Keeping Equipment in Check
Cat® Customer Value Agreements (CVAs) are part of a growing number of services designed to make our customers more successful.
Purchasing a piece of equipment from a Cat® dealer is often just the beginning of a long relationship between dealer and customer. Caterpillar offers a growing number of services that provide value to customers after the equipment purchase. These include aftermarket parts, rebuilds, fleet management and other services that set us apart from our competition and make our customers more successful working with Cat equipment than they could be with other brands.
One critical suite of services we provide are Cat Customer Value Agreements (CVAs). Available worldwide in various offerings for new, Cat Certified Used and customer-owned equipment, CVAs are ownership plans, or service agreements, that keep machines easy to own and ready to work. The components of CVAs vary but may include Equipment Protection Plans, right on-time delivery of genuine Cat parts, expert dealer services and access to machine insights, and single monthly payment or other flexible financing options. Through ongoing touchpoints, we’re ensuring all customers have the opportunity to take advantage of a CVA.
No matter which type of CVA a customer chooses, they can expect to enjoy a few key benefits:
Our customers need simplified, predictable costs to help keep projects and budgets on track—and that’s what Cat CVAs provide. Says Michelle Walker, VP of Finance and Administration at SSC Underground, an underground construction company in Arizona, “These agreements have been a really key component to our operations. The benefit to it for me is from a budgetary standpoint.” Rather than being surprised by unanticipated service needs, the company can more easily plan for upcoming costs.
To help U.S. customers manage costs and enjoy a hassle-free maintenance experience, we offer CVAs managed by Caterpillar Financial Aftermarket Solutions (CFAS). Cat CVAs through CFAS are offered to customers during the finance process, rolling the cost of the CVA into one simple payment. They can come with flexible financing options, such as being included in the monthly machine payment or financed as a separate monthly maintenance payment. Cat CVAs by CFAS are available at machine point of sale as well as throughout the lifecycle of the asset and are supported by all U.S. dealers. The Cat CVA through CFAS is fully portable and transferable, providing the customer confidence they will enjoy the benefits of their Cat CVA no matter where they are working in the U.S.
Nothing gets in the way of our customers’ productivity like unplanned maintenance issues. CVAs can help to enable timely scheduling of planned maintenance events to keep equipment in optimal health, the right parts delivered at the right time, and optional dealer maintenance planned during previously scheduled downtime. For construction customers like Chris Johnson, Equipment Manager at Kaw Valley Companies in Kansas City, this keeps his operation running smoothly. “You don't have to worry about it,” said Johnson. “They call you, they say, ‘Hey, you're coming up, you're due.’ You know that the maintenance side of that machine is taken care of.”
In China, where annual machine utilization levels are higher and applications can be more challenging than in other parts of the world, we have introduced Protect CVAs, a special aftermarket CVA to help customers maximize their uptime through component protection.
See how Beijing Changdao, a China-based construction company, benefits from a CVA that streamlines maintenance and extends its equipment life.
Many customers choose CVAs that come with labor, expanding dealers’ touchpoints with their customers through regular maintenance and advice. Beyond the iron, CVAs back customers with ongoing support and Cat dealer expertise, from access to proper parts and fluids to knowledge of customers’ businesses. “We’re a small company,” says Matthew Rigdon, Chief Operating Officer, Jackson Offshore Operations, an offshore transportation company. “We don’t have the capabilities to have a full technical staff in-house. CVAs have allowed us to service our engines predictably and reliably, and also ensure that we could protect the long-term value of our vessels.”
Customers don’t only rely on their Cat dealer’s expertise — they can also use digital tools to track the status of their equipment themselves. With easy access through the Cat App and My.Cat.Com, customers can order parts and monitor machine hours, location and key health alerts. Jeff Gatton, owner of JAG Excavating Inc. in Kansas City, uses these tools to help achieve his ultimate business goal of no downtime. “I know every day a machine doesn’t break is a day closer to it breaking. If I can avoid that day as long as possible, our profitability is that much better.” In China, customers can use the Super Doer tool to manage their CVAs, accessing machine data as well as reminders to follow up on inspections, renew contracts and redeem digital coupons.
Finning Cat, a Canadian dealer, has seen its number of CVAs increase from 500 in 2018 to over 6,000*. A major reason for the program’s overall growth and success has been due to a variety of offerings being developed and delivering parts and services on time. The range of CVAs offered includes parts kits for customers who can perform services, CVAs that cover all maintenance and repairs for customers who rely on the Finning infrastructure and expertise, and many combinations of parts and services in between.
Technology is at the center of Finning’s CVAs. VisionLink®, Condition Monitoring and Cat Inspect for digital inspections are standard across all of its offerings. These solutions help to deepen the relationship with CVA customers. They’ve also seen substantial sales growth, even with customers on parts-only CVAs.
As Finning’s experience shows, CVAs’ power lies in offering, not a one-size-fits-all solution, but a variety of offerings that meet each customer’s service needs.
Cat CVAs are available worldwide, with special care taken to meet each region’s specific customer needs, considering customer utilization, maintenance and other ownership activities. They launched in North America and China in 2020 and in Europe and South America in early 2021, and soon will launch in Australia.
*As of April 2021
The videos and photos shown here were captured before the COVID-19 pandemic. Caterpillar follows stringent measures – including wearing masks and social distancing – to continue working safely.
VisionLink is a trademark of Trimble Navigation Limited, registered in the United States and in other countries.