The initial worry is not unexpected. Maintaining a fleet of commercial cars has always been essential to the business’s ability to remain successful. However, the other main issues raised by the poll are more recent occurrences.
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A printed handbook, likely brand-specific, was the go-to resource for vehicle maintenance knowledge not so long ago. In order to obtain information, technicians most likely thumbed through a sizable library of books on site. If a fleet had several nameplates, they most likely spent a lot of time looking for repair information online or over the phone.
From Paper to Online
Undoubtedly, times have changed. With the rapid advancement of complicated technology and the proliferation of several nameplates in fleets, such method would not function in the modern world. With younger technicians taking over from seasoned wrench turners, fleets need to maximize uptime.
It is now quicker and simpler for professionals to locate the information they need to fix modern cars thanks to online repair tools that pull data from many sources and are updated constantly. By expediting diagnostics and repairs, this not only helps boost production and efficiency but also lowers the possibility of do-overs and the downtime brought on by a failure.
Mitchell 1 was at the vanguard of the transition to computer-based diagnostic and repair software, starting on the automobile side of the repair sector. The industry-standard Mitchell Manuals made the move from printed books to CDs and DVDs, and in 2002 Mitchell 1 launched OnDemand5.com, the first web-based resource.
One of the earliest online sites for heavy truck repair information available to the aftermarket was Tractor-Trailer.net, which Mitchell 1 launched in 2006 after adapting its automotive technology platform for the commercial vehicle sector. If truck technicians had access to repair data for many Class 7 to 8 vehicle manufacturers and configurations in a single application, they might work more productively.
The software has advanced steadily over the next ten years, keeping pace with the increasing complexity of vehicles. For instance, the most recent iteration of the Mitchell 1 truck software, called TruckSeries, offers a single online platform that unifies labor estimation, diagnostic trouble code methods, and repair information for all makes and models of medium and heavy duty trucks.
A Fresh Batch of Technologists
Fleets require technicians that can rapidly pick up new technologies and are computer literate in addition to having access to the most recent repair information. In reality, one of the issues that the trucking industry faces most frequently these days is the lack of technicians.
The bright side is that the upcoming generation of technicians has grown up surrounded by technology. They use computers and Internet-based products and apps with total ease. For them, the technician scarcity presents a chance to lead the business in addition to using their technical expertise in a career as truck technicians.
Truck mechanics are encouraged to adopt new technology through initiatives like TMC’s National Technician Skills Competition, TMCSuperTech. Every year, Mitchell 1 oversees the TMCSuperTech’s service information skills station, where participants are tested on their proficiency in using the web-based software tools to accurately diagnose and repair automobiles.
The increase in truck technicians’ familiarity with online service information will have a multifaceted effect on operational efficiency. The software’s ability to assist businesses in more effectively assigning technicians and equipment is one advantage that is sometimes missed.
Prior to beginning work, the technician can use a scan tool to obtain the diagnostic trouble code (DTC). Then, utilizing Mitchell 1’s all-makes software or brand-specific programs that are available from OEMs, the technician can view the related repair processes for the diagnosis. With the use of this information, it is simple to ascertain the necessary skill set, tools, and/or equipment and to allocate resources appropriately, sending out any work that the shop is ill-equipped to do.
Online service information is crucial for outside vendors that do maintenance and repairs on commercial vehicles, such as independent shops and dealers, in addition to fleets. For these organizations, maintaining profitability and keeping customers depends on doing the task accurately the first time and on schedule.
Every sector of the commercial trucking business has to cope with more complicated trucks and the requirement to keep up with technological advancements. When such cutting-edge vehicles break down or require maintenance, web-based repair information is only one of several options that may help them get trucks back on the road fast.