Crown Equipment moves its InfoLink fleet management system to the cloud

Two-tiered plan offers basic fleet monitoring or optimization tools for operators, maintenance and energy consumption.
By Modern Materials Handling Staff
October 22, 2013 - MMH Editorial

In an effort to provide customers further flexibility and capabilities for managing their forklift fleet and operators, Crown Equipment Corporation, one of the world’s largest material handling companies, has announced its Crown InfoLink fleet management system is evolving to a hosted solution that will allow the software to be easily scaled as customer fleet management needs grow and mature.

Crown InfoLink is a wireless forklift fleet and operator management system that delivers actionable data to help warehouse managers maximize productivity. Hosted by Crown, InfoLink now provides a flexible approach to fleet and operator management by offering a two-tier platform that aligns with customer needs and challenges, and provides multiple paths to forklift fleet optimization depending upon organizational priorities and budgets.

The Standard plan provides an entry point for companies by offering basic fleet and operator management features, including operator authorization for equipment use, impact detection and alerts, along with real-time equipment status. The Advantage plan offers companies the ability to track operator productivity, manage planned and unplanned maintenance, and optimize energy resources including battery changes and fuel usage, in addition to the basic fleet management features.

“We are seeing the forklift quickly become the most advanced piece of equipment that touches every part of the warehouse. More advanced on-board technology is improving operator productivity and enabling connectivity that helps to provide greater visibility into the warehouse environment, operator productivity and product movement,” said Jim Gaskell, director of global Crown Insite products, Crown Equipment. “Crown InfoLink helps companies use actionable information to make better business decisions and achieve better return on investment. The new two-tier platform makes it easier for organizations to get started with fleet management. For instance, depending on a customer’s needs, they may be able to enjoy fleet management capabilities for as little as the cost of a cup of coffee per day, per forklift.”

Clemens Food Group, a prominent meat processing company based in Hatfield, Pa., evaluated several fleet management systems before deciding to deploy Crown InfoLink with its fleet of 230 forklifts.

“During the decision process there were a few things we immediately liked about the software that moved it to the top of the list of the systems we were evaluating,” said Mike Bracrella, director of maintenance, Clemens Food Group. “We liked that the software was actually developed by a forklift provider and that it was easy to use. We also liked the broad range of information the system provided and the fact that it could be used with nearly any forklift from any manufacturer. It was critical that we deploy a system that could work with a mixed fleet without requiring drastic changes on our end.”

Crown InfoLink, which is a part of the Crown Insite Productivity Suite, helps customers monitor and manage the efficient use of their forklift fleet and total operations by delivering actionable data through content-rich, interactive dashboards that help fleet managers focus on real opportunities and avoid wasted time deciphering mounds of data. The wireless system provides decision makers fleet-wide visibility into an array of operator and fleet information, such as battery usage, impact history, truck utilization, OSHA compliance, service needs and more through a user-friendly interface.

The secure, wireless solution supports existing and future WLAN. It is compliant with Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n wireless standards and supports a variety of security encryption protocols. Crown InfoLink offers robust security features, including username and password requirements for data access, and secure sockets layer (SSL) protocol protection. Forklift operator access is managed through keypad codes or ID cards, and managers control permission for each individual or group.

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About the Author

Josh Bond, Senior Editor
Josh Bond is Senior Editor for Modern, and was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and associate editor. He has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce University.


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