Knowing their niche
Many great things start out small. This is certainly true for the family run business of Ron Crouch Transport (RCT), which officially commenced in 1978 when founders Ronald and Beverly Crouch bought their first truck. Later that same year, a second truck was added to the fleet to allow them to do livestock transportation. From there, the business has evolved steadily on the back of a commitment to service excellence. Today, RCT is one of the leading logistics providers in regional Australia
Geoff Crouch is Ron and Beverly’s son, and is now the Managing Director of RCT. Whilst he grew up in and around the family business, his experience isn’t limited to it.
“My background was actually retail and finance. I went through the management training at Woolworth’s, and then started a career in finance with Barclays,” he says.
He knew that he wanted to do something outside the family business once he had left school. That way, he could build up his experience and knowledge, and also make sure he knew that the transport industry was something he wanted to be a part of.
“When I did make the decision to join the family company, it was because I wanted to do it,” he explains. “I knew it was going to be something I would want to do for the rest of my life. This has been the case, as I have been here for the last 18 years.”
He also says that his parents wanted him to come into the business with a certain amount of maturity, and supported his career goals.
“They didn’t want an 18 year old school leaver coming in as the owner’s son. I instead came into it as a 30 year old with experience in other industries.”
Ron Crouch Transport is always striving to exceed the expectations of their clients. According to Peter Braneley, Business Development Manager at the company, their growth has been driven by that focus.
“We pride ourselves on our customer service,” he says. “Not only that, but with the network we have put into place – we can now provide an end to end domestic service. We are not just a regional transport carrier.”
To compliment this network Ron Crouch Transport has invested significantly in the necessary infrastructure to ensure they are able to offer a comprehensive list of services.
“In addition to national logistics we also offer, container unpacks, warehousing, and distribution – and I think this really sets us apart from many other regional carriers,” Peter says.
Today, Ron Crouch Transport operates Australia wide, with deports in Wagga Wagga, Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane and Canberra. Their head office is located in New South Wales.
To maintain their good relations with their clients, Peter and Geoff ensure that they are personally available to offer any support they might need.
“When required customers have direct access to senior management, they do not have to go through several channels to try and get an answer. We pride ourselves on offering superior levels of communication to ensure the client receives any information they require in the most efficient manner,” Peter says.
This direct communication helps RCT to understand their client’s logistic requirements. Because of that, they are able to invest in the right equipment to meet those requirements.
“With other larger companies they may not get that same level of service,” Peter says.
“A lot of the bigger companies provide a generic service from a logistics point of view. We are very happy to be very flexible and we try very hard to be there for our clients,” Geoff adds.
When faced with a complex issue, RCT refuses to say it cannot be done, instead they look at solutions. “We have a number of clients that we have bought specialised equipment for – purely and solely for their requirements. We can provide the appropriate solution to any problem they have,” Peter says with confidence.
“We have a strong strategic focus on specialising in the transport and warehousing of dangerous goods. Our clients in this sector are predominately chemical suppliers to agricultural and manufacturing industries,” Geoff says.
“As a specialist in dangerous goods we have constructed purpose built warehousing in Wagga and Melbourne to ensure total compliance with all regulatory requirements. We are also licenced by NSW Workcover for the warehousing of dangerous goods and are accredited under the AgSafe standards program.”
Getting ready for the future
The vision for RCT is one of growth. Geoff says they have put plans in place that will see the business go farther than ever before. “We have plans to grow our metropolitan business, predominantly between Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, so that we can continue to provide the complete logistic service expected by our clients”
“It really is about developing the total solution for our clients, to do that we need to ensure that we continue to be able to offer a comprehensive national capability” says Peter.
“We have a strong focus on growing the business – we are not prepared to sit here. Everyone in the current economy is keeping their card close to their chests, but Peter and I have some very strong faith in the economy going forward,” says Geoff.
I believe there will be some great opportunities for a niche carrier such as RCT to capitalise on.”
Geoff knows what he is talking about, as he is heavily involved with several industry associations, and currently holds the presidency of NatRoad, the National Road Transport Operators Association as well as being a director of the Australian Trucking Association, the industries peak body. In that role, he is able to stay plugged into the national scene and observe the changing trends of the industry.
“We’ve built contacts,” he explains. “And and that’s not just in the industry. We also have connections to local, state and federal bureaucracies. This lets us get an idea of what’s going to happen in the industry in two years’ time – or in five years’ time.”
“This allows us to position our business to better serve our clients in the future,” he says.
For more information, please visit their website at: Ron Crouch Transport
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