Handsfree Group Summer Family BBQ 2018

Summer Heatwave

On the scorching sunny summer afternoon of Saturday 14th July 2018, Handsfree Group held their annual Summer Family BBQ at the Urmston Sports Club in Manchester and what a fantastic day it was! Made all the better by the fantastic weather, this year’s event was great fun and extremely memorable.

 

World Class

Local butcher and UK Sausage Champions PJ Howarth & Son attended and brought along a fantastic spread and it’s fair to say it was out of this world, BBQ’d to perfection by Scott and Matt.

 

Friendly Competition

A fun Sports Day was held which included a sack race, egg and spoon race and sprints.  Medals were given for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place. Well done to all those who firstly participated in the heat of the afternoon and furthermore won a medal.

The one sports event that will be long remembered is Beat the Keeper, where Rocco Johnson broke his wrist saving a penalty! After a trip to the hospital he bravely came back to the BBQ and continued having fun. He may have broken his wrist but he still managed to save the goal!!

 

Sethish Beatz (DJ)

Handsfree Groups very own, Seth Oduro (who is a DJ in his spare time and is known in the music arena as Sethish Beatz) kindly provided his services as DJ and everyone relaxed to lots of R&B and summer tunes making the atmosphere incredible.

 

Dogs and Ferrets

A Dog Contest was held for the family pooches to show off their amazing talents.  It was MC’d and judged by some of the children which made it all the more fun.

 

The categories and winners were:  

  • Most Waggiest Tail; won by Sam Thacker’s dog Monty
  • Most Obedient Dog; won again by Monty
  • Best Trained; won by Matt Johnson’s dog Poppy
  • The dog judges Would Most Like to Take Home; won by Dave Wilson’s dog Oscar  

Understandably, there was fierce competition for all the prizes.

 

James F and his family kindly brought along their two ferrets, Rosie & Rocky.  They were a big hit especially with the children, practically every child present had plenty of cuddles and walks with them.  


Deborah Bourne commented “It was lovely spending time with the team and their families, socialising away from the work environment, with great food, entertainment and sunshine”.

 

Thank you

Huge thanks and appreciation goes to our wonderful social secretary Natalie Sharman, who single handedly organised the whole day, she did an absolutely fantastic job.

 

Thank you to everyone who attended and made the day so much fun.

Connected products for the new Mercedes Benz Sprinter

In one of our previous blogs, (New Mercedes Sprinter Van is coming…and Handsfree Group are ready for it!) we outlined the products that will even further enhance the driving experience of the new Mercedes Sprinter.  We also have a full range of connected products available from Handsfree Group for the new vans.

 

Datalive your new Sprinter vans

Datalive helps fleet managers improve the efficiency, protection and safety of their drivers and vehicles, while significantly improving their fleets green credentials.

We give customers the intelligence needed to optimise their fleet performance, by customising our modular vehicle data solutions to meet their exact requirements. Our experience ranges from designing fully integrated telematics solutions to basic single feature systems.

 

Datalive Telematics

Our versatile Datalive telematics solutions are modular. Our specialist team build custom systems for our customers, that meet a companies exact requirements – so we are fully prepared for the new Mercedes Sprinter fleets.

Datalive Telematics Solutions:

Live Tracking
  • improving customer response and delivery times with better MPG, improved green credentials, increased productivity and more responsible drivers, whilst eliminating unauthorised vehicle usage and reducing insurance premiums.
Geofence
  • Our team of specialists help fleet managers enhance security, improve utilisation, increase efficiency and support compliance, by setting up geofences.
Driver ID
  • Get visibility of exactly who is driving any given vehicle and their precise location. Optimise your resources, while maintaining your duty of care by using Datalive Driver ID.
Reporting
  • Reduce fuel consumption and operating costs by configuring multi-dimensional custom reports on several vehicle and driver performance aspects, through the Datalive Performance & integration reporting suite.
Remote Safety
  • Protect the welfare of vulnerable or lone workers while ensuring goods are being transported safely and correctly. Datalive monitors all driver activity and critical vehicle data. Fleet managers can easily analyse real-time or historical vehicle information.
Communication
  • Deliver timely information to drivers in an efficient, responsible and legally compliant way. Working together, Datalive telematics and in-vehicle onboard diagnostics can report highly accurate information about the performance of your drivers, vehicles and their engines.
Efficiency Reporting
  • Maximise the efficiency of any driver and vehicle over a specified timeframe, by using the Datalive Telematics customisable reporting suite.
Driver behaviour
  • Manage risk, and fulfil your ‘duty of care’ obligations for drivers. The Datalive driver behaviour module scores driving style and identifies those people driving efficiently.
  • Monitor aggressive or defensive driver styles of individuals or group with applied risk scoring.
  • Datalive driver behaviour provides you with the information you need to target training precisely where it is required, as well as reward and encourage safe driving.

