"Crown and MBM Corporation have a lot in common. We both go above and beyond to deliver and satisfy our customers. In the past, MBM viewed material handling equipment as disposable. Our philosophy was that if the product lasted 36-42 months, then we were happy. In the mid 1990s, our company grew fast and we didn’t have a structured maintenance program. Our fleet size was larger than it needed to be due to unnecessary downtime. We didn’t call a service technician until the truck was broke and then we hired the company with the cheapest labor rate. However, we soon realized that although our approach was cheaper in the beginning, we experienced a reoccurring scenario of replacing parts over and over again. This replacement cost added up over time. That is, until we changed our outlook.
Crown’s FleetSTATS tracking system helped with this. With the information gathered from this system, we were able to gain control of our costs and identify opportunities to improve our fleet performance. With Crown Integrity Service, we learned that it’s not about using the cheapest labor rate or the cheapest replacement part; it’s about spending a little more upfront for a high-quality, reliable maintenance program.
We quickly found out that to really determine how much a company spends on material handling equipment and service, you need to look at data at the distribution center level down to the asset level. We felt that we needed a structured national program in place. Without a structured maintenance program, we would spend more money to maintain our other trucks—often three times as much—when compared to a Crown truck. We realized that just as we want our customers to view us as a partner and expert in distribution, we needed to find a partner and expert in material handling equipment.