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June 01, 2018

5 Benefits of Switching from Paper-based DVIRs to eDVIRs

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It’s a scenario that every fleet manager faces sooner or later: the case of the missing DVIR report. Whether it’s because you need to check on a vehicle's maintenance history, or because of something more stressful, like a lawsuit or a DOT audit, it’s easy to tear your office, your mind, and maybe your team apart when you can’t find these legally mandated reports.

Don’t let missing paperwork turn your job into a nightmare. A switch to electronic DVIR reports (eDVIR) can save your sanity, and may even offer some additional protection to your company. Here are five reasons switching from traditional DVIRs can improve your life.

End the Micromanaging: How eDVIRs Make You a Better Manager

Every fleet manager has been there. You’ve told a driver a thousand times that they need to complete today’s DVIR. Or that they need to stop just checking off boxes and actually perform a real inspection. Or that they need to remember to hand in their inspection form. Or... you get the point.

Management is an exercise in frustration when you’re stuck endlessly nagging your team. The truth is that no one likes driver-vehicle inspection reports. They’re time-consuming, tedious, and ceaselessly technical. It’s no wonder they’re often the source of so much misery.

But DVIRs aren’t just a hassle designed to make your job difficult. They’re a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration requirement. So when you don’t perform these inspections, or don’t perform them correctly, you’re breaking federal law. These forms protect everyone, including you. The benefits of completing these forms include:

  • Ensuring proper vehicle maintenance.
  • Protecting your drivers.
  • Protecting motorists.
  • Tracking trends over time, so you can assess the quality of your vehicles and the mechanics who serve them.
  • Maintaining an accurate report of any vehicle problems, as well as what you did to fix those problems.
  • Providing documentation of vehicle issues and service history in case you are sued, audited, or face other legal or regulatory action.

So this is a serious and important managerial task -- far more than just busy work. Your drivers, however, may not see it that way. That leaves you in the middle, fighting with your drivers to comply with the law while secretly wishing you didn’t have to deal with it.

Digital DVIRs eliminate much of this hassle. The law requires you to inspect specific parts of the vehicle, but it does not require you to use a specific form. This means you can design your own intuitive forms that drivers understand and can easily use.

What’s more, the right form can encourage (or force) drivers to conduct thorough and potentially life-saving inspections -- not just rush through, check off some boxes, and hope for the best. So quit fighting with your team and embrace a new way of doing things that makes life better for everyone.

The Death of the Pile of Paperwork: Clean Your Office With eDVIRs

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A tidy office is more than just a convenience. Having a clean space in which to work can actually make your job easier --  yes, really. When you’re surrounded by chaos, it's easy to feel, well, chaotic. You may struggle with feeling overwhelmed, panicked, and unable to find anything.

So don’t spend the rest of your working life with a pile of papers as your roommate. You deserve a tidy place where you can meet with your team, display photos of your family, and maybe even manage to find that missing file you’ve been trying to locate since 1997.

You’re required to retain DVIR forms for at least three months. Yet commonsense dictates you should hang on to them much longer. Consider how a report might come in handy if:

  • You’re sued for an accident involving a driver.
  • You get involved with a lawsuit against a vehicle manufacturer for faulty parts.
  • You have to fire a driver, or discipline them for unsafe behavior or poor maintenance practices.
  • You need to review a driver’s inspection or driving history.
  • Government regulators show up with questions about a recent incident.

Do you really want to go digging through a pile of paper? No one does. You have better things to do with your time, and so does everyone else. A switch to eDVIR instantaneously eliminates the pile of paper in your office, removes the need for a storage space, and ends your never-ending battle with filing cabinets and paper storage systems.

eDVIRs allow you to store as many papers as you want, for as long as you want, with no additional hassle or worry. Search for the record you need. Amaze your boss with your ability to always get even the most esoteric information. And get your office back.

How eDVIRs Can Give You Back Your Free Time (Yes, Really)

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When was the last time you took a vacation? What about the last time u really enjoyed your vacation? If you’re like most fleet managers, the odds are good that you spend a lot of your vacation running things from a distance -- or panicking that they might fall apart without you.

Yet research consistently shows that human beings need time off to be happy. In fact, taking a vacation might even make you more productive, and help you make more money for your company. So no more excuses. You don’t have to be in the office to keep things running. You don’t even have to be in the same country.

With digital DVIR reports, you can see everything instantly uploaded. You’ll know exactly what happened while you were out, and have the capacity to manage any issues wherever you are. Perhaps more importantly, you’ll be able to build your own forms. Customizable forms mean you can create forms that work for the way you work -- and for the way your drivers think. So no more explaining things from your vacation. Walk your drivers through the inspection process with intuitive, intelligent forms and forget about staying in the office to deal with an avalanche of paperwork.

