Very soon, 2015 will be here. And with the start of a new business year there are some important questions to be answered such as 'can the benefits of the new spray equipment be financially quantified?'
Will sales increase from:
- add-on sales to customers;
- acquisition of new customers, or
- ability to raise prices?
Will expenses be reduced by:
- a decrease of product (i.e., chemical) or product delivery cost;
- a decrease of service time;
- an increase of technician productivity; or
- reduced downtime?
Consider all implementation costs and issues associated with the spray equipment. Some of these items are obvious; some are not.
- What’s the warranty, and what does it cover?
- Are replacement and repair parts readily available, and what’s the cost?
- How long will it take to receive repair parts (i.e., how long will the equipment be down?)
- Can service be performed in-house, or must the unit be serviced by others?
- What’s the expected reliability given normal operating conditions of temperature extremes, vigorous use, a bouncing vehicle, etc.
- Will there be installation costs?
- Are there any on-going vendor support, subscription or maintenance fees?
- What’s the expected life of the equipment?
- Will one technician or all technicians be trained?
- How much training is required?
- Who will provide the training, and where will it be conducted?
- Can technicians troubleshoot problems with the equipment?
- Is there enough space on the vehicle to store or install the equipment?
- How will the equipment be packed and secured to prevent damage and theft?
- Will additional documentation – such as material safety data sheets (MSDS), Occupational Safety and Heath Administration ( OSHA) information, etc. – be required on the truck?
If the costs involved in the product are significant, consider asking the vendor for references of other companies using the equipment. Obviously, you’ll only get the names of satisfied customers, but you might gain valuable insight about the product.