Brett Wilson, Group Development Manager with International Energy Services (IES), knows first hand how the Intermec CN3 hand-held computer from Gamma Solutions is making life easier for Australia’s fuel tanker drivers.
IES is the parent company of five logistics companies including Cootes Transport Group which delivers LPG, fuels and bitumen for companies such as Shell, BP, Caltex, Exxon Mobil, Elgas and Origin Energy.
‘It’s a hazardous business’, Brett Wilson says. ‘The massive tankers need to be treated with respect and the drivers have enough on their hands, without filling in mountains of paperwork at each stop.’
‘With the old paper-based system, drivers had to pick up their manifest from the contract manager at the depot, do all their deliveries and hand write all the details. That’s obviously time-consuming and not efficient.
‘The pick-up and delivery points can be hours apart, so the old paper-based system put all the responsibility on the driver to make sure the paperwork got back to the depot. Even then, it could sit on someone’s desk for days or get lost in the paper shuffle.’
The Intermec CN3 hand-held computer is now installed in all 360 Cootes tankers around the country. The system uses the mobile phone network to lodge data directly into Cootes’ back-end Freight 2020 system. All the driver has to do is input the details of the delivery and it is immediately sent back to the central system in real time.
‘A safe workplace is our number one priority. The Intermec CN3 gives drivers the sort of safety information that ensures a safe work environment,’ Brett Wilson explained.
The system also includes site maps providing drivers with information on where to enter and load, plus warnings about potential hazards such as low overhangs.
‘We had tested a number of products but they were old technology,’ Brett Wilson recalls. ‘When I came on board it was my job to find the best fit for the business. The Intermec CN3 came out above anything else. Firstly it was a high performance product.
‘Secondly, the price was right. Finally, and most importantly, Gamma Solutions was able to offer national level support. That meant that if the hand-helds did need servicing they could be serviced locally.’ Brett Wilson says it is also saving many hours of paper-based drudgery for truckies. ‘We’re certainly not looking back now.’