Transportergipfel am 04.07.2019

With Leather & Beef in pole position

Already for the second time ARI Fleet Germany GmbH and Wollnikom GmbH had invited to the Transporter Summit. This time, the Curbs Club Cologne in the south of Cologne offered the perfect location for an informal exchange about this special area of functional vehicles. Fleet management was also on site again.

Fleet management is not just fleet management, especially not if you have transporters and other commercial vehicles in your fleet. This is already evident in the purchase of new vehicles: Configurators have been established for ordering passenger cars for years, which can relieve the fleet manager of part of his work. In the case of functional vehicles, however, such configurators reach their limits because, in addition to the vehicle model, they also deal with bodywork, installations and conversions. As if that weren’t enough, fleets of vans and commercial vehicles usually have very special adaptations that make every fleet an individual case. Henning Schick, European Sales Director at ARI Fleet Germany, emphasized at the very beginning of the Transporter Summit how fleet managers from this sector can still be supported and what developments transporter and commercial vehicle fleets have undergone in other countries.

With Christoph R. Hartel, Managing Director Sales & Operations at FLS GmbH, an expert led the participants into the world of algorithms and automation. Fast Lean Smart, the detailed name of the technology leader in the field of automated logistics and field service planning, had already set itself the task 25 years ago of managing processes holistically in accordance with the company’s objectives and not just mapping partial aspects. At the Transporter Summit, Hartel dedicated his presentation to the question of how service and logistics processes can be optimized. He made it clear that the customer or even the end customer are today the central drivers for these processes. In a scenario, Hartel explained that desired delivery or service dates are now a common requirement for end customers, and he showed how algorithms can be used to optimally organize them. Derived from this scenario, the FLS expert also addressed the dynamic optimization of travel and downtimes: Using the specially developed PowerOpt algorithm, time windows can be planned in advance, which can then be analyzed and adjusted using telematics interfaces. At the same time, the algorithm also processes a so-called chemistry index, i.e. the sympathy factor, in order to increase customer satisfaction in this area as well.

Claus Wollnik, Managing Director of Wollnikom GmbH, also dealt with the subject of telematics: “In the corresponding workshop, the participants reported on their experience in integrating telematics solutions into their fleets. One fleet manager explained that the switch to MAN made the introduction of this technology somewhat easier, because the systems were free of charge and it was much easier to argue in front of the works council and the users about the advantages such as increasing the safety level and optimising tours. Nevertheless, one would like more information about what actually happens with the data. Henning Schick mentioned another benefit for which this data could be used, but has not yet been used in Germany – the anonymous transfer to fleet management providers. This would make it possible not only to better plan service intervals, but also to tailor leasing contracts more precisely. In summary, Claus Wollnik explained that “transparency is the key to giving more importance to added value in the discussions on integration. This is the only way to ensure that the benefits of telematics solutions also reach the user.

After a break to strengthen himself at the buffet and to internalize the previously heard things, Stefan Stierl, Specialist Supply Chain & Commercial Vehicles at ARI Fleet Germany, presented a new approach to procurement and demand analysis for commercial vehicles. In the Vehicle Supply Chain, a service that ARI Fleet already offers in North America, customers are presented with vehicles that are ideally suited for the previously jointly defined area of use. This is intended to relieve the fleet manager of a great deal of work, as the analysis in the run-up to the purchase of a new commercial vehicle can take up a lot of time. In addition to the suitable vehicle model, this includes superstructures, installations and often also customer-specific requirements. At the same time, ARI Fleet also takes care of procurement, i.e. the coordination of all parties involved and time management, which also means possible downtimes due to delays.