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Our customer Stalkers Transport has shared the success of its JourneyWatch vehicle tracking system with drivers, boosting their basic pay by 18%. The company has achieved significant fuel savings, with an overall MPG improvement of 8.2%.

This has been driven by friendly competition between drivers using the daily de-brief on our JourneyWatch mobile app.

Stalkers’ success story was featured in a very recent edition of Commercial Motor and below is an extract of the story. We wish Karen Stalker and her team continued success.

Stalkers drivers’ basic pay up 18%

DRIVERS at Stalkers Transport have seen their basic pay soar by 18% this year after working with the company to cut fuel costs! The increase follows last year’s installation of BigChange Apps’ telematics system across Stalkers Transport’s 62-vehicle fleet. The system monitors drivers’ fuel economy and driving behaviour.

The company chose the telematics system because it allows drivers as well as managers to monitor their scores creating a league table.

Stalkers’ MD Karen Stalker said, “The system has created friendly competition between drivers which has seen a significant impact on fuel usage and driving standards.”

“We had the kits installed in all of our trucks and each one is driver-specific. It scores their overall driving behaviour so at the end of the day when they log off they can see where they are ranked against their colleagues,” she said. Stalker said the firm made it clear to the drivers that any savings would be passed onto them in the form of pay rises and monthly £100 bonuses. “We were aware that we weren’t paying the best rates of pay to our drivers in the leaner years. But for us to be able to change that, the drivers had to help us to help them.” Stalker said fuel savings have been significant. “MPG has improved by 8.2%.”

“It has massively reduced idling time and generally improved driving standards. This has also resulted in much lower numbers of accidents and incidents.” She added, “We have been able to give the savings back to the drivers first in terms of a significant wage rise, which equated to 18% onto their basic rate, and secondly as a fuel bonus if they get a perfect 10 score for the whole month.”

Adapted from Commercial Motor – 20th August, 2015.

With the recent ECJ ruling on travel time for Mobile workers, we asked Richard Parr, Partner at Blacks Solicitors about the implications of this change to the Working Time Directive.

There’s a Taoist saying: “The journey is the reward”. For field-based workers, a court decision handed down recently by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) gives tangible effect to that earlier saying.

A traffic-clogged daily commute to and from our place of work is all too familiar to many of us.  The fact that we aren’t paid for the time wasted in that commute merely rubs salt into the wound.  Can that commute ever be categorised as “working time” and therefore paid for?

For time to be classed as ‘working time’ the employee or worker must be

at the work place;
at the employer’s disposal; and
engaged in work duties.

That explains why, for most of us, the daily commute can never be “working time”.  For travelling workers such as delivery drivers and salesmen, the chances are that they are regarded as “working” from the moment they leave home: the first requirement is fulfilled because travelling is an integral part of the job, the second as long as routes and destinations are determined by the employer, and the third if travelling is integral to the role.  But that will be fairly academic if the individual in question is salaried.

What of other workers who have no fixed place of work and who are paid by the hour only for “working time” – for example, a worker who visits a client’s home as part of a domiciliary care package?  Historically, the view was that for such a worker time spent travelling to the first appointment of the day, and back home after the last appointment, was not “working time” and therefore fell outside legislation such as the Working Time Regulations (WTR) and the law relating to minimum wage.

However, in the case of Federacion de Servicios del sindicato Comisiones Obreras, the ECJ has expressed the view that where workers are not assigned to a fixed place of work, time they spend travelling to and from their first and last customers counts as ‘working time’ for the purposes of the Working Time Directive.

Courts and Employment Tribunals are required to construe domestic legislation (for example, WTR) so as to comply with the Directives from which the legislation is derived, so it seems likely that the ECJ’s forthcoming decision will soon affect the way we must interpret and apply to WTR. If your staff are salaried and they’ve signed a waiver of the WTR ban on a working week which exceeds 48 hours you are probably OK. But if your staff haven’t signed waivers and, worse still, they’re hourly paid, then you may have both regulatory as well as financial problems.

