Cramo IoT

The smart “self-returning” rental tool

Digitalization is a clear trend in the construction industry. At Cramo we are shaping the future of rental with a clear strategy to stretch and scale up business models as well as establishing new and game-changing offerings.

In order to transform our business, we have set up a Digital Transformation Team with the purpose of providing the best development environment possible. The team is led by Tomi Sundberg, New Business Development Director since late 2016.

The Internet of Things and the technology available today enable us to make our rental fleet more supportive of our customers’ needs. One example is tagging rental machinery to make tracking easy using an online device at work sites.

“In the future, our customers will mostly use digital solutions to rent equipment. We believe this will speed up our service tremendously. If we can simplify our customers’ workflow, it will benefit both us and them,” says Martin Holmgren, Senior Vice President of Fleet Management at Cramo.

The project

In mid-2016 a project was launched by Cramo in partnership with Ericsson and Husqvarna. The aim of the project was to develop the idea of “self-returning” tools. “We have 230,000 units, and digital monitoring helps us perform faster maintenance, giving us better time utilization and allowing us to provide the equipment to customers faster.”

Power cutters are frequently rented tools, and every time they are returned they must be inspected and serviced before they can be rented out again. Some inspection points require a lot of time from a mechanic, which makes the return process rather labour-intensive. In addition, there is a risk of over-servicing the machines, that is, of mechanics replacing parts that are not yet due for replacement.

If the machine could automatically send its status to a central system at the time of return and then have service based on its specific need, a lot of time could be saved.

The overall aim of this project was to enable automated machine returns and to reduce the need for manual inspection of a machine’s status as much as possible.

Ericsson has developed and provided the functionality to connect the power cutter to Ericsson’s IoT platform where data is collected and analyzed, and a recommendation is provided to Cramo. Read the Ericsson blog post here.

The testing was successful and proved that the concept works. We will keep developing this as well as other ideas and projects on a continuous basis.

For more information about our rental products, visit our online rental portal Cramo eCRent.