Once kit is sold, it is not the end of the manufacturer or supplier’s responsibilities to the distributor or end-user. This Catering Insight Supplier Service & Support category honours those companies which are investing seriously in after-sales and warranty support, and have delivered a superior service.
Therefore the shortlist is:
First Choice Group
In the last year, First Choice signed a deal to supply the Brita Vivreau ViTap, the latest to join the spares specialist’s wide range of manufacturer parts and products. It also launched a web live chat portal, giving customers instant replies, and a mobile app. The app was created to be an indispensable companion for service companies in the commercial catering sector, giving them the UK’s largest stock of OEM parts in their pocket, including parts and service manuals from industry giants like Rational, MKN and Hobart.
Induced Energy has found the key to its success is supporting its existing customers. Alongside offering a 2 year parts and labour warranty as standard, the manufacturer has a team of engineers available to go to any site in the UK the same or next day. This service dramatically cuts downtime in kitchens and keeps the kitchens running in the rare event the equipment develops a fault. Induced Energy has now also recruited a full time dedicated service engineer who travels around the UK to carry out repairs.
Keith Elkington Transport
Keith Elkington Transport led by Oli Elkington has become the industry’s number one logistics company, being the preferred supplier to more than half of the top catering equipment manufacturers as well as many leading distributors and design houses. With the company entering its 28th year, it goes from strength to strength, offering its customers innovative ways with which to increase service levels to their own clients. Its service levels have allowed many of its customers to offer a nationwide next day service, knowing that their promises will be fulfilled.
Pentland consistently goes above and beyond for customers and provides great commercial refrigeration and catering equipment at competitive prices. Appointing a dealer-focused sales manager this year, the wholesaler launched an updated product guide designed to provide a comprehensive overview of its ranges. Pentland has also now moved from a 5 day standard delivery service to 3 day standard delivery service for the majority of mainland UK. Additionally its Pentland Parts division published a new spares guide including a range of ‘made to measure’ gaskets.
Over the past 12 months Winterhalter has restructured its dealer support teams and invested in recruiting more technicians and sales people to support dealers. It has also embarked on a series of bespoke joint marketing activities to support individual dealers’ aims and aspirations. 70% of the manufacturer’s business development managers’ time is now spent with dealers. Plus it believes its new Total Care initiative represents a revolution in the way service is delivered. The Connected Wash lets foodservice operators, and their service provider, monitor warewashers via the internet.