For any transport operation it is necessary to constantly think about the development of the fleet. At GLW Freight Management in Perth, the approach has been between being traditionally smart or smartly traditional.
None of the trucks have any GPS monitoring equipment fitted. Some of the trucks have dash-cams, but these are the drivers’ own equipment. However, Graeme Woodall, GLW Director and the operation’s Financial Officer, Andrew Lange say they are considering checking out some form of camera monitoring in the cabins, with a view to fitting them in the future.
“I’m old school,” says Graeme. “But it has just reached a point where it has to change. We are looking into a possible system to fit in the trucks in the future. Maybe I trust people too much. We are being asked by our customers to fix something in the trucks. It should help us to avoid problems in the future.”
The containers with the fleet handles come out of a meat works in Katanning as well as as another meat facility in Esperance. All of the full containers are bound for Fremantle Port and export. The trucks used are the Western Australian pocket road trains, at 27.5 m long, carrying a 40 foot container on the lead trailer and a 20 foot container on the second trailer. The 40 foot container can way anything up to 32 tonnes, with the 20 foot on behind, anything from 18 to 22 tonnes.
When Diesel News visited the company’s depot makes a good impression, with well-presented equipment being loaded and unloaded, while others are undergoing regular ongoing maintenance. It is all part of the process of the development of the fleet.
“We’ve progressed through the years in our location,” says Andrew. “We’ve been here for about 12 months. At the previous location, around the corner we were there for just over three years and outgrew it. This new facility has got room for growth, in terms of the facilities here, but we probably need more parking. We have 102 trailers, if they all came in at the same time there wouldn’t be enough room.”
There are just over 30 people working in the business, but 26 of those are drivers, two are mechanics and then there is the small management team. With a low administrative base, the operation boasts a high level of productivity across the team.
Just about everyone who works in a business can’t drive a truck so that if there is an issue under truck needs to get from A2B there is someone you can step into the breach, get the job done and get the delivery to the customer.
“I have never had a plan in all of the years I have been running a business,” says Graeme. “Growth will be organic, if you hear of something, you have a crack at it, and if it works… the main thing is getting the right people. I probably do it the wrong way round, I get a good team and then go looking for the work.”