Equipment company Caterpillar Inc. to expand in Chicago

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CHICAGO (AP) - A construction machinery company known for its earth-moving equipment plans to expand its Chicago office in an effort to attract top tech talent.

Caterpillar Inc. is expanding its digital team, which includes software developers, data analysts, telecommunication experts and computer engineers, the Chicago Tribune reported .

The Deerfield-based company first moved to downtown Chicago two years ago to improve recruitment. It's critical the company works to continue attracting top tech talent, said Ogi Redzic, the vice president of the company's Cat Digital division.

"The things we're building right now are foundational for the future of Caterpillar," Redzic said. "Customer expectations are changing. ... He is expecting the same tools he (uses) for his daily life to be as good and better in the equipment that he gets."

Companies that aren't traditionally associated with the tech industry can have a difficult time recruiting workers who aren't aware of their digital work.

"Before I joined, I really did not know the scope and breadth of Cat's products," Redzic said. "I was quite surprised actually myself, thinking, 'I'm joining a company that does excavation and mining,' to learn about all the other things Cat is doing globally."

Caterpillar's tech team develops apps for internal and external use, such as a tool that allows equipment owners to monitor machines' maintenance schedules and operation times.

The team analyzes data from the company's machinery to find ways to make equipment more efficient and is also involved in the company's e-commerce operations, which customers use to buy parts for machines.


Information from: Chicago Tribune,