That all sounds pretty bad. Surely it couldn’t get worse?

Well, an implication of the decision which commentators are still trying to assess is in relation to possible impact on National Minimum Wage (NMW).

The regulations which govern NMW expressly provide that time spent travelling between home and the employer’s place of business is not working time for the purposes of NMW. However, inroads have been made by Employment Tribunals into the concept of what is and what is not working time for NMW purposes.

For example, a care worker who is required to stay at a service user’s home, and who may not leave during their shift, will be classed as working for NMW purposes even if they are permitted to sleep and are in fact sleeping throughout the shift. The cases on the point have found that as the worker is not free to be elsewhere, even time spent sleeping may be part of the job which the worker is engaged to do.

Given that this latest decision by the ECJ is based on the idea that an itinerant worker is at the employer’s disposal when travelling to the first appointment, it is difficult to reconcile this case and the “sleeping” cases with the NMW provision which says time spent travelling to work is not working time.

When one adds in the requirement that UK courts and tribunals must so far as possible construe UK legislation so as to comply with EU legislation, it becomes clear to see why there is a growing body of opinion that this latest ECJ case will be interpreted as applying to NMW. It would be surprising if a trade union didn’t seek to test this point.

If you have a peripatetic workforce who work from home what can you do? Good legal advice would be an excellent start. And whether you provide vehicles or require workers to provide their own, a cutting edge vehicle tracking system which gives reliable information about what your boys and girls are up to may be another wise investment.

Richard Parr
Partner
Employment Department
RParr@LawBlacks.com

The Build Show is part of UK Construction Week and will be the most exciting and significant event in the Construction, HVAC and Service sector for decades. The event will provide the most powerful opportunity available for suppliers and contractors to connect face-to-face, all under one roof.

There will be a mix of seminars, demonstrations, debates and discussions to make UK Construction week a powerful and stimulating event at all levels. We’ll be delivering live demonstrations of our 3-in-1 JobWatch Mobile Workforce Management system and our JourneyWatch GPS Vehicle Tracking. Plus our Construction, Service and HVAC sector experts will be sharing best practice. See you there…

Find us at stand B4/844 in the Build Show Hall

Register for your FREE tickets now

BigChange Apps is exhibiting at this year’s Coach & Bus Live show that is taking place between Wednesday 30th September and Thursday 1st of October 2015 at the NEC in Birmingham. You’ll find us in Hall 18 on stand H39. 

Tickets for the show are free and you simply need to register online at Coach & Bus Live.

We’ll be showcasing our latest developments for the Passenger Transport industry, including our JourneyWatch GPS Vehicle Tracking system JourneyWatch, and our all-in-one Mobile Workforce Management system JobWatch. We’re delivering real benefits for a whole spectrum of coach operators including Star Coaches of Batley, Coatham Coaches, Wheadon’s Greys of Ely and Williams of Bradford. You can view a case study for Greys of Ely here: View Case Study

Our JourneyWatch vehicle tracking solution delivers miles more value than competing systems in the market. Far beyond just vehicle location and a ‘dot on a map’, JourneyWatch provides a rich inbuilt CRM system, capturing all customer and client data in a single and secure place. In addition integrated fleet management ensures quick, easy and robust management of the coach fleet, including defect reporting and tracking of maintenance. JourneyWatch also includes a comprehensive ‘driver productivity app’ at no extra cost. The app compliments the GPS Vehicle Tracking system. Running on any Android smartphone, the app manages timesheets, logs and photographs expenses as they are incurred and includes two way messaging with the back office. To support Health and Safety and the management of the fleet, the App provides a daily driver behaviour de-brief, taking into account GPS vehicle tracking data including harsh braking, acceleration, cornering and engine idling. The daily driver check is proving invaluable for our coach customers. There’s no more pink slips to manage and file – the driver simply carries out the check on the JourneyWatch mobile app, logging any defects as they go. Logged defects are automatically brought to the attention of management in the back-office, ensuring everything is managed to resolution.

