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Fleet Management Software, Part 3

Written by Susan Geoghegan

(Ed. note: This is the third article in a multi-part series on fleet management software. For earlier articles in this series, go to www.hendonpub.com and click Resources, then click Article Archives.)

FleetPoint 
For small to medium-sized agencies, FleetPoint offers affordable, real-time fleet management software that maximizes efficiency while reducing costs. Established in 2004, and recently acquired by Grey Island Systems International, FleetPoint develops and distributes electronic monitoring and tracking systems for the transportation industry. This flexible Web-based program can be tailored to meet the needs of any type and size of organization.

FleetPoint understands that municipal fleets have special requirements with regards to accountability and compliance, making it difficult for fleet managers to develop accurate reports. Their FleetPoint SME desktop application creates detailed vehicle reports and performance information which can be accessed and shared 24/7 by all departments.

The Fleet Fuel Reporting component monitors fuel consumption and allows month-to-month comparison of vehicle performance. Preventative Maintenance reports provide real-time diagnostics information that reduces service bay costs and streamlines the scheduling of routine maintenance. Portable automated mileage units placed in vehicles accurately track mileage and eliminate manual data entry errors. Their “Green Fleet” solutions monitor fault codes and fuel consumption and keep each vehicle up-to-date and well maintained, resulting in fewer emissions.

Additional FleetPoint SME features include in-vehicle navigation with schedules, stop and idle reports, engine performance reports, fuel usage and idle reporting, maintenance reminders and maintenance scheduling aids.

Because the application is Web-based, a variety of features can be activated based on the customer’s needs. For example, some clients use the work order system with two-way messaging capability, which allows real-time communication between drivers in the field and fleet managers. FleetPoint co-founder Chris Carver states, “The ability of the system to organize the information from the drivers and import it directly to the fleet management system reduces the work load of the fleet manager.”

With more than 4,000 vehicles, the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) needs a reliable, accurate solution to manage and maintain its fleet. FleetPoint’s real-time information allows them to make the right decisions regarding road and highway maintenance operations year-round. According to Owen Hasson, MoDOT’s highway superintendent, “We need to back up those decisions with solid supporting data. Tracking our operations with FleetPoint provides us significant and valuable data.”

FleetPoint works closely with each municipality, from initial installation, to training, to ongoing technical support. With FleetPoint, agencies can effectively track their assets; control PM scheduling; monitor warranty issues; and access real-time, up-to-date mileage reports. According to Carver, FleetPoint software manages incoming information from the vehicles and provides connectivity of this information to a number of existing fleet management applications.

Because pricing for FleetPoint software is on a per vehicle basis, costs are kept affordable for smaller agencies. Carver states that the software and service are available on a monthly basis for under $30 per month, per vehicle, including all hosting and air time. And unlike some of their competitors, there is no large licensing fee. FleetPoint is committed to providing unsurpassed customer service, and clients can submit support requests via e-mail or telephone.

Tracker Software Corp.

Since 1996, Tracker Software Corp. has been providing reliable custom software systems for asset and fleet management. Its flagship product PubWorks is specifically designed for the public sector and serves a number of municipalities and counties throughout the United States and Canada. This easy-to-use, fully-integrated software system is the ideal solution for both small and large agencies. It allows fleet personnel to quickly manage vehicles, equipment and parts, eliminating the need for special IT staff.

PubWorks is available as a Windows-based program and as a client server application that runs on an agency’s LAN. With PubWorks, users can access many different windows concurrently within the program, allowing them to effectively manage all aspects of fleet maintenance, from work orders to job costing.

This public works solution offers a comprehensive Asset Management core program that covers Asset and Equipment Inventories, Job Costing, Employees and Crews, Funds and Purchase Orders, and Cost Analysis and Inventory Management Reports.

Additional enhancements to the core system are available for purchase, such as the Service Requests module and the Fleet Maintenance module. These add-ons simplify the tracking of employee assignment progress, requests for service and call classification. All fleet activity is monitored, including maintenance costs, service records and parts inventory management.

Also included is a user-friendly PM scheduling feature and automated fuel system interfacing. According to Pete Anzalone, president of Tracker Software Corp., many of their customers start out with the core PubWorks package and add other modules as they become familiar with the software.

Anzalone points out, “Users tend to be excellent mechanics and fleet managers, but using a PC might not be their favorite thing. We’ve made the process of using PubWorks simple and straightforward, while at the same time providing power and comprehensive functionality.”

The Platte County, Mo., Public Works Department began using PubWorks in 2006 to manage its fleet. Prior to that, the department used DeJaWin, a software program that downloads and transfers files which can then be formatted in a Windows application, such as Microsoft Word or Excel. They opted for the core modules of the PubWorks software, which to date fulfill the department’s specific needs. According to Office Manager Kim Bedsaul, employees easily transitioned to the new program. Overall, she is very pleased with PubWorks and states, “The training and support continue to be invaluable.”

In March 2004, the Public Works division of Green Cove Springs, Fla., purchased PubWorks software to manage its vehicles and equipment. Up to that point, they had used an in-house program created in Microsoft Access. They decided on the PubWorks core program along with some add-on modules, which included Work Orders and Fleet Maintenance.

The department’s senior secretary, Connie Wainwright, said that employees readily adjusted to the user-friendly software. She is very pleased with the system’s overall performance, as well as the company’s training and support. Wainwright states that the PubWorks staff “is always willing to help us with any problems [and offers suggestions] on how to make the data system work better for our use.” PubWorks software costs range from $3,500 to $9,500 depending on configuration and options.

Susan Geoghegan is a freelance writer living in Naples, Florida. She can be reached at sgeofl@embarqmail.com.

Published in Police Fleet Manager, May/Jun 2010

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