Spare Parts Catalogs for a More Efficient Agriculture

Published: 2023-02-14 Updated: 2023-11-10

Farming is hard work for both man and machine. Technological progress brings relief: Networking data at agricultural equipment manufacturers and operators allows tractors, combine harvesters and wheel loaders, for example, to be used better and for longer. Find out what role digital spare parts catalogs play in this.

Falling prices, rising costs, and changing nutritional habits among consumers are forcing many farms to rethink their approach. At the same time, standards for animal welfare and resource protection, such as the requirements for the use of pesticides, are becoming stricter. Staying profitable against this backdrop poses major challenges, especially for smaller farms. 

While many contractors have long relied on digital tools, family farms are often still at the beginning of their digitization journey. The good news is that they do not have to make a 180-degree turn to go digital. The first step into the future is to use existing technology more efficiently and to network it. 

This is matched by the efforts of agricultural equipment manufacturers to expand their service offerings even further. Major manufacturers already have online portals where farmers can find important information about their machines and receive maintenance support. More services will be added in the future. 

Aftersales and spare parts catalogs in agriculture

Aftersales service and the spare parts business play an important role. Both ensure that agricultural operations run smoothly and that their machines can remain in use for a long time.  

Operators of agricultural machinery thus save costs for expensive new purchases, while machine manufacturers gain an additional source of revenue. Digital spare parts catalogs form the basis for these developments. 

What is a digital spare parts catalog?

The digital spare parts catalog is replacing the analog catalog in many industries, where service technicians can find helpful information for identifying and ordering machine parts that need to be replaced, for example. Digital catalogs deliver this data on USB sticks or via the Internet and are linked to systems such as enterprise resource planning. 


How agricultural machinery manufacturers and operators benefit from spare parts catalogs

In the agricultural sector, digital spare parts catalogs provide both manufacturers and users of agricultural machinery with important information about machine parts in a digital and well-structured form.  

This offers various advantages: 

  • Farmers order spare parts online via the digital catalog. This not only saves them time when searching for parts, but also when procuring them. This is particularly important in a seasonal industry like agriculture. 
  • Digital spare parts information and flexible ordering options reduce the downtimes of agricultural machinery and thus the costs that yield losses would entail. 
  • Spare parts catalogs are available on mobile devices around the clock - right where agricultural machinery is doing its hard work.  
  • Even in rural regions with weak networks, spare parts information is available at all times because spare parts catalogs can also be accessed offline
  • Agricultural technology is becoming increasingly complex and sophisticated. With a spare parts catalog, machine operators can keep track of installed parts
  • Suppliers of agricultural machinery increase customer loyalty with spare parts catalogs and reduce the workload of their service team. 
  • Manufacturers get an up-to-date and comprehensive overview of the demand for specific parts and thus optimize their spare parts logistics.   
  • With digital spare parts catalogs, agricultural machinery manufacturers digitize and professionalize their aftersales service and thus better differentiate themselves from the competition. 

If harvesting machines or other agricultural machinery break down, farmers suffer financial losses. Manufacturers of agricultural machinery can protect their customers from this risk by organizing their spare parts in the best possible way.  

The better spare parts are available and the easier it is to find the right part, the lower the risk of machinery failure in the field. For this reason, a digital spare parts catalog is indispensable in agriculture. 


Advantage for operators: implementing trends in agriculture more quickly

There is another argument for the use of digital spare parts catalogs in agriculture: With the digital solution, agricultural businesses are able to benefit more quickly from trends.  

A current example is Smart Farming. Smart Farming uses modern information and communication technologies to help agriculture make better decisions and optimize processes based on data. The aim is to make agriculture more sustainable, efficient, and resilient at the same time. 

With a view to the efficient use of agricultural machinery, digital spare parts catalogs play a central role in Smart Farming. 

Advantage for manufacturers: improving internal processes

Komptech's example shows that suppliers of agricultural machinery not only make their customers happy, but also their own employees. The special machinery manufacturer from Austria uses a special form of spare parts catalog in its service: Komptech relies on 3D data that show machine parts in all dimensions

This makes it even easier for users of the machines to identify parts. However, the 3D data also makes work much easier for Komptech employees. The fitters can check and inspect machines even more easily using 3D models.  

In addition, they have all the information on various parts and their installation situation at their disposal. The company thus saves a lot of time in assembly and product improvement. 

For further practical use cases and concrete challenges that spare parts catalogs solve, see a separate blog article