“Welcome to Arvika!”
At the visitors’ centre at Volvo CE in Arvika, Sweden, site manager Jonas Lakhall welcomes today’s visitors. After a short presentation, it is time for a tour of the plant.
The visitors of the day represent a number of large companies – most of them from the road, mining and quarry industries – in India. Some already have several machines from Volvo CE, others have placed orders, while some are potential customers.
“This is my first visit to Sweden. It’s good to see production first hand and I really appreciate the hospitality,” says Venkata Nagaraja, Manager Director of Pearl Mineral and Mines Pvt. Ltd. in Ongole in south-eastern India. At a large open-cast mine, the company, which has 300 employees, mines large blocks of black granite. Pearl Mineral and Mines Pvt. Ltd. currently has around 20 excavators from Volvo CE, plus two Volvo L350F wheelloaders.
“Volvo CE offers excellent quality and service, when it comes to both delivery speed and support from the dealer,” says Venkata Nagaraja.
During the tour, the visitors have a chance to see the entire production process and material handling flow: from the tiniest piece of metal to welding, painting, final assembly and quality assurance.
“Customers can get really close to the product. They can feel it and touch it,” says Michael Bergström, one of three guides on this particular day.
He thinks it is very important that customers get to visit the plant in reality.
“These are the kind of things that can play a decisive role in a purchase. The plant is clean and attractive and, what’s more, it’s light and relatively quiet,” says Michael Bergström.
Volvo CE in Arvika welcomes between two and four groups of customers a month. These visits are an important part of operations and a great deal of effort is made to ensure that visitors feel welcome. Today, the TV screens carry a greeting in Hindi, while there are large pictures of machines in different settings on the walls.
Even if the Arvika plant has created effective routines for customer visits, it is constantly attempting to refine and improve the processes to make things even better.
“It’s important to see not only the parts but also the finished product. It creates a different feeling,” says Michael Bergström.
For the visitors from India, this tour of the plant in Arvika marks the end of a three-day trip to Sweden. When the tour ends, Venkata Nagaraja and some other customers will travel on to the marble mine in Carrara in Italy, where a number of Volvo L350Fs are being used in mining operations.
“One of the visitors patted me on the back and said ’Next time, it’ll be a Volvo’. That’s precisely what you want to hear,” says Michael Bergström.