“For a number of reasons, it was time for our team to make a move,” said Nickolaus Pinaire, General Manager of SITECH Michigan. “SITECH stands for Site Technology. Technology adoption is growing, and we need to position ourselves to support this continued growth. Pre- and post-COVID, customers are leveraging innovation on the jobsite – machine control, survey, software, drones, remote capabilities, training, etc. – to help solve their top problems.”
Located at 25000 Novi Road, the newly renovated facility will offer a brand-new customer storefront; larger parts inventory storage to support uptime; an inspect, repair, and calibration center; an improved training facility; and an outdoor demonstration and training area.
The storefront ensures that customers have access to complimentary survey supply equipment needed for a job, including grade stakes, spray paint, grade rods, levels, lasers, and more. Customers can also pick up and drop off their equipment rentals and repairs.
“Our team manages over 4,500 of parts inventory to protect our customers’ uptime, and we were at the overflow tipping point at the previous location,” Pinaire said. “Our new space provides our people with the opportunity to improve our processes and product solutions so we can continue to deliver service excellence for our customers.”
At the inspect, repair, and calibration center, SITECH Michigan’s certified repair technicians can help customers maintain their uptime by providing annual inspections/calibrations, preventative maintenance, repairs, product upgrades, and more.
SITECH Michigan’s move to Novi is not only convenient for a large population set of customers (who reside or work around the greater metro-Detroit area), but it is also beneficial for the company’s partnership with Michigan CAT which is now just down the road from the new location. Pinaire said that, amongst other benefits, the strong partnership with Michigan CAT and MacAllister Machinery allows SITECH Michigan to test and demonstrate the latest Trimble technology and software on the new and old machines to ensure a superior experience for joint customers.
“With our partnership with Michigan CAT, we can also leverage eight locations across the state,” Pinaire said. “So the contractor can drop their technology equipment rentals, repairs, etc. off at Michigan CAT’s Kalkaska branch location as an example, shuttle it overnight free of charge to our Novi location, and avoid costly freight, downtime, and assist faster turnaround times.”
“Training is confidence, training is awareness. It’s not a one-and-done thing, it’s a journey, and we’re there until our customers feel comfortable and are maximizing capabilities,” Pinaire said. “In the off season, we do a lot of training with contractors either on their sites or at our in-house locations. We do training all across the state of Michigan.”
Between the typical off-construction season months of January and March, SITECH Michigan’s in-person training curriculum includes – but is not limited to – the following classes: Basic Construction Surveying, Machine Grade Control - Earthworks, Total Station Paving/Rover Basics, and Software Training (Trimble Business Center Design, WorksManager Connectivity, WorksOS Productivity, Drone Stratus, etc.)
The outdoor demonstration and training area allows customers to demo various equipment and technologies, from 2D Earthworks GO! on a skid steer to full 3D design capable machine control capabilities on an excavator, dozer, motor grader, paver, and more.
“It was getting to that stage where we needed a bigger facility to accommodate our training sessions, we needed a facility to be able to offer demonstrations here,” Pinaire said. “We want to help our customers take the next steps in their technology adoption journey (wherever they may be), be comfortable, confident, and be able to physically realize the gains on their jobsites.”
“We look at the jobsite as a process,” Pinaire said. “Whether it is the planning, estimating, design, survey, production, or evaluation phases, how can we work to control the jobsite process using our technology solutions? Some say, ‘The only constant is change.’ There is good technology and there is bad technology. The key is helping to decipher between those and continue moving forward in a positive direction.
“Many customers also share common industry problems such as safety, labor shortages, the need to win more bids, be more sustainable (less emissions), more productive, efficient, manage costs, etc. Between the state of Michigan’s and the Federal Infrastructure Bill, we are seeing a record amount of funding to repair and replace our roads, bridges, schools, and help our communities. However, if contractors are finding it difficult to attract skilled operators to complete all of this work, grade control semi-autonomy solutions may help progress less skilled operators to complete the work on time, on budget, with good quality, and safely.”
For customers interested in construction surveying technology, Trimble site positioning systems can help contractors manage multiple jobsites, perform tasks more productively, meet tighter specifications, and avoid rework. With the ability to remotely share information and track results instantly, this technology can keep the whole crew connected.
“Connectivity is playing a bigger and bigger role in our industry,” Pinaire said. “Similar to your IT department’s capabilities, if there is experienced downtime, we have the ability to remote into your machines or survey equipment to help you troubleshoot, ensure we have the right part to assist when our technician comes out, and get you up and running faster. Connectivity also helps our customers flash update the latest design changes to their machine assets, which streamlines communication, reduces travel time, and improves production using the most recent design.”
SITECH Michigan’s software solutions by Trimble can help with everything from 3D modeling to fleet and asset management, to drone mapping and augmented reality. The software can help customers optimize design-construct processes, monitor production vs. targets, and collaborate more effectively with individuals in their organization.
“Technology means a lot of things to a lot of people,” Pinaire said. “From our side, we can’t control the weather. But if we look at construction as a process and we look at things that we can do within our control to improve each stage of that process, then making progress is possible. Bottomline: what is our application, what problem are we trying to solve, is there proven technology available on the jobsite to help?”