by Tim Holmberg, DEMI Equipment
As I sit here writing about my experiences and thoughts during these last few remaining days — as we say goodbye to 2017 and hello 2018 — I wonder what everyone thought about 2017. Was it all we had imagined it would be, expected, or hoped for?
I’m guessing it was filled with some rather mixed feelings and emotions waiting to see how our newly elected president would tackle the DC political scene and what a businessman of his scale would bring to the equation of boosting the economy out of its mundane slump. The voters spoke and elected their candidate from the “outside”, pretty much how our Founding Fathers had envisioned it to be best for this great nation, so many years ago. I am often amazed how those founding members were so intuitive to design such a quality combination of ideals and laws that are still so valuable today. Kind of like a well-built piece of equipment — and with that being said, I will share briefly some of what I feel are rather similar thoughts and perspectives to the title of this article:
- Will the aggregate processing equipment make any large earth shattering changes for the 2018 market or will everyone manufacturing keep relying on their “bread and butter” items?
I’m thinking 2018 may stay relatively on par with 2017, as we are just exiting Con-Expo 2017 and most manufacturing providers gear up their new releases for that event — often exhausting R&D budgets — until they see some return on their invested time and energy. However with outside influences and demanding civil projects still looming, everyone bidding these types of projects will be looking to find that unique machine that will boost their productivity while paying for its lion share of the expense. That being the case, it quickly pushes manufacturing and new model equipment design and growth back into high gear.
- The circle of life and life events are other amazing motivators that often effect whether new model equipment releases are being developed regularly. Each year leaders in the industry move closer to their ultimate goal of retirement while making room for the younger up and coming ambitious individual eagerly trying to make a name or difference among his/her peers.
- New start-up manufacturing groups: Yes, they are always full of product development energy each and every year. These aggressive lean and hungry manufacturers are continually seeking, researching, and swiftly designing new products to offer out into the market place so they can rapidly progress to their end goals of becoming complete and whole to their dealer networks and direct customers.
This type of small business industry is what typically accelerates or ignites the larger fully established manufacturers to keep pace in the PD field as well as keep the big guys’ pricing affordable. The little guy also tends to offer up some of the best customer service since they are doing everything it takes in a good way to stand out in the industry.
The flip side of all of this new product campaigning and development in the industry is to have a declining economy or simply a lack of interest in what the manufacturer thought would have made a much bigger impact. A one-two combination punch of these deflating experiences can sometimes really play havoc with the product development teams of organizations leaving them in a downward spiral and ultimately dissolving — which is what happens if we miscalculate all these factors.
Most manufacturers are banking on the fact that equipment 10 years and older are coming to the end of their life cycle of operation and will then be sold off and new machines acquired. But this is not always the case — especially if the current equipment is of solid quality and their features still remain useful in maintaining productivity.
Then there is the skeptic who is always fearful of all new untested models not being fully proven to be tried and true. So, until someone else has debugged the new design — or deemed it worthy to the marketplace — most would-be buyers hold out.
I feel for these people on both sides — as I am just like the majority (on both sides of this topic) — running all these heightened thoughts through my mind on a daily basis. I’m guessing most of my readers can relate in some way or another, too.
It has been my experience for some time now as an equipment manufacturer, that you automatically fall into becoming an educated consumer so when you are good at both parts you have this automatic challenge within that helps when it comes to validating or designing something new to the market as well as knowing when the timing is just right for the best results. I will often encourage potential customers to do their shopping and comparable researching in order to learn what this new equipment’s behind-the-scenes reason for coming to market was and then to also understand if it will make enough of a difference by acquiring it — if you will become better for it. If all those answers are “yes”, then do the deal without regret or further hesitation and feel good you’re doing your part to keep a manufacturer in business for generations to come.
Please, if you enjoy these random aggregate and quarrying equipment based subjects, tune back in for more topics to come. Send me a subject or topic you would like brought to light and any associated questions you would like to have discussed and I will gladly provide my best answer based upon my specific point of view and personal experience.
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Tim Holmberg, 2915 Idea Ave., Aberdeen, SD 57401