A cloud-connected forklift adds tremendous efficiencies to how fast and easily you collect and manage maintenance, inspection, and training processes and information.
While inspection, maintenance, and training are essential prerequisites of any materials handling operation, they are often viewed as chores that slow down operations and get in the way of getting more work done. Ignore any one of these three chores though and your equipment or business might suffer catastrophic consequences. The costs of downtime and repairs for an inoperable forklift are extremely high.
The Cloud-Connected Forklift Advantage
‘Simpler, faster, and more consistent’, is the short answer to how a cloud-connected Forklift Safety System (FSS) can help with inspection, maintenance, and training duties. Referencing the VIA Mobile360 Forklift Safety System as our sample FSS, let’s break down how easily digital inspection benefits are achieved.
The VIA Mobile360 Forklift Safety System comprises three interconnected key components for success. First, the actual sensor/hardware/software package that uses AI to sense and intelligently convert the environment and vehicle usage data. Second, the VIA WorkX App which allows operators and managers to simply calibrate the FSS equipment and enter report data. Third, the VIA WorkX Connect Cloud Management Service which aggregates, presents and manages the data from the FSS package and mobile app usage.
In simple terms that means the FSS is automatically collecting the vehicle usage data that will inform your decisions for creating reports and reporting policies, the mobile app user can fill in the report and the cloud can then present, customize and store the inspection, maintenance, or training reports required.
Accountability, Control, Efficiency and Flexibility
Without accountability as to whether inspection, maintenance, and training tasks are actually being performed, organizations open themselves up to errors, arguments and finger-pointing. Increased stress can be given to the forklift operator for equipment damage that might have, for example, been avoided with proper maintenance procedures. Someone needs to own the responsibility of making sure the maintenance schedule is adhered to.
A forklift operator, inspector, or manager who logs into the VIA WorkX mobile app to fill out the required report has an identifiable, time-stamped record of their doing so and negates the need for additional paperwork. That decreases stress and creates efficiency for the person filling out the report and also for the manager logging into the cloud interface looking to check the details of the report or to confirm if it’s been done at all. Document control benefits extend to the entire management team as, with the correct permissions settings, Accounting or HR could also access the report documents in an organized common storage area.
The VIA WorkX Connect Cloud Management Service interface includes default inspection reports based on OSHA guidelines to make getting started with cloud-based inspections easy, but also offers the ability to create your own custom report forms. Creating your own custom inspection reports means you can tailor them to specific pieces of equipment with unique capabilities or frequency requirements.
Tapping out a maintenance inspection in the mobile app confirms who the person doing the inspection is and gives you the flexibility to create different maintenance check criteria for different vehicles.
Flexible training reports mean you might introduce and require different training exercises for different levels of driver ability or experience. Your warehouse floor plan has its own unique challenges for navigation, so there might be maneuvers you want your operators to complete that are exclusive to your space.
Time Is Money
Materials handling is a world where time literally equals money. All duties that don’t contribute to the faster storage and processing of goods and materials are speed bumps to productivity, efficiency and profitability. The cloud-connected FSS makes inspections, maintenance and training faster and smoother for operators, trainers, and management. The benefits pay for themselves.