NCPS (Nationwide Controlled Parking Systems) is the largest corporate managed parking services operator in the Republic of Ireland, managing the requirements of 485 clients at over 1,000 locations nationwide. Customers include Irish Rail, University College Dublin and Luas. In addition to its core management services, NCPS also provides in house maintenance services within the parking environment such as signage and installations.
Facilitating these services was a major logistical challenge for the company, especially in terms of managing and assigning jobs to staff, acting on incidents quickly and consolidating job data into invoices and reports. Every item of maintenance and inspection work also had numerous paper forms associated with it. This entire process was time consuming, prone to human error and provided NCPS with no real time evidence (photos, geo tags, date and time stamps) should an incident or accident occur on site. This was a crucial requirement for the company’s legal department should it need to dispute a claim.
NCPS therefore wanted to digitise this entire process – giving its car park attendance staff the ability to complete all maintenance associated paperwork on smartphones whilst on site. It believed that by automating its internal processes it could benefit from increased staff productivity, reduce unnecessary resources and provide clients with an enhanced customer experience through better reporting, alerting and transparency of work completion.
Through an introduction via Vodafone Ireland and after careful consideration, NCPS opted for the mpro5 mobile enterprise platform, developed by Crimson Tide, to mobilise this process. NCPS felt that mpro5 was an ideal fit for its business needs, particularly since all services (mobile devices, software, Microsoft Azure cloud hosting, reporting, support and training) were included in the monthly subscription – meaning that the company could easily measure return on investment and avoid large upfront set up costs.
One platform, multiple applications
Another factor that particularly appealed to the company was the fact that the mpro5 platform offers a whole suite of applications under the one solution, available for use at no additional expense. For this very reason, NCPS has also taken advantage of mpro5’s powerful job management system for scheduling jobs to the smartphones of its parking and maintenance services team.
Job scheduling from mpro5
These recurrent jobs instruct field staff to complete vehicle inspection checks on NCPS’ fleet stock on a weekly basis. Attached to the job is a mobile vehicle checklist form. This mobile form guides the user through a series of questions which requires them to check, record and take photographic evidence of the functionality of all vehicle parts such as tires, air pressure and seat belts. Once complete, the user signs off the job on the device. This is automatically date and time stamped and the data is securely sent back to NCPS’ mpro5 cloud-based job management website, where it’s stored.
Completing mobile forms on smartphones
In addition to receiving and scheduling jobs on smartphone, staff from NCPS’ parking and maintenance services team use the mpro5 platform to complete mobile forms on Samsung Galaxy Note 3 devices whilst on site.
As part of the service, Crimson Tide worked with NCPS to create bespoke mobile forms that matched existing paperwork and workflow processes within the company. These included mobile forms for car park management checks, incident and accident reports and forms for ordering new uniform.
Dynamic and mandatory sections within mobile forms
All mobile forms have been built and configured to ensure that they are as user friendly, logical and fast to complete. With this in mind, many of NCPS’s mobile forms contain dynamic sections which enable users to complete them much more quickly than on paper since they are only presented with questions that are relevant to the scenario they are recording. For example, if a user records that there is damage on the vehicle’s exterior, they are swiftly prompted to take a photo for clarity.
Real time evidence with a complete audit trail of work completion
mpro5 automatically captures the date and time of any job or mobile form that’s completed on smartphone along with the exact location of the user via geo tagging. These features, along with photos, are particularly important for NCPS, especially with regards to its incident and accident capture forms. Unfortunately within the industry, assaults and abuse towards car parking attendants is a common occurrence. Having the ability to capture all details regarding these events in real time is a huge benefit to NCPS should its legal department need evidence to dispute false claims.
Secure data synchronisation and storage via the cloud
Once complete, all audit data synchronises with NCPS’s mpro5 scheduling and management website – hosted in the cloud with Microsoft Azure – where it’s securely stored. As soon as a job or mobile form has been completed, an email alert is fired out automatically to managerial staff, including a link from where they can download the report.
From the mpro5 scheduling website, office staff can also analyse the data in real time and run reports to compare data across the entire organisation, such as determining which customer sites are performing best, total audit numbers completed by staff over set time frames and any areas of the business that need improving.
Improved client experience and satisfaction
With mpro5, NCPS has been able to give customers access to its mpro5 job management website via a secure portal login from where they can view completed job data in real time. This has led to increased customer satisfaction through improved transparency and trust between NCPS and its clients.
It has also helped to give the company an edge above competition since its offering clients a unique service and experience that’s not necessarily available elsewhere.
Furthermore, customers have been particularly impressed by NCPS’s immediate reporting services. Prior to mpro5 it would take around two to three days before office staff received completed job reports from drivers. Now these are submitted automatically at the end of their shifts which has significantly increased the speed as which NCPS can report and invoice clients.
Real time evidence
This feature has been of great value to the company, since it has been able to provide its legal department with real time evidence should it need to contest any false claims made against the organisation.
Significant reduction in costs
By mobilising its workflows and paper-based processes, NCPS has benefitted from significant cost reductions through minimising paper, printing, post ink and fuel usage throughout the company.
More productive workforce
Additionally administration and managerial staff have more time to spend on more pressing business matters since they have removed reliance on manual processes within the business, such as double entry data and manual report creation. Field staff also have all the tools they need to complete jobs and associated paperwork on smartphone – no longer tying them to the office – thus meaning they have more time for customer on-site visits.
“mpro5 enables us to manage sites, collecting information from our drivers with ease, which in turn provides our management with the transparent reporting we require. We trust mpro5 and believe it is the way forward for our business.” Ann Byrne, Operations Director & MD Designate, NCPS.