Dealer’s Choice Spotlight: CLAAS

CLAAS of America, Inc. received the Equipment Dealers Association’s 2018 Dealer’s Choice Award in the Full-Line Manufacturer category. “We were very excited to see the news and are honored to have been chosen,” says John Schofield, North American marketing coordinator for the Omaha-based operations. “It reinforces what we thought—that we’re doing good things. And, as always, the survey helps us learn what we can do even better.”

These awards, which are based on the EDA Dealer-Manufacturer Relations Survey, recognize manufacturers that are leading the industry in providing top-quality service, support, products and parts to dealers.

This is the first time the EDA has classified the high-end harvesting company as a full-line manufacturer, and Schofield agrees. While the company has been classified as a “short line” for many years, Schofield says that has been shifting in recent years: “While we don’t make planters and some of the things normally associated with full-line manufacturers, with our introduction of tractors, we’re much more closely aligned, especially when you factor in the other lines we carry in Europe.”

CLAAS of America works with approximately 200 dealers in North America and it’s to them Schofield attributes the company’s continued growth and success: “We give credit to our dealers, who we see as our valuable partners. Without them we would not be where we are today.”

Precision Technology Precisely Delivered

When asked what sets CLAAS of America apart from its competitors, Schofield says: “It’s more than just ‘pushing iron,’ so to speak. Today’s modern farmer and the high-output farms we work with require precision farming technology integrated into their machinery—and that’s where we’re unique.” A prime example is CLAAS’s harvesting machinery, which senses loads and auto adjusts to optimize harvesting efficiencies.

He explains that while they pride themselves on top-notch proprietary technology to run their equipment, that is not always what the farmer wants or needs. Instead, if a farmer is already using Trimble or Ag Leader GPS, for example, and wants to stick with it, CLAAS is able to incorporate that into the build of their CLAAS combine, tractor or other piece of machinery. “We offer an open platform that allows easy integration for those solution,” Schofield explains. “Different farmers have different needs, and we don’t want to force them into another system.”

It’s About Partnerships

CLAAS of America unveiled both new products and technology updates to its line of agriculture equipment at the recent 2018 Farm Progress Show in Boone, Iowa. But Schofield is very clear that this award and the company’s continued success is a team effort. “We can pat ourselves on back, but it’s truly about the strong partnerships we have with dealers that support the farmers in the field. We can’t be everywhere, so it has to be in cooperation with dealerships to make the experience what it needs to be for the farmers,” he adds.

About the Awards

The EDA Dealer’s Choice Awards are based on the results from the annual EDA Dealer-Manufacturer Relations Survey, which received input from 2,200 dealer participants in all 50 states and 10 Canadian provinces to rate up to seven manufacturer lines they carry in 12 key business categories. Manufacturers participating in the survey are classified in one of four different categories: full-line, short-line, tractor and outdoor power equipment.