Digitally Transforming In-Field Fleet Operations

October 7, 2021

Welcome to our Monday Minute Interview Series

In this series, Christopher Candy, VP, Business Development at Mobilizz™ sits down with the people and businesses of the Telematics industry. This week we caught up with:

Amar Makim

Amar is a Partner Manager at ProntoForms who is focused on building relationships and expanding ProntoForms’ partner ecosystem. He has been in the digital transformation space, specifically around mobile field processes and workflows, for 6 years.


Chris and Amar cover a variety of topics including:

  • digital workflow processes
  • how fleets are adapting to COVID
  • the keys to adopting new technology

Who is ProntoForms?
ProntoForms is a digital forms and workflow organization that helps eliminate manual processes, empower technicians to reliably complete work, and feed collected data across systems. The company is based in Ottawa with over 150 employees, is publicly traded, and have been in business for 20 years.

What is a ‘workflow process’?
We digitize processes in the field, such as a Bill of Lading, in real-time and we bring that data back to the office ASAP instead of waiting for the driver or technician to manually hand it in.

What is your secret sauce?
We are a low-code app platform meaning that anyone can build a form with point-and-click and drag-and-drop technology. If you know how to use the internet and email, you can build a form in our program—no coding knowledge required. You can build a form and have it in your team’s hands in 30 minutes.

What is the biggest hurdle organizations face when moving from paper-based to digital-based forms?
People are nervous about change. Technicians are used to pen and paper and digital can seem intimidating. So, the transition needs to be as easy as possible and the digital platform needs to be simple to use. It takes the average user 8 minutes to go from paper to using Pronto Forms on their smart device. We make it incredibly easy for anyone to learn our system. We are fully focused on the end user and we work with a lot of construction companies.

What do you say to organizations who say that paper forms work for them and they aren’t interested in this technology?
Technology is more and more prevalent in our businesses. Think of when software like Quickbooks came out and accounting went digital. This is a shift that is happening regardless and has become a core competitive differentiator. If your technicians are arriving on site with crumpled paper and a three-day wait until billing while your competition has a sleek smart device and a seamless real-time billing or inventory solution, it really puts a limit on growth. We sit our customers down to understand the manual process as it exists today. We then break down those manual processes and identify a ton of opportunities for efficiency improvements.

Why is ProntoForms a key tool that successful organizations should add into their suite of operational solutions / in the in-field fleet management environment?
It is all about extending technology for the back office out into the field. Everyone out in the field is essentially driving your business and if you have technology for the back office but are equipping your field staff with pen and paper, that is similar to buying a Ferrari and putting a Honda engine in it.

How does ProntoForms work together with telematics to provide a rock-solid solution?
Usually, once a driver gets to a destination in their fleet vehicle, they get out of the vehicle to do their job and the telematics data ends. We cover what the ‘driver’ does outside of the vehicle. For example, we can pull in telematics data to auto-populate certain fields in the forms, saving time and minimizing errors.

We also are fully integrated with the Geotab Drive ELD app. The driver can run their logs and have any and all other digital forms together in the same app. This is especially beneficial for vocational-type vehicles that need specific additional inspection forms such as dump trucks or boom trucks.

How have fleets changed business operations since COVID?
Fleets have had to change the way they sanitize their vehicles and how a new driver begins a pre-trip.
This has required organizations to overhaul their inspection forms, add new safety processes, and also create new post-inspection review processes. The days of simply giving the keys to another driver are long gone.

How does ProntoForms  help fleets navigate COVID?
Companies need to make sure their drivers feel safe and healthy before they get in the vehicle. Because of our flexibility and speed in deploying new processes, we have quickly built simple self-assessments that help tell employees what to do based on their responses. We have also seen these folks build these assessment questions into their existing DVIR.

Being able to add these processes immediately when urgency is key and tracking responses in real-time provides immediate impact across the organization.

What are some key success stories with your customers?
Because we cover all services—not just fleet—we started off with one large utility fleet that has now grown to include the field services team, the Health and Safety team, and their inspectors. ProntoForms is full suite of solutions for all aspects of fieldwork.

One Geotab customer, who safeguards buildings from lightening strikes, has 40 technicians and they estimate each technician saves one hour per day on filling out forms alone. This has freed up time allowing them to be able to complete more jobs. They are saving around $25,000 per month and that does not include improvement on efficiency, on billing (issue invoices sooner), or stop-work issues after they submit a report.

Where do you see the digital forms space going in the next few years?
In the next 2 to 3 years, every fleet and field staff will be using a digital form, plain and simple. The same way fax went to email.

ProntoForms is a low-code app solution for the field that build apps in minutes—not weeks or months. Using the ProntoForms platform, process owners can build out apps to suit workflows across the service spectrum. It empowers technicians to complete complex work and collect rich data in a reliable, scalable way. ProntoForms has out-of-the-box integrations with leading systems of record and execution and bridges the data gaps across these systems to help organizations achieve digital transformation goals.