Pictured: Ed Fraser and Monika Douglas
LIVE FROM THE EXHIBITION
Parcel Holders’ arrival in the vending arena has refocused attention on the time, money and madness that surrounds something you’d think would be relatively simple: getting a spare part to where it’s needed, pronto.
Having established an industry bridgehead in the form of some notable vending and water clients, (including Connect Vending, full story here), MD Ed Fraser has been zig-zagging the country in recent weeks for talks, both with vending operators and parts suppliers in order to finesse the company’s offer.
Basically, the service works by having consignments sent to pick up, drop off points called PUDO’s. PUDO’s are all local shops, located near field engineers’ homes. The service isn’t tied in with any particular carrier and when the consignment arrives, the shop staff sign the proof of delivery requested by the delivery company. The Parcel Holders system then automatically texts and or e-mails the field service engineer and informs them that the parts are ready for collection.
Simples? Yes, but there were one or two ‘what ifs’… We caught up with Ed today at AVEX.
‘It was after a meeting with (an operator whose name we’re withholding) that we realised that vending companies often collaborate to get machines back into service fast’, Ed said. He’s right: if you’re an operator based in the Midlands and you have a problem with a machine in Fife to deal with, it’s likely that you’ll try to do a reciprocal deal with a company in that particular neck of the woods.
‘We learned that there’s an issue with confidentiality if a company chooses to use our service in conjunction with a sub contractor’, Ed said. ‘We’ve had a developer having sleepless nights for the last three weeks making it work, but we’ll be ready to launch in two or three weeks time’, Ed said.
For a more detailed explanation of Parcel holder’s sub-contractor tweak, take a look at my shaky iPhone video.