Why You Should Go Digital with Pre Trip Inspections

By The GoCanvas Team on November 25, 2021
Tags: Data Collection

man and woman on tablet device in front of a truck fleet


Many transportation and logistics companies are modernizing their operations by switching from paper inspection forms to digital forms completed on mobile apps. Pre trip inspections are one example of the type of form that can be digitally signed by operators in the field. When drivers need to complete pre trip or post trip inspection forms, they’re able to use a mobile device or tablet to complete checklists and sign off on forms electronically. Since many drivers operate in remote locations, pre trip inspection apps can be completed without an internet connection and data is synced to the cloud whenever internet becomes available. Continue reading this article to learn how digital inspections work and examples of how transportation companies are leveraging the technology to save time and money in the field and in the office.


Why You Should Go Digital with Pre Trip Inspections

A digital pre-trip inspection is designed to replace the paper form inspection report. Going paperless brings many opportunities to streamline processes and automate how work is done. Here are the top three reasons why you should consider moving to digital inspections rather than paper forms:


Increase productivity by eliminating manual workflows

Paper forms can be a drain on company resources. Paperwork can be difficult to keep track of and create costly reporting errors, with long turnaround times for completed paperwork. For the transportation industry with a workforce out on the road, drivers and office staff can find that paperwork becomes a drain on their time and hinders the company’s ability to grow.

Instead of using paper forms by hand for pre trip inspections, companies can move to digital apps so that drivers do not need to pick up and bring back paperwork back to the office each day. This eliminates the manual back and forth, enabling employees to complete forms on a mobile device and instantly have it available to access in the office.

Going digital can translate into real cost savings and productivity gains. Take for example Centurion Transport, who managed to save over $100,000 annually by switching to mobile reports. This example shows how eliminating the manual workflows that exist in your business can lead to greater efficiencies over time.

Another common challenge with paper forms for pre-trip inspections has always been the amount of time it takes to complete the process. One trucking company even reported that it could be common for their drivers to neglect to fill out certain forms because they were so time-consuming to complete.

Anything that can be done to speed up the process will help to ensure compliance from employees and accurate data collection. Technology for mobile inspections has many features that can make it faster in the field to fill out forms. For example, you could pull in data from a database like a CRM system to automatically pre-populate any known fields, instead of having to complete them by hand. When evaluating technology for pre trip inspections, consider how the features and functionality can help to save time and eliminate manual work in the field.


Improve Data Insights and Visibility into Your Operations

You can see how paper forms would lead to transportation companies having very little visibility into the status and condition of their fleet in the field. This can also make it difficult to be proactive with decision-making when information is slow moving. A key benefit of going digital is the ability to capture and report on information in real-time, for greater visibility into your business operations.

For the transportation industry, having real-time information can benefit you to see how operations are going in the field. Crew members in the field submit their daily reports from a mobile device and teams in the office are alerted in real-time. Data is then available for reporting and analytics dashboards, so that companies can spot trends and take the appropriate action faster. When it comes to decision-making, timeliness and accuracy of data are incredibly important for operational leaders. Going digital allows you to give actionable insights when there is greater visibility into your fleet operations. Instead of waiting to respond when an issue happens, companies can be more proactive and respond in a timely manner.

Another benefit is the ability to track and report on compliance. With forms like pre trip inspections and other safety forms, it’s important to ensure that all employees are following the company protocols when it comes to safety. Going digital allows you to report on compliance, as well as any incidents, to see opportunities for improvement across disparate teams in the field. 

Some companies will also have educational or training content available through mobile apps, allowing employees to go through learning programs to better prepare for the job. For example, pre trip inspection tests can be administered through a mobile app, providing new drivers with a resource to practice and learn about the pre trip inspection requirements.

Using technology like GoCanvas for pre trip inspections can streamline your operations and provide your business with better data quality for reporting. To learn more about how it works, contact our team any time for a guided walk through of our product. You can also access GoCanvas through our free trial and download the pre-trip inspection apps to see them in action.