it doesn’t matter that much.
Actually, Trimble WorksManager helps in the current situation because it replaces many of the trips to the jobsite needed to upload designs to machines. Having the system in place has meant that our customers haven’t had to adjust their way of working for the pandemic.”
Do your customers use Trimble WorksManager too?
“Denmark was a very early adopter of WorksManager, or its predecessor TCC, because the Scandinavian market is quite advanced. Actually, Europe is advanced but Scandinavia in particular because the manpower is so expensive and so whatever you can do to optimize that and keep costs down is quite welcome. For a long time, we have been selling Trimble WorksManager with every sale so basically, every customer is online with these tools. We don’t sell machines that aren’t connected to WorksManager, it just doesn’t happen. It’s part of a bundle because, in Denmark, this connectivity is expected.
We have 170 customers on WorksManager today and that probably totals 1600 devices in the field that we support. We set it up for them, and then we invite them to join so that they can run their projects through it. We train them on webinars, newsletters, videos and stuff like that.”
What are the benefits of Trimble WorksManager for your customers?
“All the big customers, like Per Aarsleff A/S with over 187 devices, are proactively using WorksManager and are very happy with it.
It’s not just a file transfer to and from the machine, it gives them the ability to also monitor the machines. They can see where they are so they don’t have to ring around trying to find the machine, they can see it remotely. And they can streamline their projects. They can make sure that the correct designs go to the correct machines and monitor that the machines are running on the latest revision. This minimizes errors and re-work. Both of these are a time saver for sure.
Particularly in the current climate, our big customers, with hundreds of machines in the field, are using it to reduce travel time. They have the visibility remotely and time in the car is just too expensive.”
How can small contractors benefit from Trimble WorksManager?
“Many of our smaller customers are actually using 3rd party companies to get the designs to the machines. We’re trying to show them how intuitive WorksManager is; How intelligent it actually is, how easy it is to get data to the machines, how easy it is to make sure machines are working on the correct designs and to get designs to multiple machines with different systems on it.
They are starting to realise that the connected workflow offers more value to customers than simply comparing the cost of the systems and that they could bring this management back in-house. We get the system set up for them so it’s as easy as possible to start using and they can invite as many users as they want.
In the same bundle, we also include our SITECH Academy which provides training to more than 200 people a year, so that they can get the most out of the solution.”
How does Trimble WorksManager improve machine uptime?
“It gives them full transparency of what is going on on their site. They can monitor the machines without having to go out to each machine, they can just check on their laptop. They can see how many machines are on the site, are some down for maintenance, how long has it been down.
It’s much easier to move machines from site to site. Before, if you moved a machine, you’d have to get hold of the surveyor and ask him to plan the machine arrival and be ready to upload the correct designs. With WorksManager, as soon as the machine moves into the project boundary, it recognizes what project it's on and downloads all the data to the machine automatically, without any manual intervention. No advanced warning is needed at all, and the machine never sits idle.”
If you would like to learn more about Trimble WorksManager and the connected construction workflow, visit constructionsoftware.trimble.com/products/worksmanager