When it comes to conducting an inspection, a checklist is the first thing that we think of. While checklists have been in use for years, the ways in which we use them have changed with time. Gone are the days when we had to rely on manual checklists for our fleet and transport. We can’t waste paper anymore in a world where the environment is seeing new challenges across the globe. Excel sheets, too, are not working anymore as they require a lot of manual work.
In this digital era, what we need is software that offers 360-degree digital solutions for the transport industry and takes care of all the needs related to the fleet. A fleet management software system can go a long way in managing and improving the safety of operations by automating the inspection process. The hassle of filling the right form manually, submitting it to the right people, and waiting for corrective actions not only wastes time and resources but also causes incomplete inspections, delays, and incorrect documentation. On other hand, with just a smartphone in your pocket, a digital inspection makes it quicker to flag issues and take positive actions on the ground.
Here is more about conducting digital inspections for your fleet and transport:
1. Use carefully crafted checklists
There are many checklists available on the Internet for each use case. However, as a transport company, you should pick checklists which are made after research on various competitors. These checklists should be drafted as per your specific needs and purposes. They should address all the key areas and promote best practices, and at the same adhere to compliance rules. By studying the data received from these checklists, your team should be able to find weak spots, track the performance of employees, plan for the future, improve the supply chain and enhance overall operations.
These checklists can make safety and health inspections, warehouse walk-throughs, etc easier for you so that your business can achieve its EHS and fleet management goals. Good checklists also empower your employees to understand issues better so that they can flag issues faster and prompt actions in the future.
Some of the most common checklists to use are the Heavy vehicle inspection checklist, Vehicle accident report checklist, Driver assessments, Incident reporting, Warehouse safety checklist, etc. You can access all these checklists on Pulse library. You can also customize these checklists further by using the smart checklist builder on Pulse and start doing the inspection process.
2. Make incident reporting easier
By making incident reporting easier, you can improve the quality of overall inspections and reduce the costs for breakdowns and repairs. While manual incident reporting has many limitations, with EHS software like Pulse, you can easily empower your workers and drivers to flag issues and fasten the process of recovery for flaws.
Effective reporting not only allows employers to become your eyes and ears on the ground but also creates a foundation for your overall EHS management. Once an issue or near-miss situation is reported by a ground employee or driver, managers can do risk assessment and root cause analysis using checklists and also, assign positive actions quickly in real-time. On one single screen, your team can keep a record of inspections, independent incidents reported, and corrective actions. Your inspections can’t get better than this. On Pulse, your team can also flag issues without the Internet as your drivers may not always have a connection.
Incident reporting is one of the most efficient ways according to industry experts to maintain world-class safety culture in transport and logistic industries.
3. Streamline the process
By using EHS software that provides a checklist library, quick incident reporting, and smart action planning, your business can streamline the whole inspection process. When issues are converted into action in real-time with just a few clicks on a single platform, your inspections are bound to be more effective and successful.
To streamline the process furthermore on the software, it is crucial for your team to first plan a strategy for EHS and fleet management. Schedule inspections daily/weekly/monthly depending on the requirements. Invite all members of your team on the software so that they can be notified easily when an inspection is assigned to them. As soon as the inspector submits the report with visual proofs and annotations, managers can assign corrective actions for the flaws and deficiencies in real-time by giving deadlines. With this, defects will not linger and actions will not get delayed with thousands of lost emails. With streamlining on software like Pulse, data and information doesn’t get lost and you get to bridge the gap between issues and solutions. In the end, since all reports are available on one platform, you can always revisit old inspections to track and analyze performance and insights.
This whole process stops the reoccurrence of the same mistakes, flaws, and deficiencies. It allows you to track performance and have more visibility.
4. Empower employees and drivers
If your employees don’t know the best safety practices and what the company’s goals are in terms of EHS then it might become difficult to conduct efficient inspections. Thus, it is important to bring everyone on board on the journey of creating a safe work culture – especially for drivers. They should know what a well-functioning vehicle is otherwise they will not be able to flag issues when they encounter one. And as we have discussed above, incident reporting is a crucial part of overall inspections.
Conduct orientations to educate and train drivers before they get on board and start to drive. This will also help employees take quick corrective actions the moment they observe a problem. Drivers can’t always wait for corrective actions by other team members.
5. Keep a track of compliance rules
For each state, rules and regulations related to vehicle and transport compliance can be different. Inspections can be ineffective if a company doesn’t show vigilance towards changing regulations. For both employees’ safety and adhering to compliance, it is important to use updated checklists.
Some of the inspections can also check if the drivers have all the required paperwork and documentation.