Evolving partnership drives efficiencies at Travis Perkins Group

December 07, 2016 by David Turner

Travis Perkins Group’s partnership with Briggs Equipment continues to evolve to support the changing needs of 2,500 branches and the Wickes operation.  Spanning more than 20 years and currently driven by technology developments and wider commercial challenges, the relationship is enabling the UK’s premier builder’s merchant and home improvements retailer to grow its business by maximising key efficiencies.

When Travis Perkins Group has a problem, the strength of the relationship is such that the company will liaise with Briggs to determine how best to solve it. Briggs understands that, as the Travis Perkins business develops, the equipment at its sites has to change to take advantage of market developments and keep pace with commercial demands. Briggs routinely devises solutions that help the company to reduce costs or improve productivity, and often both.

Reliable engineering resource

From Inverness to Penzance, Travis PerkinsGroup operates around 2,500 sites and all are supported by Briggs, along with the Wickes operation. Since many branches have only one forklift truck, a reliable and flexible engineering resource that will keep this vital piece of equipment operating at peak performance is essential to overall business success. 

Numbering some 600 engineers, Briggs operates one of the UK’s biggest mobile engineering workforces. This skilled and highly experienced team supports a wide range of warehouse equipment, including powered pallet trucks, VNA machines and counterbalance forklift trucks, plus sweepers and Combilift and JCB equipment. An engineer’s average response time is less than two hours, anywhere in the UK – another key factor which sets Briggs Equipment apart from the competition.

Account management with a difference

Along with full on-site maintenance, the level of support provided by Briggs includes rigorous account management. Unlike the traditional approach to fleet management comprising routine monthly, weekly and daily reviews, Briggs works closely with Travis Perkins to assess the needs of the business as a whole before agreeing how best to develop the company’s service offer to meet its customers’ needs.

As a multi-site operation, Travis Perkins wants what it calls ‘one window on the world’, or, in other words, the ability to see at a glance how its fleet is performing at any given time. This is where Briggs Equipment’s market-leading asset management tool, BE Portal, which affords customers total fleet transparency, comes into its own.

Improving fleet performance

Travis Perkins was instrumental in the development of BE Portal, and the system now plays a fundamental role in the way the company manages its equipment fleet and Briggs meets agreed service KPIs.  Travis Perkins branch managers use BE Portal to improve day-to-day performance, while 24/7 access to reliable data supports long-term fleet management decision-making at a senior level for Travis Perkins Group. In particular, the ability to review ongoing costs on a live basis enables both companies to work together proactively to lower costs and increase productivity.

Graham Bellman, Travis Perkins’ Group Fleet Director, said: “In practical terms, BE Portal has speeded up our operation. It’s a fact that mechanical equipment needs maintaining and we all appreciate that, from time to time, things will go wrong. What’s really important is the speed and efficient way in which Briggs is able to respond to put them right.”

As the Travis Perkins Group grows, it continues to challenge Briggs to find solutions that will support its business development outside of the traditional materials handling arena. Safety is a prime example of where Briggs adds value. Most recently, working closely with both operators and Travis Perkins Group managers, Briggs devised a special safety mat to help forklift drivers and pedestrians identify potential risks and take extra care so that everyone can work safely.