|Hoober Inc. employees outside the new Mifflintown, Pa., location.|
MIFFLINTOWN, Pa. — Hoober Inc., an agricultural equipment dealer with 9 locations in Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia recently moved its dealership in McAlisterville, Pa., to a larger facility in Mifflintown, Pa.
Located at 43 Industrial Circle, the 72,000 square foot facility was previously Pro Built Homes, a modular home manufacturer. The distance between the McAlisterville location and the new dealership is only seven miles, but the benefits for customers and the dealership are significant, according to Brad Hershey, store manager at Mifflintown. Larger shop space to accommodate larger equipment is a big benefit to customers as is the dealership’s easy access.
“Being where we are now on Route 322 makes our location very convenient for our customers and so far the reaction we’ve received has been very positive,” said Hershey. “I know they are pleased we’ve invested in the community and that we’ve invested in central Pennsylvania because they understand that we’re here to stay.”
For the dealership, increased safety was a key factor as was the larger space.
“At McAlisterville, we had our equipment on a separate lot that was across the road and here we have everything, buildings and equipment, on one lot so that provides more safety when moving equipment,” said Hershey. “Having everything under one roof is great, too. Our service team probably benefitted the most because they each have a 25x40 foot bay. I know the word ‘stoked’ was used more than once by some of our employees when talking about the move.”
The increased shop space will benefit customers because it means all members of the service team can be working in the shop at the same time if needed, which helps with the work flow. According to Hershey, at the McAlisterville location some service team members had to work outside where adverse weather would impact the work getting done.
A lot of planning was done before the move from McAlisterville, with the wholegoods machinery transfer starting about two weeks before the new location opening. The parts inventory, however, provided the biggest challenge.
“There has been an IH or Case IH dealership here in McAlisterville since 1939 and there is no complete script you can write for a move of this magnitude,” said Hershey. “We knew moving the parts department would take the most planning and would need to be done as fast as possible. We wanted the customers’ parts experience to be seamless, so we planned the parts move to take place in two days and accessed parts from other Hoober Inc. locations during that time. Our service department started moving the week before and had most of their service bays set up before the parts move. We all worked together and I couldn’t have been more pleased how it all worked out. Now we have space we can grow into. We were pleased we were able to find an empty building and to avoid going through new construction. It was fun to repurpose a modular home plant into a modern farm machinery dealership.”
Editor's Note: Hoober Inc. was named the Most Valuable Dealership for 2016 by Precision Farming Dealer. Read the full Most Valuable Dealership article on Hoober Inc. in the Winter 2016 issue of Precision Farming Dealer .