Recently we caught up with TMHA director of sales Cameron Paxton for a chat. Cameron has had a front-row seat for the extraordinary growth of the Toyota forklift business in Australia and was especially keen to talk about the Toyota Advantage.
“The Toyota Advantage applies whether we’re supplying one forklift or a national fleet,” Cameron said.
“It begins with the product. As with all Toyota products, Toyota forklifts are renowned for their quality, durability and reliability – the famed QDR – and industry leading re-sale value.
“Backing the product quality aspect is our commitment to service support and parts. I like to think of it as homogenous service, because our national network offers the same consistent quality and attention to detail from Brisbane to Perth.
“With a full factory owned branch network, it’s easier to service national customers. We have a national footprint and the quality of service is consistently top level across the country.
“That consistency stems from Toyota’s long-standing lead in service-support training. Toyota pioneered TAFE training for forklift technicians in Australia and is committed to on-going apprentice training with a new intake every year.
“We also make a massive investment in parts and service infrastructure.
“However, the big advantage is our people. Customers appreciate the people – they’re the ones who make the difference. Crucially, we retain great, experienced people.
“Our average staff tenure is 7.5 years and ten years for sales people, so customers are interacting with people they know.
“We have over 750 staff, with 450 of those in product support. Even our Chief Financial Officer is involved with customers – you don’t see that in many companies.”
Cameron has witnessed many changes to the business over the years, the biggest being Toyota’s migration to a fully factory owned branch network.
“Our growth in the last ten years has also been impressive, and consistent across all areas of our business. With products such as automated guided forklifts, racking and work assist vehicles, we offer a total solution for our customers.
“Look at the progress in technology too, thanks to Toyota’s unmatched investment in R&D. When l started with Toyota in 1997, we were predominately an internal-combustion truck business. Now, we actually sell more battery electric trucks than IC trucks and we are heavily involved in the supply of automated guided forklifts.
“Two weeks ago, TMHA officially celebrated 50 years of Toyota forklift sales with a gala function. There are exciting times ahead, with new material-handling technology and new product lines coming on stream.”