Vehicle manufacturers often develop their products to supply fleets to public transport services. Retailers, corporations, and food chains also use vans, trucks, and buses in large numbers. Going by business norms, manufacturers have been providing their fleet users with a support and service system, which they can access in case of trouble with the vehicles.
The support services have traditionally used communication systems to receive information related to snags.However, informing the vehicle manufacturers, about the claim or troubleshooting,has been a function separately implemented.The results were obvious:
- Lack of verification capabilities on the part of the manufacturer
- Aftermarket losses to the manufacturer
- Conflicts stemming from misunderstandings and wrong expectations
The answer to such issues is a collaborative system encompassing the entire supply chain – fleet services, OEMs (original equipment manufacturers), and parts suppliers. Implementing such a system had been difficult before cloud technology emerged. However today, in spite of the evident complexity ina collaborative environment, the whole system can be deployed across the supply chain as an efficient software service – something that even eliminates errors and misunderstandings.
Now that it’s possible, OEM decision makers must know how to find the technology which will help them. Fortunately, software as a service is all about customizations. However, choosing the right developer entails checking for the right deployment of functions. Moreover, there is a need for agile development strategies which can accommodate the dynamism of a collaborative environment.
Since manufacturers are responsible for troubleshooting problems in the products they have manufactured, the responsibility of providing an efficient support system,for the same, lies with them. Thankfully nowadays, software companies can enablemanufacturers to provide holistic solutions to the transport services. Besides serving their warranty related issues, manufacturers can offer fleet management as part of the collaborative system. The choice rests with transport companies, but it will definitely result in greater transparency.
The integrated fleet management system should allow –
- Fleet drivers to notify their respective stations and service units
- Manufacturers to validate the issue under warranty and identify the root of the problem
- Service units to update the manufacturer with problems observed
- Manufacturers to notify service personnel about possible disputes
- Manufacturers to trace suppliers for cost recovery
- Fleet owners to find out about every development transparently
- Fleet ownersto augment their fleet without policy complications
Since the software that manufacturers deploy creates a collaborative environment, it makes sense to provide the fleet owner with a fleet management module, which will create a database of the activitiesundertaken with the fleet. Such a database will prove useful in an integrated system because data about distances covered and usage environmentsdo matter in warranty.
As a manufacturer, you can provide unquestionable value to your fleet clients by providing them a transparency-firstsystem. It should also be the sort of technology that improves its processing capabilities through algorithmic refinements. Efficiency in jobs and transparency across the supply chain will be the key benefits for all players in the system.
A warranty policy on fleet vehicles is issued by manufacturers in order to support the transport service, but more importantly to keep track of repair services, how much it cost, whether the fault happened due to a parts supplier and more. In the traditional set up, all this was possible, but loopholes would emerge like a can of worms rather frequently. With the benefits of modern technology, fleet management is really becoming quite simple to manage in spite of the vast logistics involved.
Preethivagadia is currently a Senior Business architect with the Service operations practice at a well-known IT Industry in Bangalore. She has worked in several process improvement projects involving multi-national teams for global customers. She has over 8 years of experience in Warranty Claim Managementand has successfully executed several projects in Logistics management, Logistics Integration, Reverse logistics, Warranty software and Programmatic Solutions.