Jim Demczak and his wife, Sharon, started their pumping business from scratch seven years ago. RME Concrete Pumpers, Inc currently employs a diversified fleet of eight small pickup trucks and 16 big rigs with three more on the way.
The Demczaks found the perfect telematics partner with National Fleet Tracking (NFT), which keeps their business running smoothly and at peak efficiency each day. RME has used NFT for three years, but not before trying other systems—and with little luck.
THE OTHER GUYS
Although a little smaller than other telematics providers, Demczak appreciates the way NFT runs its business. Before using NFT, RME’s telematics provider outsourced aspects of its service. This caused a strain on the Demczaks’ business and their patience.
“You have a good salesperson come in, sells you a product, and promises you the world,” Demczak says about other telematics systems. “And then when you have an issue, you’re dealing with a telemarketer from someplace that’s around the world that you can’t get anything resolved with.”
NFT, based out of Glen Rose, Texas, houses technical sales, billing, etc. under one roof. “It’s very easy and convenient to be able to handle any problems that may occur,” Demczak says.
There are about 500 companies across the country and in Canada that rely on NFT to complete a job on a daily basis. Each of these companies is different and requires its own customized telematics solution. And NFT delivers.
“We’re good with working with small businesses,” Patrick Locke, general manager of NFT, says. “So if they have something they want to do, we’ll work with them to do a custom programming of our device to meet the needs of our customer.”
NFT offers fleet management solutions through telematics devices that are installed inside fleet vehicles. NFT offers devices designed for different pieces of equipment: devices for enclosed cabs, trailers, and generator sets and devices for equipment with non-enclosed cabs. The devices used for non-enclosed cabs are waterproof and weatherproof.
“There are companies that only do tracking on smaller vehicles,” Locke says. “But quite a few will do vehicles, but not assets. NFT system is set up to handle everything from trailers to backhoe’s to passenger cars to big rigs, all seamlessly in one platform.”
Devices are equipped with a backup battery and will trigger a notification to the fleet manager if it has been unplugged. Managers also have the option of assigning a key fob to individual drivers so that the manager knows who’s driving a vehicle at any given time. This gives managers true control and awareness of their fleet.
Aspects of the NFT platform that Demczak appreciates are accident investigation and monitoring of driver behavior.
Once, a driver in the Demczaks’ fleet was cited for speeding but claimed he did no wrong. “I’d go onto the GPS, and there’s a thing called the breadcrumb trail which basically allows you to see an update every two minutes of what your vehicle was doing and where it’s at,” Demczak says. “And I go, ‘Well here you are on I-45 South in a 55 mph zone, and it says you’re doing 73 mph.’ So it’s actually helped us many different ways with accident investigation where our employees are.”
Another RME driver was cited for failure to stay in lane because of an accident. Thankfully, Demczak purchased dash cameras from NFT. “We were able to pull the camera system down and actually show where his turn signal was on,” Demczak says. “And he wasn’t on his electronics, no radio on. He was coming over to the other lane, a truck came up behind him at a high rate of speed, tried to beat him around the lane, and it wound up to be the other guy’s fault. Now we have documentation to be able to go in and fight that.”
But NFT’s services go well beyond driver monitoring. Locke says one commercial landscaping business in Waco, Texas, uses NFT to track its trucks and zero-turn mowers. NFT’s equipment packages include anti-theft, hours of service, and maintenance. Fleet managers receive reports on their equipment such as usage reports. This allows a manager to see which equipment is used more than others and might prompt them to sell a piece of equipment if the report shows it isn’t needed by the company.
Demczak says the NFT platform’s ease of use and accuracy allows their company to work as efficiently as possible.
“There’s very little downtime that we’ve noticed in the system after three years, where the other company was always having updates or glitches. I have yet to see one,” Demczak says.
The Demczaks use NFT to track both big rigs and pickups, and NFT’s platform allows them to track both easily with vehicle lists and numbers, showing exact location. Demczak currently has NFT’s tracking to refresh every two minutes, but he can manually change the refresh down to every 5 seconds.
“The overlay of satellite imaging to map imaging is spot on,” Demczak says. “Where it says my truck is tends to be where my truck is. Which the other company was not (accurate).”
Adding to that ease of service, NFT recently launched an app, NFT MobiPro, to be used on mobile devices. The app integrates into tracking and dispatching, giving managers the ability to create a workday schedule for individual drivers and trucks. The app allows for customization of fuel purchases, job notes, photos, and electronic signatures.
But to Demczak, perhaps the most important aspect of NFT’s service is the company’s support system.
“I’m a person that is a very loyal customer of anybody that I deal with,” Demczak says. “As I tell my vendors, it’s not about the pricing. It’s not anything more than service … And I will say this company has the best customer service out of any of my vendors that I deal with, and I’ve been in my own business now going on 30 years. I’ve dealt with a lot of different people. I can pick the phone up, I can get answers. If they say they’re going to call you back, they call you back.”
Demczak says he can even approach members of NFT’s team at a trade show and they’ll have answers for him before he even gets back to his office.
“The customer service by far is the best I’ve ever seen,” Demczak says. “It’s hard to find a product anymore that has a quality product and service to go along with it. They truly give you the Texas-style courtesy of ‘What can we do for you?’”
A reason for that great customer service is possibly due to the fact that NFT doesn’t provide services based on contracts. “We have to earn your business every month,” Locke says. “We form relationships with customers. They’re not just XYZ customers. Our salespeople follow up with our customers on a minimum of a once a month basis. We take the time to find out what issue our customer is trying to solve with the technology we offer, and we will work with them to do that.”
There is a plethora of fleet tracking systems out there, but National Fleet Tracking tends to have its strengths, and the Demczaks’ business couldn’t run efficiently without it. NFT has truly earned RME Concrete Pumpers, Inc’s business with its ease of use, accuracy, and Texas-style courtesy.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Find out more about National Fleet Tracking, visit www.nationalfleettracking.com.
MODERN WORKTRUCK SOLUTIONS: APRIL 2019 ISSUE
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