NEWS RELEASE September 01, 2022
Backup support streamlined for expanding contracting business
Crestmead, Queensland (1 September, 2022) – GROWING demand from a thriving agriculture sector, from the Riverina in New South Wales to the Darling Downs in Queensland, has made John Deere’s Connected Support™, more important to owners Gavin and Clare Dal Broi than ever.
"Basically, Connected Support has allowed backup support to be extremely cost effective," Mr Dal Broi said.
"Regardless of where my machine is working, if it’s on my own farm here at Griffith or near Bourke in north-west New South Wales, a technician can dial into the cab and fix any issues within minutes."
Mr and Mrs Dal Broi established Broidal Contracting in 2012 when they purchased their first John Deere cotton picker, a CP7760, for use on their family farms 'Terrawarra' and 'Warrawidge West' Station. Over the past decade they’ve expanded their fleet to 17 machines to provide earthworks, planting, spraying and harvesting services to farmers in New South Wales and Queensland and today pick about 3500 ha of cotton a year and harvest a total of 2000 ha of winter cereal crops.
Mr Dal Broi said John Deere’s Connected Support – a suite of digital tools linking farmers with their dealership and allowing skilled technicians to connect virtually into cabs via JDLink™ connectivity to provide instant remote diagnostics and backup support - had been a key asset to the growing venture.
"First and foremost, as a contracting business, we have a duty to farmers to get their crop off in a timely manner to avoid any weather impacts influencing their trade," Mr Dal Broi said.
"In this regard, backup support provided through Connected Support is crucial, as we require equipment to be working at peak capacity."
Fleet sows success
Mr Dal Broi credits his reliable equipment, including an 8530, 8245R, 8370RT, 8RT 370, 9520RT and 9560R Tractors, and 9620 Scraper, as being key to attracting and retaining clients.
The stable of workhorses also encompasses a 4940 Sprayer, two 1720 MaxEmerge™ Planters, a 60-foot 1830 Seeder and a 1910 Tow-Behind Air Commodity Cart as well as the initial CP7760, CP690, CP770 and S770 and S790 Harvesters.
In the peak season, the business’s six full-time staff member base doubles to include an additional five or six seasonal workers.
Mr Dal Broi said having a complete John Deere fleet provided interoperability and streamlined training, with Connected Support also a great backup to help new operators when he couldn’t physically assist them.
Through Service ADVISOR™ Remote, technicians can also dial into machines to complete diagnostics and maximise equipment performance, or, ensure they have the correct parts and tools needed for when they attend the job.
"Often, you see farmers have to get a technician out to their farm when it turns out it was only a minor issue. With Connected Support, they can dial into the machine, troubleshoot the problem and often fix it straight away," he said.
Connected Support also provides Expert Alerts, a monitoring system which has the power to predict and prevent certain mechanical issues, avoiding costly repair bills or damage to the equipment, as the dealership is instantaneously notified and can take proactive action.
"This has been of great value to me multiple times," Mr Dal Broi said.
"We have found the pressure of wanting to complete a job, on occasion, can encourage operators to disregard codes from the cab as they assume it is only minor. However, with Expert Alerts, our dealer can notify them to stop, and often we are thankful we have done so – it has saved us a fair bit of money as further damage or costly repairs can be avoided."
The success of Broidal Contracting has occurred despite two unprecedented droughts within the past decade, which has prompted Mr Dal Broi to adopt a more cautious and sustainable approach to future expansion. His goal is to create a thriving yet stable agriculture venture, prosperous enough to support his three sons Jasper (13), Wyatt (10) and Quinn (6) if they choose to pursue a career in farming.
"Two droughts within ten years hasn’t helped the business, but within the last four months I have had more calls from farmers looking for a contractor than I have in previous years combined," he said.
"Primarily, our issue is personnel, if I could split myself or some of my best operators up into two, we would be all set. It’s vital we have a staff base who treats the machinery like it is their own and has the strong work ethic our clients require.
"Overall, Connected Support has given me peace of mind backup support can be swift, and regardless of where I am, or where my machinery is working, equipment is being monitored."
Across his own farms, and within the contracting business, Mr Dal Broi is envisioning the role of virtual support to only further develop.
"In the mid-term, I am hoping more machine automation will become available, and the simpler jobs can be completed through autonomous machines, while our top-tier, experienced employees can focus on managing more complex operations."
About Deere & Company:
Deere & Company is a global leader in the delivery of agricultural, golf & turf, construction, and forestry equipment. We help our customers push the boundaries of what's possible in ways that are more productive and sustainable to help life leap forward. Our technology-enabled products including the John Deere Autonomous 8R Tractor and See & Spray™ are just two of the ways we help meet the world's increasing need for food, shelter, and infrastructure. Deere & Company also provides financial services through John Deere Financial. For more information, visit John Deere at its worldwide website at JohnDeere.com or in Australia at JohnDeere.com.au.