Crown releases upgraded forklift fleet management tool

Crown’s latest release, InfoLink 3.0 is a new version of its highly successful wireless forklift fleet management tool, putting you in charge

Crown releases upgraded forklift fleet management tool
Crown releases upgraded forklift fleet management tool

August 15, 2011

Crown’s latest release, InfoLink 3.0 is a new version of its highly successful wireless forklift fleet management tool, which
puts you in charge and can be hosted on your servers or Crown’s.

According to the leading equipment supplier, InfoLink 3.0 raises the bar in the growing materials handling industry technology sector.

Crown Equipment InfoLink Product Manager Maria Schwieterman says InfoLink 3.0 uses the latest technology for fast access to the information needed for both on-the-spot decisions and long-term planning.

"It is the most comprehensive and easy-to-use system available today. You don’t even need to be in the warehouse to get a comprehensive view of what is going on within the facility," she says.

The dashboard-based Crown-designed and built fleet management system covers six key areas of forklift, operator and fleet performance including: compliance, impacts, productivity, utilisation, energy and service.

A new option for the forklift operator interface is compatibility with Windows-based vehicle-mounted computers (VMCs).

Increased competition in industries such as FMCG and manufacturing has led many in the material handling field to focus on efficiency, utilisation, availability and optimisation of assets.

Leading companies are realising information generated at the forklift level can be transformed to enable managers to focus on operational and performance issues quickly and efficiently to achieve greater profits.

Initially launched in Australia in 2007, InfoLink is now an embedded system in over 1,800 local vehicles used by over 85 Australian companies in 115 sites.

General Manager Marketing at Crown Equipment Australia Craig Kenchington says InfoLink has continually broken new ground when it comes to delivering operationally-critical information to business managers.

"InfoLink represents the answer to so many previously asked questions such as ‘where are my vehicles?’, ‘who is operating them?’, and ‘how are they performing?’," he says.

"The release of version three of this comprehensive fleet management system brings significant advancements in what information can be captured and how it can be displayed, in real time, to warehouse and operations managers," Kenchington says.

InfoLink 3.0 retains the original productivity, safety and operational reporting functions including such aspects as operator certification, collision alerts and component condition, but adds a range of further features that take it to a new level.

"There has always been a degree of frustration between warehouse management and IT management relating to loading new software systems onto internal servers," Kenchington explains.

"So with InfoLink 3.0 we are offering an option; customers can either run it on their own systems or choose to deploy it as a hosted service residing on our own secure servers."

Another new feature of InfoLink 3.0 is the way it allows managers to avoid ‘information overload’ by having the ability to determine their own reporting parameters.

"Previously, managers were able to see all information as it was transmitted from each vehicle to their computer screens," Kenchington says.

"While all the information is valuable, it’s not necessary to see everything all at once.

"What Crown has done with InfoLink 3.0 is to give managers the ability to determine for themselves what is required as a priority and then the ability to drill down to see the granular details if they desire."

InfoLink 3.0 is equipped with six dashboards covering key areas of operator and fleet performance – compliance, impacts, productivity, utilisation, energy and service.

The InfoLink interface uses colour-coded opportunity indicators that provide managers an easy-to-understand look at whether their trucks meet established goals (green), require attention (yellow), or need immediate action (red).

The new productivity dashboard reports metrics such as average lift/travel time per log in hour, average speed, average travel distances and operator log-in status.

The energy dashboard provides key information for both electric and IC forklifts. For example, fleets with electric forklifts gain access to reports showing the number of battery changes, early battery changes, and short charge cycles, among other information.

The service dashboard reports the impact of truck downtime on operations as well as providing a direct link to service information.

When a user clicks on the recorded truck event code within InfoLink, the system takes them directly to a troubleshooting section for that event in the Crown service and parts manual.

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