Cat® Certified Used equipment helps build successful Bizz

Growth has come steadily and organically for Bizz’s Farm, Forestry and Civil Contracting. WesTrac has been there each step of the way, helping Bizz buy and maintain a fleet of used equipment.

Since being founded by Aaron and Alisha Kelland some 10 years ago with a single Cat dozer, Bizz’s Farm, Forestry and Civil Contracting has evolved to now run a fleet of seven Cat dozers and excavators.

The Bombala, NSW-based business predominantly carries out forestry work in the state’s southern region.

The Kellands bought their first piece of used equipment – a Cat D6K Dozer – from WesTrac in 2012 and have continued to build their fleet that way since.

As one of the early adopters of the Cat Certified Used (CCU) program when WesTrac started offering it in 2015, Bizz’s Farm, Forestry and Civil Contracting now purchases nothing but CCU machines when it comes to its Cat fleet.

“The biggest benefits in purchasing these CCU machines are the warranties that come with them and the backup support,” Aaron said.

“We know they’re not just used machines that are being put on a truck and shipped to us, they go to WesTrac for a full check over, any repairs are done and we get the full history of the machine and components.”

WesTrac Sales Representative Robert Wilson, who has worked with Aaron and Alisha since they founded their company, says CCU machines must meet a strict set of criteria before they qualify for the program.

“Caterpillar® gives us a list of requirements that each machine has to meet,” Robert said.

“WesTrac checks machines over to ensure they meet those criteria and that's where the customers see the value because they're not just taking a gamble on an unknown second-hand machine.”

Aaron says the combination of the CCU program, extensive warranty options and the support offered by WesTrac – particularly the dedicated team – mean that if the business encounters a problem, it is resolved quickly and effectively.

“I know that I can ring WesTrac straight away if I have a problem and it's sorted out,” Aaron said.

“Between the Canberra WesTrac branch and the field service technicians, even though we’re fairly remote we get attention as quickly as WesTrac can arrange it.”

The business keeps a range of spares on hand and carries out many of its own service and maintenance requirements.

Aaron remains operational in the business, alongside four other employees, while Alisha looks after all administrative requirements. The pair admit they were nervous in taking the first steps to grow the business, but one of their risk mitigation strategies has been to ensure they utilise the best maintenance and support options available.

That includes WesTrac S.O.S. fluid sampling, which is carried out on all machines at every service.

“It’s another really good way to keep our business on track,” Alisha says. “We just take the samples and send them back in a post bag, then have the results within a day or two.”

And the fluid sampling has paid dividends on several occasion, Aaron explains.

“We were recently alerted to an issue with a final drive on one of the machines and while it’s not critical, it is something we know we have to keep an eye on,” he said.

Because the primary focus of Bizz’s work is in the area of forestry and fire maintenance, equipment is subjected to harsh operating conditions.

According to Robert, one of the keys to the business’ success is its willingness to embrace recommendations that WesTrac puts forward.

“Cat equipment is designed to work in rugged conditions, but different environments can lead to different service and maintenance requirements,” Robert said.

“Aaron and Alisha often take on our recommendations which includes signing up for FitFleet Customer Value Agreements. We give them all the service schedule sheets and walk them through what they need to do - they’re very capable and thorough, although they’ll always use WesTrac for the larger services.”

Robert adds that while WesTrac is the Cat dealer for NSW, ACT and WA, their CCU equipment is available to anyone in Australia.

“We supply equipment to customers all over the country and maintain ongoing relationships with them, but their warranties will be honoured by any Cat dealer,” he explained.

“Likewise, WesTrac can look after operators who may have acquired their equipment through a CCU program from another dealer. That’s important for contractors that may work across borders and won’t necessarily know where they might end up working next, giving them the confidence that everything is done in accordance with the same Caterpillar standards.”

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