Those coach operators opting for our all-in-one Mobile Workforce Management system JobWatch get the added benefits of full paperless planning, scheduling and job dispatch. Coach drivers receive their job information and updates in-real time on the app, without needing to rely on paper notes or multiple calls to the office. Pickup and drop-off points are automatically loaded into the integrated sat-nav saving time and avoiding errors. Finally, JobWatch also includes a full finance and invoicing module, allowing you create quotations, manage operations and invoice all in one simple to use system.

We look forward to welcoming you to our stand at the show.

 Coach & Bus Live is taking place on 30 September – 1 October ’15 at the NEC, Birmingham and is the major domestic showcase for the bus, coach and passenger transport technology sector.

The event covers everything needed to successfully operate a fleet of passenger vehicles – including buses, coaches and mini-vehicles, technology, workshop equipment, insurance services, finance advice and training and development.

Please visit the BigChange stand for a system presentation!

Martin Port
Founder & CEO

BigChange Apps has teamed up with mobile workforce tech company SmartWitness .

Entrepreneur Martin Port is to install 100,000 SmartWitness in-vehicle CCTV cameras over the next three years in a bid to help clients reduce costly insurance claims.

The cameras will be installed in the vehicles of Mr Port’s BigChange customers and will provide companies with court admissible video footage.

Mr Port has teamed up with SmartWitness in-vehicle CCTV cameras, which are highly rated by insurance companies, to add video functionality to his BigChange mobile workforce technology system.

​SmartWitness evidence allows insurance claims to be filed in record time, which significantly reduces costs.

Insurers have found that just two per cent of incidents recorded on SmartWitness cameras result in disputed claims. This is against an industry norm of 40 per cent for all motor claims.

At the moment Leeds-based BigChange provides customers with tracking information about a driver’s harsh braking, acceleration and speed which is a powerful tool to enforce good driver behaviour, but video footage will transform the operation.

“In a lot of incidents involving near misses or an accident you get harsh braking and to have video proof of exactly what happened is absolutely vital,” said Mr Port.

“You can protect the driver and it’s encrypted so it’s admissible in court.”

Martin Port NewsPaper

Mr Port said that a trial run with a client that has 100 vehicles saw 35 incidents and all were documented by video footage.

“The technology is very. very good. It’s a powerful tool,” he added.

BigChange has approaching 300 customers, including HSS, Silentnight and Morrison Utility Services, and services 5,000 vehicles.

In just over two years sales have soared.

“We’re growing at 100 per cent a year. This year turnover will be just over £2m, up from £1.05m and the year before that we were at £300,000,” said Mr Port.

“We hope to fit 10,000 vehicles by the end of December 2016.”

The cameras will cost £199 each plus installation costs and the link to the system. Customers will receive a text when there has been unusual braking activity.

Mr Port, 52, sold vehicle tracking firm Masternaut UK in 2009 for an estimated £20m,

He sees it as essential that the next generation of telematics include court admissible video footage.

SmartWitness will offer a fully integrated solution as part of BigChange’s JourneyWatch Vehicle Tracking and JobWatch All-in-One Mobile Workforce Management systems. The SmartWitness SVC 1080 will now be offered as standard with these systems.

Camera events will be automatically logged and will enable management to know the exact time and location of any accidents or near-misses​.

“Together with Smart Witness cameras, BigChange has a truly comprehensive risk management offering, protecting your business, your drivers and members of the public​,” said Mr Port.​

​“​BigChange mobile workforce apps help companies to manage risk right across their operations. All customers have free use of a driver productivity app for ​a​ndroid phones and tablets. It automates and enforces daily driver checks, can manage risk assessments and provides tailored de-briefs and driver feedback.​“

He added that video footage is​ now​ a key part of any telematics offering​.