Datalive – Fleet Management Tools

Fleet Management Tools from Datalive helps operators diagnose and report any issues that may impact transport efficiency, by checking vehicle compliance and recording critical fleet management information

Comprising of an extensive app and configurable I.T solution, Fleet Management Tools effectively helps fleet managers perform the audits and checks necessary to ensure a safe and optimised operation.

Datalive’s fleet management system includes defect reporting, vehicle check, fleet check and depot audits.

Fleet Management Tools Solutions:

Defect report tool
  • App on Android and IOS to help fleet operators keep on top of vehicle technology and equipment. Defects on vehicles are often overlooked because it can be timely to report a problem or defect. This app makes it simple.
Vehicle check tool app
  • Designed to eliminate paperwork. Now fleet managers can be sure that all vehicles are checked on a daily basis. Safety and damage checks set daily and alerted if not completed. The app will not allow a user to move to another vehicle until a full 360 degree check has been completed.
Vehicle check audit tool
  • Designed for fleet managers, engineers and auditors. The App is similar to the Vehicle Check Tool, however it means any vehicle can be checked across the whole fleet and is specifically used to report on anomalies.
Depot audit tool
  • Vehicle maintenance is integral to an efficient transport operation, it’s important to check regularly that all the tools are in the right place.
  • Within the Vehicle Audit Checking, there is an additional tool for auditing the depot. This tool is an interactive electronic list of check items to inspect within the depot.

Get in touch to demo Datalive today!

The Commercial Vehicle Show 2018 – “The Big One”

The Show

It is undoubtedly the biggest and best show of the year for the road transport and commercial vehicle sectors in the UK.  So it is no surprise that Handsfree Group were exhibiting again this year at the 2018 CV Show.  

The show attracts over 20,000 visitors to the NEC in Birmingham each year and this year was no exception.  It is THE place for sector suppliers to showcase their products and services.

Handsfree Group did not disappoint the crowd with their eye catching show stand which you, literally, could not miss.

 

The Handsfree Group’s Demonstration Stand

Handsfree Group had their biggest exhibition stand to date and showcased the best in vehicle technology on the market.

Existing and new customers alike were given the opportunity to browse, watch demonstrations and discuss the products and services on display with the expert Handsfree Group team.

The exhibition stand showcased a wide variety of Handfree Group’s products and services, placing focus on the Install, Installhub and Datalive divisions, on their vehicle technology brand TECh and on Mobileye.  

The Install division are experts in specialist vehicle communication, safety systems and security, and all Handsfree Group Engineers are FCS FITAS 1362 Accredited.  Working from the Installhub, Handsfree Group’s 10’000 sq ft ‘Van Conversion Centre’, and offering nationwide engineer coverage, the Install division has the capacity to handle thousands of specialist vehicle conversions per year.

The Datalive division offers telematics, Live CCTV and Fleet Management Tools – delivering a full suite of fleet management tools to assist with improving productivity, improving safety and reducing risk through the use of telematics and live vehicle CCTV.

TECh offers expert advice, a Nationwide fitting service, International shipping and a simple order process, all run through the TECh Store, offering products to enhance vehicle communication, safety and security.

Handsfree Group are the UK distributor for Mobileye, the global leader in Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and autonomous driving technologies.  Handsfree Group supply and install the latest driver assistance products which ensure fleet drivers are fully protected against unexpected activity on the roads.  The Mobileye products are also available through the TECh Store.

 

The Team’s Thoughts

“The footfall was fantastic this year at the CV Show, with a huge number of decision makers attending the show.

We had customers from near and far visit the stand for refreshments and demonstrations on the developments of the Datalive product set, connected fleet tools such as connect CCTV, tracking and telematics and fleet management tools.

