The Town of Castle Rock, Colo., Fleet Services Division is a model in fleet management and operations. As a full-service municipality, the Town provides its 46,000 residents with general government services including community relations, facilities and risk management, finance, human resources, GIS-mapping, innovation & technology, and municipal court. Castle Rock's attorney, clerk, and manager offices also provide general government services.
The Town's Fleet Services Division is responsible for keeping it all running, or "Keeping Castle Rock on the move," as Fleet Superintendent Todd Richardson describes it. With a staff of six, including Richardson, the Fleet Services Division provides a one-stop facility for vehicle and equipment maintenance, repair, and asset management of the 337 owned or leased vehicles.
"We provide it all," Richardson said. "Vehicle maintenance -- everything from base preventive maintenance to complex repairs, new installs, parts, vehicle specifications, vehicle replacement and disposal, purchasing, billing, titles, and registrations."
Customer Service Key to Fleet's Success
Customer service is one of the highest priorities for the Castle Rock Fleet Services Division and one reason for its success. "We base customer satisfaction on feedback received on a service and repair survey. The survey is placed in each unit after any repair or preventive maintenance is completed," Richardson said.
The survey consists of four questions on a graded scale of one to 10, based on overall performance and customer satisfaction. The goal is a 90-percent customer satisfaction rate.
"We maintained a 95-percent or greater rating over the past 12 months," noted Richardson.
Another customer service tool is the Fleet Advisory Committee. The committee includes one representative from each town department and meets quarterly. The committee has two purposes: provide performance feedback to the Fleet Services division and help make policy decisions concerning the Town's fleet.
The division's success is also attributed to the people on the team, Richardson explained. "We have a great team -- everyone understands our goals. We have excellent technicians -- Chad Bednar, Rian Snowbarger, and Mike McKevly all have ASE certifications and years of mechanical experience. Jorge Chavez, fleet supervisor, keeps shop operations moving doing everything from scheduling to repair work and training. Paul Colell manages the parts room and is our software system administrator."
For 2010 and beyond, the team continues to look for ways to improve customer service, efficiency, and overall fleet operations.
"If we have goals that challenge us, we continue to get better and will provide the best possible service to our internal customers and to the citizens of Castle Rock," said Richardson.
Fleet Management Software System Keeps Track of Fleet
Castle Rock Fleet Services uses a state-of-the-art automated fleet management software system that tracks everything -- technician productivity, preventive maintenance, vehicle downtime, and part-fill rates. In addition to tracking daily operational metrics, the system assists with vehicle replacement, assigning a replacement score to each vehicle based on mileage, maintenance and repair cost, and use type.
"Our fleet software helps us with vehicle replacement decisions. Once the vehicle meets our replacement criteria, it enters a review process to determine if the vehicle should be replaced, retained for limited use, or if the vehicle's lifecycle should be extended," Richardson explained. "The overall goal is to replace vehicles at the lowest lifecycle cost, before operating costs exceed vehicle capital. Our software system helps us with those decisions and reinforces our replacement decisions because they are based on a formula -- not just mileage or years."
Fleet Operation Earns Industry Accolades
Castle Rock Fleet Services is a successful fleet operation, according to Richardson. The division received the American Public Works Association (APWA) award for the Best Fleet Management and Operations in 2006 and 2009 from the Colorado Chapter. The group also received national recognition as one of the 2008 "100 Best Fleets" in North America. Fleet Services saw a "Green Fleet" resolution passed by the Town Council in 2008. The division also developed and implemented a vehicle replacement program and vehicle use and operation policy. In addition, the fleet team initiated a Fleet Advisory Committee and maintained a 95-percent or higher vehicle availability rate since 2006.
In 2009 and 2010, the Fleet Services Division attained the ASE Blue Seal of Excellence. Richardson and Colell earned the designation of Certified Public Fleet Professional (CPFP) from the American Public Works Association. Additional significant accomplishments in 2009 included purchasing two compressed natural gas (CNG) transit buses for the Town transit system.
Todd Richardson, CPFP, fleet superintendent, Town of Castle Rock, Colo. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org