Bartec Municipal Technologies gives local councils the tools they need to manage waste well. Imagine knowing where every single house is, what bins they have, and when they need to be emptied. Truck drivers get a handy tablet in their cabin that shows them where to go and lets them report any issues like contaminated or missing bins, all in real-time. This way, if residents call the council to complain, they've got the info right there to tell them what happened.
While Sygic is part of the system for domestic waste collections, it doesn't really shine there because the routes are mostly the same each time. For commercial waste pickups at places like shops, universities, and factories, where the routes can change frequently, that's where the navigation software shows its true value.
"We use Sygic's navigation to guide our drivers to their destinations. A driver might know where a place is, but the challenge lies in getting there efficiently from his current location. And it's not just about routing to pickup locations; it's also about getting to disposal points or back to the depot. Let's not forget, these guys are driving 26- to 32-tonne trucks, so they can't go everywhere a car can. That's why truck-specific attributes are crucial to us." Tim Hobbs, CEO at Bartec Municipal Technologies explains.
Navigation Precision: Beyond Doorsteps to Exact Bin Locations
“We can send GPS coordinates straight to the Sygic app, directing the driver not just to a front-door address but to the specific location where the bins are—often around the back. The system keeps learning these precise locations from previous pickups. ” Tim sheds light on the nuances involved in navigating waste management.
For new customers, the process kicks off with an initial delivery of bins to the correct location. The coordinates of this first drop-off point are recorded. So by the time the second pickup rolls around, pickup location is already locked in and good to go.
“For device management, we use Android tablets that are set to kiosk mode, meaning they can only run specific applications — in this case, our app and Sygic. The transition between the two apps is so seamless it almost feels like they're embedded into one another.” Tim elaborates.
Adapting to Local Flavors
While most Councils across the UK aim for the same waste collection goals, the approach can differ from one municipality to another. Whether it's the frequency of pickups or the type of waste collected, each council has its own unique set of circumstances. Bartec steps in to smooth out the differences, offering both streamlined route planning and expert advice to make their processes even sharper.
Navigating Real-World Quirks
Life isn't always by the book. When it comes to waste collection, residents have their own ideas about where to place bins, sometimes even on different streets. Despite these curveballs, Bartec's clients haven't raised any concerns.
Off-road routing is also not a concern for waste collectors; if a new development isn't yet mapped, the crew gets as close as possible and improvises from there. Thankfully, as Tim mentions, frequent map updates minimize such scenarios.
Ever had a moment where a complaint left you puzzled, only for the mystery to unravel itself? That's what happened to Tim. They fielded criticism about "terrible navigation", but a quick chat revealed the issue—clients were using Google Maps, not Sygic Professional Navigation, so the issue was easily resolved.
Navigating Uncertainties and the Future
The waste management industry is currently in a state of flux, awaiting new government guidelines. With looming financial constraints and growing commitments to reduce carbon emissions, the push for efficient waste separation, including food waste, is more vital than ever. Recruiting drivers for waste management is also increasingly challenging due to a variety of factors, including Brexit, COVID, and better-paying opportunities in other industries.
Apart from grappling with external challenges, councils have their own set of operational hurdles to overcome. They're moving past the era of juggling spreadsheets and paper documents for waste management. The goal now is seamless integration into the various systems councils already operate, ranging from financial to vehicle management.
On top of that, route optimization for waste collection trucks is no trivial matter; getting it right can yield substantial cost savings. So, being able to blend into a council's existing setup while also nailing the route planning is what everyone's looking for.
Bartec Municipal Technologies has taken significant steps in addressing localized needs, extending their services beyond just waste collection. Features have been developed to manage specific community issues like fly-tipping (illegal dumping of waste) and graffiti, aiming to make neighborhoods cleaner and residents happier.
The focus is shifting towards enhancing the experience for residents and street cleaners alike. Customer-facing portals are making it easier for people to schedule waste pickups from the comfort of their homes. And the street cleaning crews are benefiting from straightforward, user-friendly technologies — a simple scan of a QR code inside a litter bin is all it takes to let everyone know that it's been emptied, or even if it's damaged. These small changes are helping workers who aren't tech-savvy or fluent in English. It’s all about keeping it simple and efficient, for everyone involved.
About Bartec Municipal Technologies
Bartec Municipal Technologies is the leading supplier of environmental and service management software to UK local authorities. Collective is a comprehensive system designed to cut the cost and improve the quality of all front-line services, including waste management, street scene, grounds maintenance and community safety. If you need to reduce the cost of your waste and recycling operations, call us today! Customers report extensive savings from streamlined administration, reduced mileage, increased recycling, route optimisation and more. Learn more at www.bartecmunicipal.com