BigChange​ looked at ​a number​ of other solutions​, but ​Mr Port said ​SmartWitness was the clear winner, based on spec​ification​, features, innovation, value, reliability, quality, support and price.

JobWatch was launched by BigChange as ​a​ paperless way to plan, manage, schedule and track ​a​ mobile workforce.

Read more: http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/business/business-news/footage-admissible-in-court-thanks-to-special-software-1-7471189#ixzz3mO2VvQDE

Entrepreneur Martin Port isto install 100,000 SmartWitnessin­vehicle CCTV cameras over the next three yearsin a bid to help clients reduce costly insurance claims.

The cameras will be installed in the vehicles of Mr Port’s BigChange customers and will provide companies with court admissible video footage. Mr Port has teamed up with SmartWitness in­vehicle CCTV cameras, which are highly rated by insurance companies, to add video functionality to his BigChange BigChange mobile workforce technology system. SmartWitness evidence allows insurance claims to be filed in record time, which significantly reduces costs. Insurers have found that just two per cent of incidents recorded on SmartWitness cameras result in disputed claims.

This is against an industry norm of 40 per cent for all motor claims. At the moment Leeds­based BigChange provides customers with tracking information about a driver’s harsh braking, acceleration and speed which is a powerful tool to enforce good driver behaviour, but video footage will transform the operation.

“In a lot of incidents involving near misses or an accident you get harsh braking and to have video proof of exactly what happened is absolutely vital,”

said Mr Port.

“You can protect the driver and it’s encrypted so it’s admissible in court.”

Mr Port said that a trial run with a client that has 100 vehicles saw 35 incidents and all were documented by video footage.

“The technology is very. Very good. It’s a powerful tool,” he added. BigChange has approaching 300 customers, including HSS, Silentnight and Morrison Utility Services, and services 5,000 vehicles. In just over two years sales have soared “We’re growing at 100 per cent a year. This year turnover will be just over £2m, up from £1.05m and the year before that we were at £300,000”

said Mr Port.

“We hope to fit 10,000 vehicles by the end of December 2016.”

The cameras will cost £199 each plus installation costs and the link to the system. Customers will receive a text when there has been unusual braking activity. Mr Port, 52, sold vehicle tracking firm Masternaut UK in 2009 for an estimated £20m, He sees it as essential that the next generation of telematics include court admissible video footage. SmartWitness will offer a fully integrated solution as part of BigChange’s BigChange’s JourneyWatch Vehicle Tracking and JobWatch All­-in­-One Mobile Workforce Management systems. The SmartWitness SVC 1080 will now be offered as standard with these systems. Camera events will be automatically logged and will enable management to know the exact time and location of any accidents or near­misses.

“Together with Smart Witness cameras, BigChange has a truly comprehensive risk management offering, protecting your business, your drivers and members of the public,”

said Mr Port.

“BigChange mobile workforce apps help companies to manage risk right across their operations. All customers have free use of a driver productivity app for android phones and tablets. It automates and enforces daily driver checks, can manage risk assessments and provides tailored de­briefs and driver feedback.”

He added that video footage is now a key part of any telematics offering. BigChange looked at a number of other solutions, but Mr Port said SmartWitness was the clear winner, based on specification, features, innovation, value, reliability, quality, support and price. JobWatch was launched by BigChange as a paperless way to plan, manage, 9/21/2015 Footage admissible in court thanks to special software schedule and track a mobile workforce.

Martin Port Signature
Martin Port
Founder & CEO

Our JobWatch and JourneyWatch products have evolved with lots of new functionality.

To capture all these new features, we’ve put together a brand new visitor website, ensuring that you get the full picture.

What’s more it’s fully mobile optimised – so we challenge you to view it on your mobile or tablet.

I would love to hear what you make of it please let me know.

3 in 1

Martin Port Signature
Martin Port
Founder & CEO

BigChange

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