Whip Around allows you to access everything with an app in your phone. So no more time in front of a computer. No more being chained to your desk. You get your life back.

**Take a look at how using an eDVIR saves you 83% of the time it takes to conduct a vehicle inspection using traditional paper-based DVIRs!

Ready for Anything: When Lawyers, Regulators, and Other Unfriendly Faces Come Knocking

If your company is successful enough, eventually something will go wrong. The more drivers you have, the more customers you serve, the more money you make, the more opportunities there are for a problem. That problem might come in the form of:

  • A mechanical issue with one of your vehicles.
  • A complaint to a regulatory body about your work policies, the way you run your fleet, or the quality of your inspections.
  • An accident or other incident involving a driver.
  • Allegations of incorrect, forged, or missing DVIR reports.
  • A lawsuit due to an accident or other incident involving your fleet.

It’s easy to panic when this happens, but this is just a part of doing business. Here’s what you might not realize, though:

All those DVIR forms you’ve accumulated over the years can help you when something goes wrong. They may serve as evidence in court, or as a way to refresh your memory during depositions. They can dispute a false claim. They can prove to a regulatory body that you've kept up with your obligations to your drivers and to your fleet. They may even put a lawsuit to bed before it happens.

For them to accomplish this, however, they have to be readily available, clearly written, and completely accurate. This means your forms need to be stored somewhere, searchable, and well-organized.

That’s where eDVIR reports come in. When you switch to electronic storage, you don’t have to worry about hanging onto too much for too long. You can keep your reports literally forever. And that’s a compelling response to a regulator who accuses you of not keeping diligent records, or a lawyer who insists you didn’t properly inspect your vehicles. The daily annoyance of DVIRs just might become your saving grace.

Focusing on What Really Matters: Safety, Quality, and Efficiency

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In the daily stress of running a fleet, it’s easy to forget about what you’re really doing. Yes, you’re serving customers and delivering products. You’re providing jobs. You’re managing a workforce. But you’re also charged with a much more important task: keeping your drivers safe, and protecting the well-being of the motorists they encounter.

Large fleets pose a very real public hazard. Trucking accidents are often fatal, and can give rise to costly lawsuits and massive insurance claims -- not to mention the tragic loss of human life. When accidents happen, your good reputation can take a nosedive.

Ultimately, the purpose of DVIR reports is to prevent this all from happening. Daily vehicle inspections tip you off to potential problems before those problems turn into full-fledged disasters. And by keeping track of everything electronically, you’re better equipped to track progress as vehicles move through the inspection and repair process. This greatly reduces the risk of a mechanical failure. Moreover, the right inspection can encourage drivers to notice other safety hazards, and create a culture of safety.

You know this already, but you may be overwhelmed by the massive pile of paper that DVIRs have historically meant. EDVIRs offer a massive change, the benefits of which you may see from day one. Those include:

  • Faster inspections, without sacrificing quality. With well-designed forms, drivers can move through the inspection process much more quickly, but without neglecting important components of the inspection.
  • A chance to effortlessly view inspection reports no matter where you are. So you can remain in touch with what’s happening with your fleet without giving up your day off.
  • The ability to track trends over time. When all you have is a pile of paperwork, you might not notice that a certain driver seems to have a lot of mechanical issues, or that a certain brand of truck keeps breaking down. These trends may reveal something about your drivers, their inspections, or the vehicles they operate.
  • The power to create inspection forms that are intuitively useful for your drivers.
  • A chance to search inspection reports for keywords should you ever have to respond to lawsuit discovery, track a problem with a driver, or otherwise need important documentation.
  • A faster approach to inspections. You no longer have to hound drivers.
  • Fewer missed deliveries. Vehicle problems mean late deliveries. With better inspection protocols, you’ll be less likely to miss deliveries and better prepared to make adjustments at the last minute.
  • Always knowing where a vehicle is in the repair pipeline, since you’ll be able to easily assign it to a mechanic and track its repair progress.
  • Your time is money. It’s valuable. You could spend it doing something other than hounding drivers and shuffling papers. Get back that time -- and the money it’s worth.

Paper-Based DVIR vs. eDVIR: Making the Switch With Whip Around

eDVIRs make your life better. They make your fleet easier to manage. They make unpleasant surprises easier to anticipate and less challenging to manage. With Whip Around, the transition is seamless and the process is easy. We work with you to help you go from chaotic clutter to easy inspections.

So what sets us apart?

  • Easy to build, beautiful customizable forms in minutes.
  • Access everything through our app.
  • Easy storage of all of your inspection reports.
  • Seamless monitoring of each vehicle.
  • Ability to assign vehicles to specific mechanics, and to track their progress through repairs.
  • Manage and view all report data.

Ready to get started? You can get set up in seconds with a demo from our team. Start your free account today, and get back your time!

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