It was great to see existing customers and be able to show them our new in vehicle technology advancements. The highlights in technology advancements from Handsfree Group were the improved features of the TECh PT5 cab phone range, including panic buttons and warning beacons and the huge success of Datalive tracking and telematics and connected vehicle CCTV, installed to industry FCS1362 and FITAS standards.

Another highlight was bringing the northern and southern Handsfree Group sales teams together to run the exhibition stand and having the opportunity for a great team night out, to show Handsfree Group’s appreciation of their expert and dedicated staff.”

 

If you missed the show you can arrange a visit from our demo van, please contact us to book an appointment with our expert team.

FPS Expo 2018 – Award Winning Exhibition

The Exhibition

The FPS Expo exhibition is the leading event for the oil distribution industry in the UK and Ireland and took place this year in mid April.  The event is organised by The Federation of Petroleum Suppliers and is now in it’s 38th year.  Handsfree Group have exhibited at the event for the past 12 years, with great success, so exhibiting again this year was an honour and a pleasure for the team.   

The event was held at the spectacular Exhibition Centre Liverpool (ECL) and brought together over 150 exhibitors all looking to launch or review products and services and meet new or existing clients.  

 

The Handsfree Group’s Demonstration Stand

Handsfree Group’s stand at the FPS Expo was a showcase of three core divisions covering a wide variety of products and services:

Install – Fleet Vehicle Installations – Handsfree Group engineers operate across the UK and are experts in specialist vehicle communication, safety systems and security. All Handsfree Group Engineers are FCS FITAS 1362 Accredited, providing peace of mind that the technology in the vehicles is being serviced or installed by qualified industry professionals. Handsfree Group’s company wide certification demonstrates to customers understanding and assures industry standards will be upheld.  The Installhub is Install’s 10’000 sq ft ‘Service Centre’.  It has the capacity to handle thousands of specialist vehicle conversions per year and is Handsfree Group’s biggest workshop site to date.

Datalive – Telematics, Live Vehicle CCTV & Fleet Management Tools – Datalive provides fleet owners with the appropriate fleet tracking, data and reports to efficiently run their fleets. Datalive delivers a full suite of fleet management tools to assist with improving productivity, improving safety and reducing risk.

TECh – Vehicle Technology – Expert Advice, Nationwide fitting service, International shipping, simple order process.  The TECh Store offers products to enhance vehicle communication, safety and security, some of which were on display and available for demonstration at the FPS Expo, including the range of PT5 cab phones.

The Team’s Thoughts

“The week of the exhibition was a beautiful one, the weather was glorious and the venue was outstanding.

The FPS Expo was a busy event and was a fantastic opportunity to showcase our new in-vehicle technology advancements.

The highlights in technology advancements from Handsfree Group were the improved features of the TECh PT5, including panic buttons and warning beacons. We also received some great feedback on the success of Datalive tracking, telematics and connected vehicle CCTV, all installed to industry FCS1362 and FITAS standards.

It really was good to talk to so many existing and new customers all working together towards fleet safety and efficiency.”

Peak Hire Vehicles Require Temporary Charging Cradles

Handsfree Group supply D.I.Y fit portable charging cradles and mounting plates to cover peak delivery season

It’s the most wonderful time of the year

Yes, you’ve got it, Christmas.  It is also one of the busiest times of the year for one of Handsfree Group’s most prestigious and valued customers. Being one of the UK’s leading delivery companies, Christmas is their peak season.  In order to meet customer demand, they employ thousands of peak delivery drivers UK wide, hire vehicles for each of those drivers and provide essential equipment to enable the drivers to make the deliveries efficiently, successfully and most importantly, in time for Christmas.  

Handheld PDA

The essential equipment is, of course, the handheld PDA.  Then the question arises – how to keep those PDA’s charged and secure without installing a permanent cradle?  

Therefore, due to the vehicles being on hire, the need for 1500+ temporary charging cradles arose. The main requirement was that the cradles could be easily installed by the customer.  

The TECh

Handsfree Group’s solution was the TECh CN70 Charging Cradle and Zirkona windscreen suction mount.  

TECh CN70 Charging Cradle

A durable charging and securing solution for the drivers’ handheld PDA’s – the most important tool of the job. The CN70 charging cradle, designed and manufactured by TECh, was the ideal choice.  

