Porterbrook Case Study

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Bespoke product application
Business Intelligence

Porterbrook specialises in the leasing of all types of railway rolling stock and associated equipment to freight. Porterbrook has been at the heart of Britain's rail network for over 25 years, and owns almost a third of the national passenger rail fleet.


To take a fresh approach to rolling stock inspection and rolling stock handovers providing a smarter way of capturing the data specific to various asset types and easily generating complex reports. To reduce the back-office administration of task creation and report generation using smarter tools. Replace a legacy system that no longer delivered on the needs of the Porterbrook business. The current solution used by Porterbrook was built on old technology that was no longer going to be supported. Porterbrook needed a new solution and took the opportunity to revisit the inspection and reporting needs within the business. Engineers required a simple method of cataloguing defects against a job and asset that could then be quickly turned into a detailed report that could be shared either internally or with the asset owner.


Combining the flexibility of mobile and cloud-based technologies, Collabaro is a solution for managing service jobs & capturing structured data from the field, including images. Collabaro allows Porterbrook to create detailed inspection & repair reports to share with stakeholders whilst ensuring HSE checks are consistently completed as required. Inspectors’ timesheets are created in the background providing analysis on work types and timings. Porterbrook is now able to manage a higher volume of rolling stock inspections per engineer by significantly reducing the amount of back-office administration through the use of Collabaro.
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Using Collabaro has provided tighter control over the work of multiple inspectors and preparing detailed service reports will no longer be a burden. Easy to use tools allow Porterbrook to deliver data capture forms onto engineers’ iPads and report templates that will use the data to produce professional quality work reports for their clients. Collabaro can manage repeat inspection processes building a history of defects that you need for condition monitoring.
By providing the data required to move from a planned to a predictive maintenance strategy, Collabaro can drive O&M costs down. Innovative technologies enable multiple mobile engineers to collaborate on tasks, sharing data (such as readings and images) in real-time with both each other and with remote project managers. This ability allows Porterbrook to effectively share expertise across multiple jobs.
“Collabaro was selected as the replacement for a legacy field defect recording solution because of the flexibility it offers in creating customised, rules-based, data gathering tasks that can be used to populate template-based reports. This allows Porterbrook to generate sophisticated customer reports within minutes of an inspection being completed.
Inspectors have access to the previous defect history of any vehicle, even when a network connection is unavailable, enabling re-inspection processes, ensuring that asset devaluing issues such as corrosion or water ingress are not left to deteriorate”.
Andrew Swingewood, Director of Digital Technology, Porterbrook
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