For short line holding company OmniTRAX, managing car-hire payables for its 17 properties is its third-largest operating expense, especially since each of its railroads has unique agreements with specific operating criteria. Data accuracy is paramount.
OmniTRAX last year outsourced its car-hire payables, rather than hire a replacement for its departing internal director of car-hire. The company selected RMI and its Car Hire Managed Services (CHMS). “We were already using the car-hire data from RMI, so outsourcing to was a natural next step,” says OmniTRAX Controller Scott Bell. OmniTRAX was also able to redeploy the backup resource and now no longer needs to spend 50% of their time on the car hire effort. The switch to RMI’s service took two weeks, including integration with OmniTRAX’s cash settlement system.
CHMS include calculations of haulage payments and claim penalties via audit of OmniTRAX’s car-hire settlements; identification of TOL and Rule 15 discrepancies; a review of LCS differences; and development of contract rates. RMI says “improved accuracy, reduced payments and counter reclaims, and better service have resulted. RMI also provides analysis of such key performance indicators as changes in car-hire and terminal velocity; forecasted car-hire expenses; carload volumes; and equipment utilization.
“We’ve seen a gradual increase in equipment utilization and reduced dwell times,” says Bell. “Equally important is the improved customer service that results from higher data consistency and the confidence we have in using the car-hire data for analysis and decision making,” concluded Bell.