In the first of a new series of ARI advice columns, Matt Cranny, operations director at the fleet management firm, describes how businesses can identify efficiencies and make actionable decisions that reduce vehicle downtime.
Understanding the impact that unplanned vehicle downtime can have on a business, both financially and in terms of operational efficiency, is critical when trying to maximise light commercial availability.
It is unsurprising, then, that managing downtime ranks highly on fleets agendas. In order to effectively manage downtime and keep vehicle-off-road (VOR) to a minimum, it’s important to know the moment a van is taken off the road.
Using telematics to track your vehicles can provide some insight on availability and the treatment of your assets, but adding an additional dataset such as geo-location data could allow you to manage your VOR by the minute by being notified the moment a vehicle is off the road.
By creating a virtual geographic boundary around a service, maintenance and repair (SMR) centre anywhere in the UK and linking this with telematics data, you can monitor precisely when a vehicle enters an SMR centre. This allows you to measure vehicle downtime from the moment the vehicle stops, and by feeding this data directly to an intelligent management information system users are able to provide accurate reporting.
Comparing the date the vehicle arrived at the workshop with the vehicle’s purchase order history, the system can determine whether a job was pre-booked for that vehicle, or if the vehicle arrived at the garage without prior warning. This allows the system to determine vehicles with planned downtime versus unplanned downtime, and gives you full visibility of your VOR.
Of course, having full visibility and being able to accurately report on your vehicle downtime is only part of the solution; it doesn’t help you minimise the time your vehicle is off the road. The key is to be able to use this data to identify efficiencies and make actionable decisions that reduce downtime.
For businesses like ARI, this is where the true value of partnering with a fleet management company become apparent – let a company like ARI analyse your data for you and maximise your vehicle availability.
At ARI we developed our VehicleDowntimeView (VDV) system based on the concept of using geo-location data to track downtime. Within three months of launching VDV, we have been able to increase our customers’ vehicle availability, maximise productivity, and in turn provide significant savings.
For more information on ARI visit www.arifleet.co.uk
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