Keeping your fleet on the road is fraught with all sorts of potential problems. Errors in paperwork, traffic jams and unreliable data can all have a knock-on effect that hampers your ability to deliver a quality service. But there is a solution. The skeye.dart, from manufacturers Hoeft & Wessel – available in the UK from distributor Maxa Technologies – is a robust PDA that features wireless communications with GPRS, GPS and phone functionality, and can be easily installed into any fleet. Abbey Logistics, a leading national haulage firm, are always keen to embrace modern technology and have had the skeye. dart installed across its fleet of over 200 vehicles.
Streamlining the fleet
In the course of the last 20 years, Abbey Logistics has grown to become one of the biggest and most innovative haulage companies in the UK. Naturally, with such a large and varied fleet, the amount of paperwork, coupled with the erratic nature of British highways, can sometimes cause a few headaches.
"The skeye.dart allows us to operate our fleet more efficiently," says Abbey Logistics managing director, Steve Granite. "For example, we can track the status of each load, have up-to-date information on the route and reschedule deliveries through customer services if necessary."
Engineered in Germany, the skeye.dart is one of the most adaptable rugged PDAs of its kind. Thanks to its ergonomic design, the device is comfortable to handle and the user interface is clear and easy to use. The camera and barcode scanner make it a versatile machine, while it is one of the first PDAs to be compatible with the Android operating system.
"The fact that it is an Android device and is cost effective are big selling points for us," says Granite. "The good thing about the skeye.dart is that it reduces the amount of human involvement, so there's less chance of human error. Now we have improved up-to-the-minute statistics on each delivery. Previously, we used a barcode scanning system that provided the stats at various points, whereas this system is absolutely live."
He adds that, since implementing the skeye.dart, transport managers have been able to organise the fleet much more effectively. Furthermore, it has been a real help to the drivers who now enter most of their data electronically, including proof of delivery using the Signature Capture application. This saves time and office costs as well as streamlines the logistics process. It is also environmentally friendly, which sits well with a company like Abbey Logistics who pride themselves in being a Greener European Logistics provider.
Training is key
One of the reasons Abbey Logistics has been so successful is its ability to manage change within the industry and stay ahead of the competition. The Transport Management system that runs on the skeye.dart – developed by software company XLR – is fairly intuitive but Steve Granite knew that training staff to use it productively was crucial to gaining user acceptance.
"First, we identified the benefits for all parties concerned," he says. "We then ran training sessions and had every employee involved. Key stakeholders must be part of the process."
Experience with the skeye.dart has inspired many uses. For example, most of the driver safety checks that were previously done manually are now processed electronically. Granite is also keen that customers have access to delivery status information in order to aid their own business management.
Superior products and service
With headquarters in Hannover (Germany), Hoeft & Wessel has long been at the forefront of mobile computing technology, providing customer-driven product designs in target markets.
The company is currently showing excellent growth within the enterprise mobility sector. It is also very big on partnerships and worked with a number of businesses to bring the skeye.dart to Abbey Logistics. One of the key partners is FCS 'Installer of the Year' Handsfree who are the approved installation company for Hoeft & Wessel. They successfully installed the skeye.dart across the fleet with a lightweight, low-cost mounting solution that uses minimum space in the cab area and provides charge to the device. In addition, XLR developed the software to ensure ease of use and generated excellent results.
Hoeft & Wessel is known for providing innovative solutions and delivering real value for money while working closely with clients to gain user acceptance. That's why the skeye.dart is one of the most successful PDAs in the retail, logistics and field service sectors and really does help companies provide the top quality service that today's customers expect.
For more information contact UK distributor Maxa Technologies Ltd. Tel: +44 (0) 161 942 7850. www.maxatec-europe.com