In the complex world of automotive logistics, shippers play a crucial role in ensuring that vehicles reach their destinations in pristine condition. As an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), your commitment to quality doesn’t end at the factory gates. The journey your vehicles take to reach their customers is just as vital. Unfortunately, the progress in reducing damages during rail transportation hasn’t always been as swift as we’d like it to be. This is where emerging technologies come to the rescue, offering unprecedented visibility and solutions to age-old problems.
AutoVentive Chief Technology Officer Lee Williams presented with Ford Vehicle Shipping Quality, Claims and Damage Prevention Team Lead Benjamin Pohl at the 130th Damage Prevention and Freight Claim Conference to address this concern. By utilizing our advanced telematics tracking system, you can minimize waste and improve damage prevention with increased real-time visibility of vehicle movement during the shipment process. Let’s examine how the AV Shadow ensures transporters treat products with the care manufacturers expect.
The Damage Conundrum
Damage, in all its forms, is unequivocally wasteful. Wasted time, effort, resources and even emotional investment. When vehicles suffer damages in transit, it’s not just the physical entities that bear the brunt – it’s also your brand reputation and customer relationships. Imagine investing countless hours in designing, engineering and manufacturing vehicles, only to have them marred during transportation. Damaged vehicles can translate into lost customers, compensation payouts and a tarnished brand image.
Transport delays are a universal pain point, and they’re compounded when damages occur. Delays in delivering vehicles lead to frustrated customers and logistical headaches. When damages are involved, the delays can seem insurmountable. This is why focusing on reducing damages and ensuring timely deliveries is imperative.
Hidden Costs of Waste
Waste doesn’t merely manifest in visible damages; it also infiltrates the intangible aspects of your business. From a damaged brand image to compensation for disappointed customers, the costs are staggering. OEMs often pay for waste in ways that aren’t apparent to the responsible parties – it’s a silent drain on resources that could have been used more effectively elsewhere.
Identifying and Addressing Issues
The key to progress is identifying and addressing the root causes of issues head-on. Collaborate with your partners to pinpoint weak spots in the transportation process. Emerging technologies, such as advanced telematics tracking systems, predictive analytics and real-time monitoring, can provide unprecedented visibility into the journey your vehicles undertake. Armed with this data, you can take informed steps to mitigate risks and enhance the overall shipping process.
Origin Auditing for Enhanced Vehicle Protection
Ensuring that vehicles are loaded and secured properly at the point of origin is critical in preventing damage during transit. The practice of origin auditing, which encompasses rigorous inspection and monitoring procedures, plays a pivotal role in safeguarding your vehicles. Here’s an expanded look at the strategies you can adopt for enhanced vehicle protection.
Origin Loading Inspection
Origin loading inspection serves as the first line of defense against potential damages. Rigorous checks must be conducted to verify that vehicles are being loaded in a manner that minimizes movement during transportation. This involves inspecting securement mechanisms, verifying proper vehicle spacing and confirming that no elements within the shipment might cause unintended damage.
No-Knock and Frequent Audits
Implementing a “no-knock” policy ensures that shipments are audited without prior notice, thereby maintaining a sense of vigilance and accountability among those responsible for loading and securing the vehicles. Frequent audits create a culture of consistency and adherence to loading protocols.
Real-Time Inspection Data
Leverage real-time inspection data to identify problematic origin-destination pairings. This data-driven approach helps pinpoint routes or locations prone to damage. By focusing resources on these areas, you can proactively address issues before they escalate.
Deploy Tracking Sensors
Apply a cutting-edge telematics tracking system, such as the AV Shadow, on random sample units within shipments. These sensors capture data on handling events, shocks and vibrations. By analyzing this data, you gain insights into where and how handling events are occurring, enabling you to take targeted actions to mitigate risks.
You can also expand telematics tracking beyond random samples to gather data on a broader range of routes. This approach helps identify instances of rough handling occurring during transit. The collected data can be used to develop preventive measures and work collaboratively with transport partners to improve handling practices.
Monitoring Transporter Practices
Once your vehicles leave the factory, their journey is entrusted to transporters who act as the bridge between your meticulous manufacturing process and the eager hands of customers. However, your responsibility as an OEM doesn’t end with the transfer of vehicles. It ensures that the same care and respect are maintained throughout the transportation journey. Vigilant monitoring, effective communication and a commitment to best practices can significantly minimize damages and protect your brand’s reputation.