The CN70 cradle boasts LED Power Indicator, so the driver is assured their PDA is charging, an internal voltage clamp which prevents over-voltage to the device and an internal voltage regulator which ensures consistent output voltages.

Each CN70 mounting screw fastens into a precision brass bolt and is fixed during injection moulding for maximum strength. The six locating bolts mount to the supplied backplate which then attaches securely to a steel chassis for a rigid and accurate fit.

A locating ’pin’ ensures the device cannot be inserted incorrectly and multiple security bolts provide added strength. The CN70 internal auto-reset switch prevents any risk of a short-circuit across pins and the tamper-proof screws, with anti-vibrate and shake-proof washers, ensure the device remains secure when the vehicle is in motion.

Zirkona Windscreen Suction Mount with Diamond Mounting Plate

Fulfilling the main requirement of a self-fit cradle, the Diamond Mounting Plate is simply fitted to the vehicle using a suction cup which attaches to the vehicle’s windscreen.

The CN70 charging cradle is securely fixed to the Diamond Mounting bracket using the backplate supplied with the cradle.

To discuss these products or any other requirements please contact us and speak to our expert team.

Extensive safety & communication vehicle upgrade for a valued customer

One Stop Shop

A valued and prestigious customer of Handsfree Group took delivery of 100 brand new Mercedes Sprinter vans, all on the same day, and they looked no further than the Handsfree Group’s Install Division when deciding how to kit them out with the necessary technology to run their new fleet.  

The install requirements were extensive, as they needed to ensure their fleet was efficient and safe so it made perfect sense for the Handsfree Group’s TECh team to supply the technology and the Install Hub to undertake the work.

Install Hub

Handsfree Group’s Install Division comprises of FITAS Accredited Engineers, Sales, Projects, Parts, Logistics and Customer Services staff, all working together to provide the best possible service.

Install Hub is Handsfree Groups 10,000ft² specialist vehicle conversion workshop in York, which enables quality offsite installations and full vehicle conversion fit outs for their clients.

Handsfree Groups dynamic Install division were able to complete the installations on all 100 Mercedes Sprinter vans, through Install Hub in record time.

TECh Technology

Each of the 100 vehicles were fitted with the following:

Electronic Cargo Lock

Ensuring the safety of the freight, the Electronic Cargo Lock eliminates the risk of freight theft by electronically deadlocking the doors upon closing which can only then be opened using an electronic key.  The electronic key is a quick and convenient way for the driver to access the vehicle.

TECh PT5 Cab phone

The PT5 is fixed to and powered by the vehicle which eliminates the need to use a mobile phone whilst driving and will never suffer that inconvenient flat battery, get lost, damaged due to being dropped, or left behind.  It also gives peace of mind to the driver by having safe access to emergency services at their fingertips.

Reverse Bleep

A white sound reversing bleeper is a must to the customer, ensuring the safety of the public by alerting them to the vehicle slow-speed movement.

Doppler Radar Reversing Sensor

This was the best option due to the stealthy installation and lack of physical sensors, eliminating the risk of damage to a traditional sensor while loading and unloading the van and from excessive jet washing, keeping the fleet gleaming with pride.  

Reverse Brake Light Camera System

Using a brake light mounted camera gives a more factory fitted appearance and mounts the camera up high, giving the optimal view to the rear of the vehicle which not only protects the rear of the vehicle and objects in the biggest blind spot of a van/commercial vehicle, but also provides the perfect view for reversing into a busy loading bay.

TECh CN70 Charging Cradle

The customer also required a solution for their drivers’ handheld PDA’s – the most important tool of the job, containing all the information for the day ahead. The biggest issue with a portable device is battery life so a dash fitted docking station is the best way to keep the device charged and secure whilst the vehicle is in motion.  The installation of the cradle also reduced unnecessary and unsightly cables and chargers all over the dash and cab whilst also keeping it in reach of the driver. Having it dash mounted also removes the need to have another device stuck to the windscreen, therefore improving the driver’s view and keeping driver and public safety as the first priority.

If this sounds like the type of install your business needs then why not contact Handsfree Group now to discuss your requirements?

http://www.handsfree.co.uk/install/