Real-time, data-driven uptime

FAMCO has opened the Middle East’s first Volvo Uptime Centre in Dubai for proactive monitoring and remote diagnostics of Volvo construction equipment and trucks in the UAE to provide actionable information to dealers and customers.

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With over one million connected customer assets globally, including trucks, buses and construction equipment, the Volvo Group has demonstrated the potential of data analytics to help customers improve  productivity by increasing vehicle and machine uptime, reducing emissions and noise, as well as improving traffic and site safety.

Volvo’s connected assets around the world are managed via IT nerve centres called ‘Volvo Uptime Centres’, where data related to the engine, mileage, fuel consumption, etc., transmitted via Volvo telematics systems is monitored 24/7 and analysts are tasked with identifying ways to improve the uptime of the assets. The primary goal is customer agility - to provide a proactive solution by identifying a problem before a dealer or customer does and taking immediate action through the dealer.

For truck owners, the Dynafleet fleet management system provides constant updates on a vehicle’s performance, making it possible to pinpoint critical data and take prompt action to reduce costs, improve vehicle utilization and allow for the quick re-deployment of assets. The CareTrack advanced telematics service, available for construction equipment, allows machine problems to be caught before they occur, while also improving technical response time and downtime resolution speed. For customers, the increased machine utilisation, fuel efficiency, and awareness about machine operations realised through an uptime centre translate into lower operating costs.  

Volvo has now localised this service for the UAE market in association with Al Futtaim Auto & Machinery Company (FAMCO), the sole UAE distributor of Volvo trucks, buses and construction equipment. The first Volvo Uptime Centre in the Middle East was opened in the UAE recently at the FAMCO workshop facility in Dubai Investment Park. The FAMCO facility is equipped with designated areas to serve both truck and construction equipment customers. Four analysts work in two shifts to provide 24/7 service to measure and manage uptime for UAE customers by monitoring the statuses of Volvo assets, planning the servicing of equipment and delivery of parts, and solving and preventing machine problems by issuing alerts to dealers. Dealers and customers receive alerts from the uptime centre via phone calls, emails, and text messages.

Vladimir Knezevic, managing director, FAMCO UAE, says: “Our customers are central to everything we do, and it’s our responsibility to demonstrate the true potential of their machines and educate them about how downtime and improper maintenance can affect machine longevity and operating costs. So, it was a logical decision for us to enhance our services by establishing the Middle East’s first Uptime Centre. This will allow us to better support our partners, providing further reassurance that when they choose a Volvo truck or construction equipment, they are actively prioritising increased uptime and maximising profit, whilst reducing downtime and any negative impact on their investments.”

Currently, the uptime centre in Dubai monitors over 800 Volvo construction equipment and around 2000 Volvo trucks which were sold since 2015 and equipped with Dynafleet. While new machines and trucks come inbuilt with CareTrack and Dynafleet, the UAE has a significant number of older Volvo machines that need to be connected with the Uptime Centre. FAMCO estimates that there are at least 2000 Volvo trucks in the UAE sold before 2015 and not equipped with Dynafleet. The distributor is reaching out to the market to encourage customers to sign up for the service with retrofit kits in order to get the remaining Volvo assets linked to the uptime centre.

The analysts at the UAE uptime centre are also responsible for activating and driving the number of subscriptions for connected services, customer support agreements and renewals. These KPIs are connected with the various service contracts opted by the customers. Among the different service contracts offered by Volvo Trucks – Gold, Silver, and Blue – the Gold contract provides a guarantee of 100% uptime, ensures that servicing doesn’t compromise uptime and that maintenance is done only when needed.

Roger Alm, executive vice president, Volvo Group, and president, Volvo Trucks, says: “Connected services complement our products and enables us to upsell and cross-sell to customers. The more the data collected, the faster it is to identify machine faults and operator errors in a pre-emptive manner, which justifies investment in our best service contracts. Predictive maintenance also help drive our aftermarket business with improved service planning, workshop availability and supply of genuine Volvo spare parts. To accommodate changing customer requirements for operating in unpredictable and fluctuating markets, Volvo has introduced flexible service contracts in some markets. We believe the future of our service contracts will be the ‘pay per use’ model in which monthly fees are aligned with actual mileage.”

Roger Alm, executive vice president, Volvo Group, and president, Volvo Trucks.

Volvo and FAMCO aim to establish the UAE uptime centre as a centre of excellence and profitable business model for other uptime centres in the GCC. The facility also serves as a training centre for service advisors and supervisors.
Frank O’Connor, Middle East market director, Volvo Trucks, says: “It is still uncommon for dealers to provide the levels of service that FAMCO is now offering, both in terms of the standards of advanced technology involved and the investment made in upgrading of the FAMCO workshop facility. We’ll need to set up dedicated uptime centres for other GCC markets in the future along with local distributors. The UAE uptime centre will help us set standards and best practices that we can adopt in other markets.”

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PMV Middle East - March 2020

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