Tracking Downtime

Downtime can be tracked for vehicles that are inoperable or considered to be down. This can be useful in determining the performance and productivity of the fleet. For example, by tracking downtime, you may notice vehicles are down longer than they should be because they are waiting for parts. By stocking more of the needed parts, you can get vehicles back on the road sooner; hence, increasing the vehicle productivity and revenue earning power.
Listed below are brief descriptions of the setup and procedures involved in using the Downtime Tracking feature. Unless otherwise stated, detailed instructions are provided in the following sections.
The Setup:

  • Set the "Downtime" switch to YES (SSM, switch 11).
  • Set up downtime status codes and descriptions (SSD).

The Procedure:

  • Create work orders and work order lines in the usual manner. A downtime listing will be created for each job at this time.
  • Activate or start the tracking of downtime hours. This process will vary. If you are using Paperless Shop, the "Downtime" switch (SSM, switch 11) determines whether downtime tracking will start automatically or manually. If you are not using Paperless Shop, this is done manually in the work order (WW).
  • Post time and materials to the jobs in the usual manner.
  • De-activate or stop the tracking of downtime hours when the work has been completed and the vehicle is no longer down.

Setting the Downtime Configuration

  1. Select System > Setup System Switches > Main System Parameters from the RTA main menu (SSM).
  2. Enter password level 3.
  3. Select the "Downtime" switch (switch 11).
  • Activate Downtime Module: Select Yes to activate the Downtime feature.
  • Auto post Active/Listed: If you are using Paperless Shop, select Yes to have the system automatically start and stop tracking downtime hours as mechanics clock on and off jobs. On this setting, downtime hours accumulate only when a mechanic is actually clocked on a job. For example, if a mechanic clocks onto a job for a few hours, clocks off for lunch, and clocks back into that job, the time off during lunch does not accumulate as downtime hours.

Select No if you're not using Paperless Shop OR to prompt mechanics to update downtime statuses when they clock off Paperless jobs. This setting gives mechanics control over whether or not downtime hours will continue to accumulate, for example, when they clock off for lunch or go home for the day.

Downtime Status Codes

The next step is to set up/review the status codes used in tracking downtime. Select Sytem > Setup System Switches > Downtime Options from the RTA main menu (SSD). The Downtime Options window appears. The first three statuses shown are used by the system and cannot be modified. The remaining status lines (4 – 9) can be defined as needed.

  • Code: Enter up to two characters for the status code.
  • Description: Enter up to 15 characters for the status description.
  • Trackable: Select this checkbox to make this status a trackable downtime status. When a trackable status is applied to a vehicle (e.g., ACTIVE), downtime hours will start accumulating.
  • Order: This field sets the downtime status priority. For example, when a work order contains two or more work order lines that use different, trackable downtime statuses, the order set here determines which status has priority over the other. Downtime hours will accumulate only for the job with the higher priority. This prevents downtime hours from being overstated.
  • Hours per Day: Enter the maximum number of hours the fleet can be utilized in one day. This number is used to compute downtime statistics (ROW).

Downtime Tracking Procedures

Downtime is tracked through work orders. Work orders can be created and processed in the usual manner. The only additional steps are starting and stopping the downtime clock. Posting costs to the work order does not affect the tracking of downtime hours; therefore, this can be done at any point prior to closing the work order.
NOTE: If you are using Paperless Shop please read "Notes for Paperless Shop Users" to ensure downtime hours are calculated as needed.

Tracking Downtime in Work Orders (WW)

Downtime listing records are created in the system when work order lines are added. You will be prompted for the listing date and time. Although a listing is created, tracking of downtime does not start until the ACTIVE status or one of the other trackable statuses is applied. This helps to keep the downtime hours accurate for shops that pre-build work orders since the vehicle isn't down until it is in the shop and ready to be worked on.

Starting the Clock

Once the vehicle comes in and is ready to be worked on, you can start the clock for tracking downtime by doing the following:

  1. Call up the work order and answer prompts as needed to bring up the work order (WW).
  2. Highlight the desired work order line and select Edit > Post Line from the menu or click on the line number button.
  3. Select the Downtime radio button and a window similar to the following appears.
  4. Select a radio button from the Status code section and then choose Apply (this button becomes available when the status code changes). The current system date and time will be used as the default start date and time.

NOTE: Vehicle downtime hours accumulate only if a trackable downtime status is applied. Also, if trackable downtime statuses are currently applied to more than one work order line, downtime hours will accumulate only for the downtime status with the highest priority. Refer to "Downtime Status Codes" in the previous section for more information if needed.

Stopping the Clock

Be sure to stop the downtime clock once the job is complete and the vehicle is no longer down. This is done by repeating steps 1 – 3 listed above and then selecting the CLOSED status code. The current system date and time is used as the close date for the downtime listing. If necessary, you may select the Edit End Date/Time checkbox to modify the end date and time.

Notes for Paperless Shop Users

To make tracking downtime in Paperless Shop an automatic process, set Auto post Active/Listed in the "Downtime" switch to YES (SSM, switch 11). Downtime listings are created in the same manner as described in the previous section.

Clocking onto a Paperless Job

Mechanics will see no difference when clocking onto a job; there are no additional prompts to answer. When a mechanic clocks onto a job, the status of the downtime listing automatically changes from LISTED to ACTIVE. At this point, the system will start tracking the mechanic labor hours as well as the vehicle downtime hours. To change the downtime status code, the mechanic can select View > Downtime from the menu or click the Downtime Tracking icon in the toolbar. This brings up the Downtime window where the status code can be changed by selecting the appropriate radio button. Keep in mind that downtime hours are tracked only for status codes flagged as trackable; hence, if the status is changed to a non-trackable status code, the system will stop counting the downtime hours. Also, if another downtime status is currently applied to another job on the same work order, downtime hours will be counted only for the downtime status with the highest priority. Refer to "Downtime Status Codes" for more information if needed.

Clocking off a Paperless Job

What happens when a mechanic clocks off a job varies depending on the setting of the Auto post Active/Listed in the "Downtime" switch (SSM, switch 11).

  • When the Auto post Active/Listed in the "Downtime" switch is set to YES, downtime hours are calculated automatically and the mechanics see no additional prompts. When clocking off incomplete, the downtime status automatically switches from ACTIVE to LISTED, and downtime hours stop accumulating.

When clocking off complete, the downtime status automatically switches to CLOSED. The downtime hours stop accumulating and the downtime listing is also closed.

  • When the Auto post Active/Listed in the "Downtime" switch is set to NO, a window pops up when mechanics clock off, allowing the downtime status to be changed. When clocking off incomplete, mechanics have the option of leaving the status as is or selecting a new status code. Downtime hours will stop or continue to accumulate according to the downtime status indicated.

When clocking off complete AND the work order remains open, the mechanic will be prompted for the downtime status. At this point, the mechanics should choose the CLOSED downtime status but has the option of selecting another status code as needed.
When clocking off complete AND the work order is closed, the downtime status automatically switches to CLOSED. The downtime hours stop accumulating and the listing is closed.

Fleet Downtime Report

A report is available that provides downtime statistics and transaction detail for the fleet. To print this report, select Reports > Work Orders > Downtime from the RTA main menu (ROW) and specify the report data ranges and options. A report will be generated, showing individual downtime statistics for each vehicle in the specified range. A summary is also provided at the end of the report showing statistics for the entire fleet.