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KOR building towards the future

The cornerstone of the KOR vision is to make it easier for its customers, which has  led to the establishment of a new major facility in Dandenong, Victoria. 

Chief Executive Officer David Gurrie tells The Australian Pipeliner that over the past 18 months he has been with KOR, he has been focused on identifying opportunities to improve operations and customer outcomes. 

“Dandenong was a facility we identified to become the cornerstone for pre-delivery, warehousing, assembly, service and engineering operations.  It needed to be self-sufficient, staffed with trained KOR staff personnel and fitted with suitable equipment” he says.

“We analysed our Victorian operations across multiple sites using techniques such as SWOTs, time and motion studies, expenditure analysis, and general capability and capacity reviews.  We came to a quick realisation that we can build a more efficient and capable operation by insourcing and centralisation. This will be able to provide a better quality of service and deliver customer outcomes in a more controlled way. That lead down the path of doing our own major site.”

Gurrie says KOR wanted to centralise operations, employ more trades for servicing, and setup heavy workshops to better support their customers and enable further partnerships.  This led to the development of the Dandenong Engineering and Operations facility.

The facility is on a 8000 square metre site with a 4000 square meter building serviced by 8T cranes.  The site will support a large national warehouse, 10 service and assembly bays, and a fabrication area.  The site will also allow KOR to strenghten its partnership with Schwarze Industries. 

In July 2021, KOR secured an exclusive distribution in Australia and New Zealand for Schwarze Industries, highly acclaimed for its durable sweeper products, and renowned for its innovative design and quality.

Gurrie says by opening the Dandenong facility the company can better support the Schwarze agreement which requires domestic sweeper body installation onto locally procured chassis, supported by engineering and fabrication operations.

“That is how I came into the picture, to rapidly improve our operations and enable this quick expansion to identify and procure a suitable site.  At the same time, we also began developing internal trades capability to perform servicing and introduced mobile servicing.  The challenge has been hiring trades during COVID-19.”

“Our mobile service began in early 2021, with additional mobile service vans under commission.  By the end of March 2022, which is the same time as the commissioning of the Engineering and Operations facility, KOR will have three mobile service vans in operation, with one van operating in NSW. We have plans for further expansion of mobile services and workshops over the next 12-18 months.” 

Gurrie says the goal is to improve customer service using KOR workshops and service vans by providing everything a customer needs, at their doorstep, across Australia, to carry out a service. 

“The service vans give us a capability that we weren’t able to provide before. We will be able to send the vans out to customers and perform services and repairs onsite. The vans are equipped with over 200 parts bins and all the right tools and equipment,” he says. 

In addition to the mobile service, the Engineering and Operations facility supports major services and repairs.

“This means when we have a major repair, we can do it safely and efficiently with the overhead cranes, supported by trades and engineers, to complete the repair quickly, getting the equipment back on the road as fast as possible.” Gurrie says.

Gurrie, with a background in engineering, says KOR has been able to expand KOR’s expertise and employee more engineers.

“Engineering capability is important for assembly operations, to custom design and solve problems for customers, to enable KOR to provide better feedback to Cappellotto and Schwarze based on our customer feedback to improve products, to generate training material, and to continue improving our aftersales service outcomes” he says.

Gurrie says parts warehousing is another major element for successful aftersales support as customers demand a rapid turnaround for the supply of parts.

“We are also going to expand our national warehouse, which will triple in size as we are currently over capacity, and further streamline our operations process.  We are now supporting both Cappellotto and Schwarze with parts and have a mandate to stock parts in Australia where practical to reduce backorders.  This national warehouse also supports our satellite warehouses located across Australia and New Zealand.”

KOR is investing in the future in pursuit of ensuring the ongoing best support for our customers.

“It is in the DNA of the KOR team to be there for our customers no matter when they call upon us,” says Gurrie. “We have developed our people and systems to support our customer service charter driving excellent outcomes that the team at KOR pride themselves on and we are only getting started.”

For more information visit KOR.

This article featured in the February edition of Trenchless Australasia. 

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