Ledbury, Herefordshire-based ABE Transport has 46 trucks and a 70-strong semi-trailer fleet, maintained by its workshop team of five qualified technicians and an apprentice.
Pryce wanted to digitise the operation and looked at several systems on the market. “The workshop and fleet management were the only aspects of the company not governed by a computer system,” he recalls.
“I could see the need for a new approach – to make my life easier, to give us a comprehensive oversight of all the information we have to record, and just to foster a more joined-up approach to running this side of the business.”
A demonstration of Truckfile showed the system was “exactly what I was looking for”, he adds.
The system records all vehicle safety checks, workshop inspections and any repair job from start to finish.
It also records the initial allocation of a job to a technician, who then uses a hand-held tablet device to check off every stage – and again, all records are automatically updated, securely stored and easily accessible. Drivers, meanwhile, can also use Truckfile for walk-around checks, with details for each vehicle then available on-screen alongside workshop inspection sheets.
Moving from a paper-based system was painless, says Pryce. “The Truckfile team were with us as we went live and have been on hand ever since for support, but really very little help was required.
“It all went incredibly smoothly and already I can’t imagine ever being without it.”
Next, ABE is planning to use the system for parts ordering, to give a more accurate report on cost per vehicle, and to record billing for third party work. The operator is also considering applying to join the DVSA’s Earned Recognition scheme.
“Installing Truckfile brought immediate benefits to our business, but the opportunities it provides to improve the efficiency of the operation are still unfolding,” says Pryce.