Interleasing, LeasePlan, and HSBC Vehicle Finance have all started to use the Oasis ADVANCE system that delivers automated approval for service, maintenance and repair (SMR) work.
The system spares garages from calling contract hire companies for authorisation before proceeding with SMR work, typically delivering the 'go ahead' message in seconds.
This avoids the damage caused to customer service as busy fleet drivers endure annoying delays while a garage mechanic seeks pre-work approval over the telephone.
The system allows contract hire companies to pre-set parameters for all SMR work, on a client-by-client or car-by car basis. The garage mechanic simply connects to the Oasis system (which is not on the public internet, but on a private, secure and speedier intranet-type system) via a standard dial-up link, enters the dealership's authentication password, types in the vehicle's registration number, and requests approval to proceed with the specified work.
The request passes through to the contract hire company's computer system that runs it through its own rule set, before approving or rejecting the request. Early feedback from the first transactions indicates that between 50% and 70% of jobs are handled without the intervention of a maintenance controller.
Terry Hale, managing director of Oasis Global Systems, said the system enabled contract hire maintenance controllers to focus on more complicated SMR authorisations where they can add value to the process.
More than 250 dealer garages are already live with the system, and a further 700 have signed up to install it.
'Dealer acceptance is core to the process, and they have been very positive about how easy it is to use and the high level of authorisation achieved,' said Hale.
'We are looking to have 1,200 to 1,500 sites on Oasis ADVANCE by the end of this year, and when we reach 1,500 we will cover about 90% of contract hire companies' work.'