HOW PORTHAUL SAVES MONEY AND TIME WITH A SINGLE FLEET MANAGEMENT SOLUTION
As a bulk transport business, Porthaul’s remit varies. One truck might be transporting fertiliser or grain, while another will be carrying live produce or limestone. This range of activities means it not only operates a large fleet of trucks, but also plant and heavy hauling equipment, logging vehicles, refrigerated vans and earthmoving machinery. With so much going on, the business wanted to better manage all these moving parts, and make sure it was getting maximum value out of each one.
Integrating all systems into one
As a long-time user of Teletrac Navman’s GPS tracking solution, Porthaul made the decision to shift all its fleet management requirements to a single system. “At one stage we had three different fleet management solutions across the business, so it was a nightmare to manage”, James Williamson, Operations Manager at Porthaul, says. “That’s why we decided to switch to Teletrac Navman for everything. It’s a lot better having every truck operating on the same platform. We’d tried most of the solutions out there and Teletrac Navman was by far the easiest to use.”
Switching to one fleet management solution allowed for greater efficiency across the whole business. “It saves us a heap of time, not having to look at three different systems and match up the data”, Ange Marlow, Administration Manager says. “It was also a very smooth roll-out process. It was well planned and executed, and communication throughout was excellent.”
Putting money back in their pocket
While Porthaul was anticipating the efficiency benefits of moving all its tasks to the one platform, there was one unexpected advantage. As the business does a lot of forestry work, it regularly travels off-road, as well as operating auxiliary equipment and machinery. This means the business is eligible for rebates on fuel used for those purposes – but only if a claim is made.
“Before implementing Teletrac Navman’s FTC Manager, we weren’t tracking or claiming off-road use at all, it was too hard. We weren’t even aware a rebate was a possibility”, Marlow says. With the support of Teletrac Navman partner PPM Tax and Legal, Porthaul kicked off with a four-retrospective review of its fuel tax credit claims, going back to 2014. It received a massive six-figure refund in fuel tax rebates that had previously gone unclaimed. “Managing fuel tax is an integral part of our business, so it only made sense to implement a solution that makes it so much easier”, Williamson says.
Living up to safety standards
Porthaul’s mission statement says its number one objective is to achieve 100 per cent safety and customer satisfaction. So, having a system to look more closely at driver behaviour, fatigue and safety breaches was a massive advantage. “We’ve seen a huge decrease in fatigue breaches, using the electronic log books. They let us better keep track of driver hours”, Marlow says. “We match up the real data with the physical logbooks and the drivers are getting better and better at logging their time and maintaining safe hours.”
Managing compliance was also important, particularly monitoring dangerous behaviours, Williamson says. “We’ve noticed a dramatic reduction in speeding. We get notifications straight away when drivers are speeding over a certain limit, and we then notify them they’ve breached our policies. It’s helped drivers to get better at controlling speed.”
Making the tech part of the team
To get the most out of the system, Porthaul recognised it needed to build the technology into its company culture. “This kind of tech is going to become an everyday thing for heavy vehicles, so driver education was very important to us”, Williamson says. Teletrac Navman provided support to operators throughout the implementation, to help them get up to speed. “After some time, it has just become second nature. Every new person that comes on board gets taught the system and run through how it operates. It’s something that’s used across our entire business so it’s important that everyone understands what it’s used for and how to use it.”
Building the system into every day processes provides Porthaul with huge productivity benefits. “We’ve replaced a lot of paper-based tasks”, Marlow says. For example, the pre-trip checks of vehicles, which allow drivers to identify any defects or repairs, are all electronic now. Drivers complete a checklist on a tablet, before the information is sent straight to the back-office. “They can do it quickly and we’ve then got all the details on file, rather than having to dig out the paperwork. It’s much easier to refer back to or pull a historical report if needed."
Staying with Teletrac Navman for the long-haul
Porthaul is already looking at how to get more value out of the Teletrac Navman system. “We’re going to start looking at how we use the solution to record weight and capture vehicles over the weight limit, which will not only streamline mass management but also help with compliance”. - Angela Marlow, Porthaul
Overall, the system is now a trusted part of Porthaul’s day-to-day operations. “It’s given us the benefits of a reliable GPS system and a proven way to manage fuel tax credits, while being easy to use. Most importantly, it just lets us be more productive as a business.”