Automatic Merchandiser offers a compendium of established players' resources.
Vending and coffee service operators can feel confident about the technical and parts support available for most coffee service equipment. The established equipment manufacturers have developed a variety of aftermarket support resources, according to a recent Automatic Merchandiser survey.
In the interest of assisting operators with a quick reference guide, Automatic Merchandiser has compiled a reference of what support resources the established coffee brewer suppliers offer. The manufacturers are listed in alphabetical order.
Most of the established coffee equipment manufacturers offer training at their own facility as well as field training. Most have authorized service centers and offer toll-free phone support, along with website support for parts orders.
The Internet has provided equipment manufacturers a new tool to help address service issues. Some manufacturers' websites allow a customer to e-mail problems via interactive websites.
Aftermarket parts catalogs have been available on websites for several years now, allowing operators to place orders at their convenience.
Websites also offer trouble shooting tips, and help operators locate the closest authorized service center.
In addition, many service manuals are easily available via the Internet.
Cafection Enterprises Inc. offers telephone support 24 hours a day, seven days a week to all customers who have technical questions. Katy Ampleman, sales and marketing director, said 99 percent of the technical issues can be addressed over the phone. Parts orders are also taken over the phone, Ampleman said.
Operator customers of Cafection Enterprises Inc. typically receive technical training as part of their three-day training program at the company's factory in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. There is no charge for this training.
Saeco USA offers support for operators. "We provide initial tech support and suggest that they complete our training course-specific to the equipment models they have. In addition to our regional service centers, we also have a third-party company with a national network of service providers we can refer them to," said Katie McCullough, marketing associate.
Saeco USA has two technical specialists available to talk to people about any problems with commercial issues, added Havilah Ross, marketing manager. In addition, there is a dedicated customer service rep.
Saeco's training is free of charge, whether on-site or in the field. Saeco covers all expenses for on-site training, McCullough noted. Field assistance is provided by contacting the company's commercial sales department and making an appointment.
Bloomfield offers training on a request basis, according to Bill Teller, vice president of sales and marketing.
There is a team of nine specialists available for both sales and service training, Teller said, and there is no charge for it. He said the company also offers service manuals on CDs, which operators can request from the company, and via its Internet website.
Like most established equipment manufacturers, Bloomfield has a nationwide network of authorized repair centers.
The training support offered by the manufacturer can be done on-site at the manufacturing facility or at the operator location. Some manufacturers, like Bunn, offer
Web classes as well. "Scheduled classes are held at our New Jersey, California and Illinois facilities.
Web-based training is available at www.bunnomatic.com/pages/service/serv_location.html," said John Edie, vice president of technical services at Bunn.
The Bunn website provides online schematics to help find the data plate on a machine. It also explains the components on the data plate.
Some manufacturers offer extensive CD and/or DVD training.
Flavia Beverage Solutions offers an interactive CD that operators can use on-site with their customers for training and troubleshooting, said Karen Adolf, marketing manager.
"VE Global Solutions has produced several DVDs and CDs covering the repair and maintenance of its equipment. In addition, VE has produced a series of quick reference guides to assist users in the cleaning and filling of its equipment, along with a trouble-shooting guide," said Brent Garson, CEO of VE Global Solutions.
Crane Merchandising Systems offers CD and DVD training, noted Carlos Nunez, manager of global parts sales and service. "We also have CD training guides available for our most popular equipment and are in the process of developing DVD guides," he noted.
Newco Enterprises offers online services that include trouble-shooting and advice on what tools the service technician should have with them
at all times. A question and answer forum is also under construction to help operators service their OCS equipment on their own.
Dedicated aftermarket suppliers such as Vendors Exchange International Inc., D & S Vending Inc. and Holiday House Distributing carry parts, product displays and water filters as well as assistance with general instillation of equipment and filters.
Most aftermarket specialists offer online ordering.