Hewden offers ‘next day’ promise on top 30 products
By Murray Pollok28 March 2013
UK rental company Hewden is offering guaranteed next day deliveries of its 30 most popular products in an initiative aimed at expanding its business among SME and regional customers.
Under the guarantee, Hewden will deliver any of the 30 products before midday the next day for equipment ordered in the morning and before 5.00pm next day for orders placed between 12.00pm and 5.00pm. If it misses the deadline Hewden will pay the customer £100.
The ‘core fleet’ - comprising excavators, telehandlers, dumpers rollers, scissor lifts and booms – represent around 10000 of Hewden’s total 25000 unit fleet.
Jeff Schofield, Hewden’s marketing director, told IRN that the service was given a ‘soft’ roll-out in February, with 2000 deliveries made under the programme and just 1% failing to meet the deadline.
“We were really pleased with the results in February”, he says, “and that gave us the confidence to go public with the guarantee. It’s having a really positive impact on the business. We’re seeing the customer base growing, fleet utilisation increasing, and revenues growing as well”.
Hewden has traditionally been strong among national contractors, but it believes the new offering – simplifying its offering by focusing on the most important and popular products - will appeal in particular to small and medium sized companies and regional players.
“The real target here is the SME and regionals”, said Mr Schofield.
The initiative has been made possible by investment in the company’s IT systems. A new, company-wide ERP system went live last year, giving complete visibility of assets, and the transport fleet is being organised at the company’s seven hub depots using the Paragon transport planning software, operating in conjunction with the Masternaut asset tracking system.
Hewden has also invested in its core fleet to meet the guarantee, with £4 million expenditure this year including the first growth CapEx for four years. The 30 products in the fleet represent a sizeable portion of its business, but the company said it may expand the ‘core’ to include other products, with accommodation products possibly next on the list to be included.
Products in the core fleet include excavators in the 1.5, 3, 5, 8, 13 and 20 t sizes; 7, 9, 14 and 17 m telehandlers, 3, 6 and 9 t dumpers, 800 and 1200 mm wide rollers, 19, 26 and 32 ft scissors and 34, 45 and 60 ft articulating booms. Also included are backhoe loaders, diesel scissor lifts and telescopic booms.