Responding to customer pump requirements is not about selling a product, but rather about an integrated approach, says equipment rental agency Integrated Pump Rental rental development manager Steven Du Toit.
Taking “a more integrated approach” to customer requirements and problems enables the company to remain mindful of the total cost of ownership while focusing on customers’ businesses.
“This enables us to deliver a more effective and efficient solution, and guarantee the services that we deliver to the customer,” Du Toit tells Engineering News.
Going hand-in-hand with this approach is a full-service offering, which includes pumps, accessories, technical assessment and in-field support, he adds.
Such an offering is essential, as it provides customers with a “one-stop solution shop” when working with Integrated Pump Rental, while allowing the company better access to solving a problem without having to outsource or request additional products.
“When people think of pumps, they don’t think of where the water will go, how the pump will remain in its position or how it will be powered. Having everything is really beneficial to us in the market,” he comments.
When completing a technical assessment on site, the company focuses on not only the customer’s reasons for having contacted the company but also the identification of any potential or underlying pump-related issues.
Through this problem-solving approach, the customer’s plant or the production line’s life span is prolonged, Du Toit adds.
On-site assessments by the technical team enable the company to propose application-specific pump solutions, consequently allowing for equipment to function longer and at optimal efficiency, he adds.
“This ensures less downtime and more production turnaround, which is what we strive for,” states Du Toit.
A mining operation in Namibia required a dewatering solution; its remote location and the harsh coastal conditions further dictated that equipment be wear-resistant and require minimal maintenance.
Integrated Pump Rental’s response was a solution enhanced by a customised design, as its Sykes diesel-driven pumps come standard with stainless steel internal wear parts, but for this particular application, a stainless steel volute was included for “a fully stainless steel pump”.
The pump set was constructed out of grade 316 stainless steel at Integrated Pump Rental’s facility in Jet Park, Gauteng.
With efficient working practices and an established supply chain, the pump set was supplied within five days of the order being received. The work and handover were carried out during South Africa’s initial hard lockdown, during which the company was active as an essential services provider to the mining sector.
Meanwhile, with increasingly difficult economic conditions amid Covid-19, Du Toit urges pump users to make the most of their operational inventory, even pumps which may be considered redundant.
The company conducts professional and technical assessments on all pumping equipment, even redundant units, for customers. On the basis of a detailed condition report from the company, along with a competitive quotation, companies can assess the refurbishment option, which usually “makes good business sense” all round.
This offering is performed by the company’s strong technical team, which has extensive experience, and enhanced by the company’s access to a range of pump solutions with accessories, Du Toit adds.
“We have about 20 people in our team who can cater to the technical requirements and assessments. We have a variety of office- and field-based staff, which is quite necessary,” he notes.
Integrated Pump Rental is producing its own locally manufactured product line, which includes the SlurrySucker dredge system and the SlurryBlaster.
The SlurrySucker units are ideal for dredging and cleaning water-capture areas where silt or slime are an issue, while the SlurryBlaster hydro mining equipment solutions offer performance and reliability.
The company’s Sykes diesel-driven pump is suitable for applications where electrical power is not readily available.
Pump and hose flotation devices, as well as custom-engineered automation systems, are also available for all pumping applications, Du Toit says, noting that the company has bolstered its product offering with the inclusion of the Urban LED mobile tower lights, which are mine-specific and comply with safety requirements.
These are “proudly South African-manufactured products”, produced in partnership with smaller contractors to support the industry’s smaller production plants and facilities.
While Integrated Pump Rental does not house a major factory at its offices in Jet Park, it does design the equipment and outsource manufacturing to smaller market players.