Improving efficiency

Monday, 07 March, 2016 | Supplied by: Verizon Connect Australia Pty Ltd

Picture Perfect Pool Services has more than 17 years of expertise in servicing commercial and residential pools in Martinez, California. The company specialises in cleaning, maintenance and servicing for all types and sizes of pools and pool equipment. Picture Perfect Pool Services takes pride in offering exceptional service with highly trained technicians and quick responses to client needs.

However, a tough economy and growing costs threatened to decrease the company’s profitability. Brian Duncan, president of Picture Perfect Pool Services, needed to find a way to quickly improve the efficiency of the 10 vehicles in his fleet.

Picture Perfect Pool Services promotes “efficiency and speed” for its services but, according to Duncan, some employees were taking far too long to complete their jobs during the day. The company initially tried mobile phone-based tracking to monitor its fleet and improve efficiencies, but the system wasn’t accurate enough to meet the company’s needs.

Duncan then turned to the Fleetmatics GPS Tracking System, which uses satellite technology to track and monitor vehicles, providing minute-by-minute tracking and powerful management reports.

Fleetmatics GPS uses Google Maps API Premier for precise tracking, allowing the user to see the location in any view, including street level.

“I found that employees were spending too much time at job sites and one employee was even making extra stops,” said Duncan.

“Now my employees are aware that they are being monitored for efficiency and they’ve picked up the pace. It was common for guys to stop by their house during work hours or go over the allotted half-hour lunchtime because they were driving 15 minutes home for lunch,” said Duncan.

“With Fleetmatics, I can look at the Route Replay to review where my drivers have been. It has really improved the overall efficiency of the company.”

Speeding was also a major concern, since employees haul dangerous chemicals to job sites, so improving safety was paramount. The Fleetmatics GPS system includes Speeding Alerts that notify if a vehicle exceeds a set speed threshold. Alerts can be set to notify him immediately of an infraction and are also flagged throughout the Management Reports.

“Right away, with Fleetmatics, we were able to slow our guys down,” said Duncan.

Not only have speeding violations decreased, improved routing has helped make deliveries faster and more accurate. Fleetmatics GPS includes the Nearest Vehicle Locator, which helps allocate the closest vehicle to any job site.

“In our business, we have to respond quickly if a client runs into an issue with the Environmental Health Department,” said Duncan. “Now, I don’t have to call around to see who is closest to the site. I just look on the map and send the guy that I know can get there first.”

Not only has improved routing increased the company’s ability to respond to emergencies, it has also helped lower its fuel bill by eliminating extra trips and reducing the amount of time vehicles spend travelling between jobs.

Perfect Picture Pool Services found that the benefits of GPS tracking extend beyond its immediate concerns of efficiency and safety.

“One of the first things I did with the system was reduce the idling times of my vehicles,” said Duncan. “One of my guys was idling for a couple of hours per day wasting fuel, probably listening to the radio. I was able to minimise that immediately with Fleetmatics.”

In addition, the system is used to solve customer disputes. If a customer claims that his driver never arrived to a job, the system can verify exactly when the vehicle arrived at the site and when it left.

Payroll accuracy has also improved as the company no longer has to rely on manual or inaccurate time sheets. Fleetmatics includes the Hours Worked Report, which shows exactly when and how long a vehicle is in operation.

“My overall experience with Fleetmatics has been very positive,” added Duncan. “From the point of sale all the way through customer support, Fleetmatics has exceeded my expectations.”

Image credit: ©pipil7385/Dollar Photo Club

Originally published here.

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