Kevin Amory, VP of JSmith Civil, an Under 40 in Construction Equipment winner (owner Jeremy Smith), discussed the company’s relationship with their North Carolina Caterpillar dealer, Gregory Poole. According to Amory, the team still completes almost every machine repair in-house. However, with JSmith Civil being a fast-growing company, the group occasionally outsources machine repair that requires special tooling.
“We might need [the tool] once every three years and it’s not worth investing $20,000 in that tool,” Amory says. “The dealer can do it instead, and we can use our resources on things that we need. Maybe we cover more pieces, and the specialized repairs, we put with the dealer.”
JSmith also orders parts, oil, and other machine components from the dealer as needed.
How JSmith Civil uses telematics as its fleet grows.
“Covid has unfortunately reduced supply of some items, especially if they are not used or needed a lot,” Amory says. “But that’s across the board with every manufacturer and every dealer. We’ve worked with other dealers that say a part is going to be [in our hands] ‘by this Friday’ and it ends up being the following Friday.
"Too often if a machine were to break down, especially with all the pieces we have under warranty, you might have 15 people just standing there. So it's a high priority to get that machine back up. But they’ve always stocked what they can, and what people need.”
Gregory Poole also provides JSmith with frequent updates on parts availability and delivery. The team typically orders new parts via phone, Amory says.
“We have to get this equipment up and moving so it pays for itself,” Amory says. “They can tell us right away if [a part] is in stock or it’s going to be an order item, and we can adjust accordingly. Having real-time information and being informed of when the parts are coming is very important.”
Amory says the team has a great working relationship with not just the salesmen at Gregory Poole, but the service department as well.
“Their customer service representative really takes good care of us,” he says. "They're an important part of JSmtih's team, and they understand we rely on them to meet our needs. They do a great job—even as busy as the economy is—making us a priority."