The journey from manufacturer to customer can be long and fraught with potential risks. Transporters navigate various terrains, weather conditions and handling procedures that vehicles aren’t designed to endure. This is why implementing systems that enable real-time tracking and monitoring of your shipments is crucial. Advanced tracking systems, like the AV Shadow, provide insights into not only the vehicle’s location but also any sudden movements, shocks or vibrations that might suggest rough handling. By identifying issues as they occur, you can take swift corrective action to prevent further damage.
Transparent communication between your team and the transporters is the cornerstone of effective damage prevention. Establish clear guidelines on how your vehicles should be handled, loaded and secured during transit. Regularly engage with transport partners to ensure these guidelines are understood and followed. Encourage an open dialogue where both parties can share insights, concerns and best practices. This collaborative approach fosters a sense of shared responsibility for the vehicles’ well-being.
Audits and Inspections
Just as you conduct origin audits, periodic audits and inspections of transporter practices are equally essential. These checks can reveal deviations from the agreed-upon protocols and highlight areas needing improvement. If issues are identified, work closely with the transporters to address them promptly. Collaborative problem-solving strengthens the partnership and ensures that the lessons learned are integrated into future operations.
Identifying Patterns and Solutions
Collect and analyze data from monitoring systems, audits and inspections. Patterns in damages or rough handling incidents can provide valuable insights into recurring challenges. Use this data to identify root causes and develop tailored solutions. Whether it’s refining packaging, altering transport routes or adjusting handling procedures, data empowers you to make informed decisions that proactively address potential problems.
Solving Damage Concerns With The AV Shadow
Addressing concerns about damages during transit requires a multi-faceted approach that combines technology, data insights and collaboration. The AV Shadow is a revolutionary solution that not only offers tangible evidence of when damage is likely to occur but also delves into the root causes behind these incidents. Let’s explore how the AV Shadow is transforming the landscape of vehicle transportation by providing real-time tracking, safety enhancements and actionable insights.
The AV Shadow serves as an indisputable witness to what occurs during transit. With its advanced tracking technolgy, it captures data on handling events, shocks, vibrations and other key indicators. This provides tangible evidence of damage occurrences and their exact locations, eliminating the guesswork and uncertainty often associated with damage claims. By pinpointing damage hotspots, the AV Shadow allows you to swiftly focus resources on addressing the root causes.
Real-Time Tracking and Visibility
Gone are the days of uncertainty about the whereabouts of your consignments. The AV Shadow offers real-time tracking and visibility of your vehicles, no matter where they are in the transportation network. This level of insight enables you to track progress, anticipate delays and take timely actions to ensure safe and prompt delivery.
Harnessing the Power of Data
Data is at the heart of the AV Shadow’s capabilities – an invaluable resource for improving transportation practices. The user interface places the power of data analysis in your hands. It allows you to explore your data, uncover events and identify patterns that might be contributing to damages. Detailed 3D model representations, satellite views, contextual map overlays and heatmaps provide a comprehensive understanding of incidents and their surroundings. This empowers you to make informed decisions and supports theories about damage hotspots.
Collaborative Improvement Effort
A cornerstone of the AV Shadow’s success is its collaborative nature. Working closely with Ford Motor Company and other partners, the solution is constantly improving. By engaging with users and clients, the Autoventive team gathers valuable feedback that informs product enhancements. This commitment to refinement ensures that the solution evolves to meet the industry’s ever-changing demands.
Unveiling the Power of Visibility With AutoVentive
The AV Shadow is a transformative solution that tackles the challenge of damages during vehicle transportation head-on. By offering tangible evidence, real-time tracking, safety enhancements and data-driven insights, it provides a holistic approach to improving the transportation process. As the automotive industry evolves, the AV Shadow remains at the forefront, adapting and enhancing its capabilities to meet the needs of shippers, OEMs and partners alike.
AutoVentive is led by a graduated team of technology and logistics specialists that have collectively launched and/or managed over 50-yard management operations in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Continental Europe and the Middle East. This expertise is reflected in our products as they are built from a user perspective with first-hand knowledge of the challenges and solutions for our industry. Request a demo today to see how our solutions can increase operational efficiency and transform your business.
We are an industry-leading Software as a Service (SaaS) applications developer providing customized solutions to the automotive logistics industry. The company is part of Liberty Hill Equity Partners, LLC, a Cincinnati-based private equity firm, and Apex Holdings, LLC, a privately held holding company that operates across many industries and features an expanding portfolio of companies in the automotive logistics and transportation sectors. Apex Holdings is an active partner, providing critical strategic, financial and administrative support to the AutoVentive team.