This Business Is Personal

Vermeer received the Equipment Dealers Association’s 2019 Dealer’s Choice Award in the Shortline Manufacturer category. This is the company’s fifth award in this category since the award program was started in 2013.

“We’re honored to receive this award,” says Nathan Guess, Managing Director for Forage Solutions for Vermeer. “The survey is a wonderful benchmark, not only for us, but for the industry. This business is competitive, and competition gives customers better choices.”

The Dealer’s Choice Awards are presented to manufacturers that receive top ratings from equipment dealers in the EDA Dealer-Manufacturer Relations Survey. The awards recognize manufacturers that are leading the industry in providing top-quality service, support, products and parts to dealers.

Vermeer uses the results of the survey to help propel their business forward. “The first thing we do is see how we did overall—how our scores compared to last year,” says Bret Julian, Director of Sales for Forage Solutions. “We use it to understand where we need to put investment and energy.”

And while survey is a platform for discussion and improvement within the company, it’s also something more. “We use it to stop and say thank you to all those who make these scores possible,” says Dan Belzer, Lifecycle Manager for Forage Solutions. “And that’s everyone from the sales team to service, production, quality and parts.”

It’s Personal

When talking with the team at Vermeer, it’s clear that this business is personal to them. “Many of us at Vermeer raise cattle, so we know the frustrations that cattle producers and dealers face,” says Julian. “This world doesn’t operate 9-5. The dealers are there until the job is done. It’s the same for us.” And the “us” refers to the entire team at Vermeer—from managers, to the sales group, to service. “That may mean taking care of service and manning the phones all night long during hay season—that’s just who we are,” adds Guess.

That sentiment is echoed by Belzer. “A lot of us have this upbringing, so we strongly believe in dealer support and customer support,” he says. “We connect with them, listen to them and try to understand their situation. That helps us with our philosophy: to be easy to do business with.”

Company Commitment and Innovation

Awards and accolades are nice, but in the end it’s about moving ahead together. And that means trying to be in field as much as possible—and getting dirty, says Julian. In fact, this hands-on willingness to get dirty is part of the company philosophy from the top on down.

For Vermeer this also means giving back to those in the industry. Bailey Boyert, Senior Marketing Specialist, says that with this wet and flooded spring, which has impacted dealers and customers, Vermeer has supported disaster relief through the EDA’s foundation.

“We do business by trying to be easy to do business with,” Boyert confirms. “Every member of the team knows their job is to support the dealers. Plus, we focus on innovation in our products to bring customers to dealers’ doors, including products no one else has. Right now it’s our self-propelled balers, but we’re always working on something new, something no one has ever seen.”

About the Awards

The EDA Dealer’s Choice Awards are based on the results from the annual EDA Dealer-Manufacturer Relations Survey, which received input from 2,200 dealer participants in all 50 states and 10 Canadian provinces to rate up to seven manufacturer lines they carry in 12 key business categories. Manufacturers participating in the survey are classified in one of four different categories: full-line, short-line, tractor and outdoor power equipment.