Customer Technical Service: Michael Rhinehart Interview

Mike RhinehartInside Our Technical Service

Mike Rhinehart  is Technical Manager at Clextral Inc.
He is in Charge of the service and spare parts department.

How long have you been working at Clextral?

“I have been working at Clextral Inc. since 1996. I do our field service work; travel in the US, Canada, Mexico, all of the North American region. I have also made trips to Europe, Asia, and Australia to do service work there as well to support other parts of Clextral.”

How do you define your job?

“My job is to almost predict the problem, try to be prepared for it. Help the customer understand what problems can occur,  what parts they should keep on hand and that there are people trained to recognize these problems and know how to fix it them.
When doing a regular monitoring of the equipment we can normally see a problem coming before it takes the machine down. That is why is important for the client to keep up with regular inspections and maintenance.”

Mike Rhinehart working on a machine modifWhen are you going to visit customers?

“I probably spend about half of my time in the field.  I go out for machines commissioning, maintenance inspection (check up on the machine),  give the client an overall understanding of what kind of condition the machine is and where there are problems; where we need to fix this or fix that, where they may expect to have to replace screws or barrels.  For those things we have a regular program with many clients, we go see them typically once a year. The other thing I come across is the emergency visit when the customer says “my machine is down, I don’t know what happened, I don’t know what the problem is, I need your help NOW!”. That is the time when I’m flying out the next day or flying out that afternoon to go solve the problem.”

How is you relationship with the customers?

“We know each other pretty well because we are not so big that every time they call they are talking to somebody else. When they call they know they are calling me and that I know their machines. There is a lot of history in my head about these machines!

It is always a good feeling when we have gotten a big job completed, made it on time, get the equipment running and satisfy the customer. Some of the projects that we take on start nine months or more before the equipment actually starts to run.  Both Clextral and the client are putting a lot of time an effort into this project. So when we finally make it to the end, and everything has gone smoothly, and we were able to see the equipment run, make it work for the client, it is a very good feeling to know that you have done everything right during the past nine months to get this thing ready to go! There are a lot of places along the way where things can go wrong! “

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