Van Dyk understands how critical a customer’s downtime is and how important it is as a system supplier to be ready at a moment’s notice to solve a customer’s problem. “We believe in supporting our customers at all times—not just at point of sale,” says Pieter van Dijk, president of Van Dyk Recycling Solutions. “Factors affecting the recycling industry are constantly evolving, and some of our customers are worried about where their business may be in years, months or even weeks down the line. One thing they can be sure of is where we will be, which is on-call 24/7 to support their business in every way we can.”
Equipment that provides comfort
Exceptional service starts with exceptional products. Since 1984, Van Dyk has placed more than 500 balers in operation in North America, the majority of which are still operating today. The average age of a Bollegraaf baler in operation today is 14 years, but many have been running for 20, 25 and even 30 years. Many are the sole baler at the end of massive 24-hour systems with throughputs between 30-50 tph. “Our customers are often surprised by how much throughput a Bollegraaf baler can process,” says van Dijk. “They tell me, ‘It just runs and runs!’”
Because many of Van Dyk’s balers become the “heart of their operation” (meaning the entire production relies on their continued performance), Van Dyk has developed a parts and service staff over the years that extends far beyond what other suppliers offer. Their telephone support line is running 24/7/365 for customers who need mechanical advice, and they have 32 technicians based across North America to make necessary service visits easier to schedule.
“We have a long list of repeat customers because of our balers,” says van Dijk. “After owning one, our customers know they are in partnership with a supplier who offers dependable and efficient machinery and is backed by a service organization that is dedicated to maximizing their uptime.”
Get parts in one click
To help their customers get spare parts as fast as possible, in 2016 Van Dyk started an online ordering system that allows customers to browse a full catalog of parts, get their own quotes, see delivery estimates and place their orders. With photos and descriptions for 16,500 different parts, it’s just like shopping on Amazon. The company’s shipping options include next-day and same-day shipping via courier service.“We don’t want customers experiencing downtime or delays in receiving critical parts,” says van Dijk. “We stock tens of thousands of parts in a 100,000-square-foot warehouse in Norwalk, Connecticut, so that they are available the moment a customer needs them.”
A team above and beyond
“Being a customer of ours means you’re never on your own,” says van Dijk. Van Dyk leads their customers through every step of a project from design to installation to after-sale service. Their dedicated installation and service teams are trained on all aspects of the machinery to provide expert assembly of equipment and expert troubleshooting advice.
“Our installation team is known for staying on time and within budget,” says van Dijk. “In 2019 we completed a large retrofit of a single-stream system that took just nine months from point of sale to fully operational. The customer wanted it done before Christmas, and we made it happen.”
Help right at your side
This month Van Dyk rolls out a new product to help make their service even more comprehensive and valuable to the customer. Dubbed Van Dyk Vision-ARTM, it is a headset that uses cameras and Wi-Fi to simulate the experience of having an expert technician right by your side. The customer wears the headset, which is equipped with headphones, a microphone, a 1” camera and a software screen smaller than an eyeglass lens. The Van Dyk service desk streams the video from the customer’s camera to see exactly what the customer is looking at. In turn, the Van Dyk technician can upload documents, such as schematics, to the customer’s screen and even circle or point at the machine part the customer needs to be looking at.
Says van Dijk, “Even though we have had great success in solving 97 percent of our customers’ troubleshooting problems over the phone, some things can still get lost in translation. The most important thing is that our customers always get the help they need from us. Van Dyk Vision-ARTM is the closest we can get to actually having one of our technicians on-site.”
Putting experience to the test
Not sure what equipment is right for your new project or retrofit? Try before you buy.
Van Dyk’s test center in Norwalk is a fully operational sorting system featuring four optical sorters, separation screens, a ballistic separator, sequencing conveyors and more. Customers can bring in a sample of their incoming material stream to test on the actual machinery they are considering purchasing and in a similar system set up. “It minimizes their risk,” says van Dijk. “Before making a capital investment, a customer can see his material run over specific equipment and see the actual results. It makes him much more confident that his investment will actually work and pay off.
“After a recent test of his mixed paper material, a customer told me what he saw helped inform his business strategy and formulate what his next steps would be,” van Dijk continues. “That’s exactly what this test center is for—to increase our customers’ success.”
Brand owners and packaging makers also visit to see how their containers and packaging stand up in a real MRF. “Many consumer products are not made with recycling in mind,” says van Dijk. “However, attitudes toward that are changing, and we are seeing big brands more concerned with what happens to their containers post-consumer. We have tested many variables in product packaging and presented our findings back to the brand.”
Van Dijk also sees the test center as a research facility for his own team. “Every time we do a test, we learn something ourselves,” he says. “We get new ideas for how to make our next customer’s system design even better.”