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MiniPlus Article
August 01 2018
By The routeone team

The routeone team is dedicated to bringing you the latest bus & coach industry news, views, jobs and more.

CheckedSafe: Fleet compliance the modern way

Timely reporting of defects and the work carried out to rectify them is imperative. Going digital is a way to simplify that process, as shown by CheckedSafe’s cloud-based system for drivers and managers alike

CheckedSafe extends from driver defect reports to rectification scheduling

Technology-based solutions for vehicle checks and defect reporting are legion, but CheckedSafe does not market its platform merely on those points. Instead, it is promoted as a comprehensive vehicle compliance management product.

The system is in two parts. One is an app for drivers for use when performing walk-round checks. Second is an online dashboard through which fleet managers can see the status of vehicles and details of all defects and subsequent rectification action.

“A misconception is that CheckedSafe is an app provider. We are not. We sell vehicle compliance,” says Operations Manager Jason Lee.

CheckedSafe is a DVSA Earned Recognition approved supplier. It places as much focus on the back office aspect of its compliance system as it does the app. Considerable thought has gone into both, with an emphasis on simplicity across the board.

The driver’s friend

Drivers carry out checks using the app, which can incorporate a customised template. If the vehicle is off the road, or is not required that day, a suitable note can be appended to its record.

A number of things are present within the app to ensure that checks are done properly, something that is particularly relevant when the vehicle is away from base. “Every check is date, location and time stamped. The operator can also see both the time between sections and the overall duration of the process,” says Jason.

“Also, uniquely to CheckedSafe, we use the accelerometer within the device to check movement, allowing the driver’s position to be monitored.” A camera function is part of the app, allowing pictures of defects to be submitted.

Once the electronic check is uploaded, the Transport Manager (TM) receives an email notification of any defects, as does anyone else within the operator as appropriate. Rectification work can be recorded and defects can then be either cleared directly, or later if they are serviceable. “We focus on exceptions, allowing the TM to concentrate on managing defects. All nil reports are stored within the system,” says Jason.

When a roadworthy defect is reported, parts can be ordered and waiting

The back office

Data for each vehicle is held on CheckedSafe’s secure servers. A digital document vault and a dedicated member of staff are made available by the supplier to help the operator’s maintenance records become paper-free.

Through the fleet dashboard, the TM gets an overall picture that can be broken down into many options for reporting purposes.

All manner of data can be harvested from the software, such as the circumstances of each individual check, vehicle defect patterns, and issues with individual drivers. Reports in either Excel or PDF format may be generated.

Rectification action taken can be demonstrated to DVSA. Where the defect is not a VOR matter, the CheckedSafe platform allows engineering staff to allocate it for attention when the vehicle returns to base.

“The benefit of that is that it allows parts to be ordered as soon as the defect has been identified,” adds Jason. “For example, a coach is away on tour and a defect it reported by the driver. The engineering manager can assess it as roadworthy or not. If roadworthy, parts can be waiting when the coach returns. The issue can be put right in time for service the following day.”

Simple and flexible

Some operators merely wish to use CheckedSafe as a simple defect reporting system, with no ER element or online vehicle management. Others prefer to take advantage of all the functionality that it delivers. That now extends to preventative maintenance inspection (PMI) records.

“We can provide comprehensive PMI support as we expand into fleet management. The system allows digital recording of inspection findings via an app, but we recognise that some operators oursource that work and a hybrid solution is available,” says Jason.

Auto-reminders for PMI schedules can be established, and when inspection records are uploaded, various reports are available. They allow the operator to analyse trends within the fleet, or to access a vehicle’s history.

Pounds, shillings and pence

What does CheckedSafe cost? Probably a lot less than you expect.

The only charge is £1 per vehicle, per week. That’s regardless of how much functionality the operator uses; the fee is the same whether CheckedSafe is utilised as a defect reporting system, or as a fully-integrated fleet management platform that works with ER. “That’s back to our philosophy of keeping things simple. There is no cost for ER compatibility or online document storage. £1 per week per vehicle is the flat charge,” says Jason.

That makes it a compelling proposition. As an indication of how much CheckedSafe would cost a small fleet, an operator of 20 vehicles would pay £1,040 per year for all the functionality outlined above. Checkedsafe claims that the paper-based equivalent would be £1,850.

But more importantly, CheckedSafe allows an operator to demonstrate its compliance. It also provides a legally defensible position should the worst happen. And you can’t put a price on that.

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