It’s Not Exactly Magic: How Technicians Get Service Information

August 3, 2022

Companies that use new technologies to serve customers will likely outlast those who cannot – and the faster they deliver, the better they will fare. To secure Caterpillar’s future and support our customers, we continue to prioritize our digital commitment – investing in integrated technologies that enable us to make the world’s most intelligent iron.

Managing Growing Data

In the 1980s, like many manufacturers, Caterpillar was shipping tons of printed parts and service information to dealers every month. It wasn’t just new product parts and service information we needed to distribute. Add to it the thousands of annual updates for existing and legacy products, and the amount of data was overwhelming. 

To manage the mountains of printed paper, Caterpillar moved to CD-ROM libraries in the early 1990s, and later turned to print-on-demand solutions. Even so, the volume of information continued to grow, and the need for a portable digital solution was evident. 

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Technician using mobile electronics inside machine cab.
Service technician running diagnostics on a Cat machine.
Service technician running diagnostics on a Cat machine.

Caterpillar Service Information System (SIS)

SIS is Caterpillar’s platform to distribute vital technical information that service technicians and customers worldwide need to keep Cat® products up and running. SIS was born about 30 years ago when the first service and repair CD-ROM libraries were shipped to dealers, replacing printed paper volumes. It covers information for Cat products from 1977 to today and is the equivalent of over 25,000 books.

Today, SIS 2.0 is a scalable, cloud-based platform providing a simplified, mobile-friendly search and navigation interface for commonly referenced technical parts and service information. It provides dealers and customers with the ability to create a parts list and order parts through our eCommerce sites – all at the push of a button. 

How Do Customers Use SIS? 

Smaller retail customers are frequently do-it-myself consumers who want to repair and maintain their machines themselves. At the other end of the spectrum, we have very large customers (think big mining companies) who hire their own technicians to service their machines and engines. In either case, customers need access to proprietary service and repair information from SIS, which they can only get from their local Cat dealer. 

What About Offline Users? 

Many Cat dealer technicians and customers work in remote areas without internet access. Until recently, Caterpillar made USBs with service information available for offline access. Earlier this year, we introduced a new app that now serves as the disconnected SIS solution, effectively replacing SIS USBs. The SIS2GO app is available for IOS, Android and Windows devices, offering an effective, efficient, mobile-friendly user experience for offline users. 

Value-Add Insights

Using connected assets and easy-to-access applications, customers benefit from reduced unplanned downtime, improved productivity, and increased safety. And since SIS seamlessly integrates with parts.cat.com, it’s easier than ever for both customers and dealers to order exactly the right part to be delivered when and where they need it. 

Tomorrow’s Horizon

At Caterpillar, we work hard every day to improve customer experiences and provide technological advances that help customers reach their goals. With some of the industry’s best minds on board and a leadership team committed to game-changing technology, the future looks bright in our integrated digital world. 

We can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings. 

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