After a two-auction pilot test during the summer of 2002, GSA Fleet spent the past winter implementing the AutoIMS Web-enabled inventory tracking system. The purpose was to develop greater inventory visibility and tracking capabilities, along with streamlined sales processes and improved data analysis.

GSA Fleet provides fleet management services to participating federal agencies. It uses a network of fleet management centers located within each of GSA Fleet’s nine regions. The GSA fleet consists of more than 190,000 vehicles, more than 90 percent of which are sedans or light trucks. GSA remarkets 35,000-40,000 of those vehicles annually, through a network of 50 auctions that hold open-to-the-public sales. Many of GSA’s sales reps manage sales at more than one auction house, which keeps them on the road continually. According to Lander Allin, national remarketing director for GSA, verbal instructions and authorizations would get lost or misinterpreted, phone calls would be missed, and faxes buried on desks. “With this system,” Allin says, “our sales reps can log on from anywhere and see condition reports and authorize repairs online. It’s faster for them, and it gives us a good record of exactly what repairs we authorized.”

Jason Reese, a remarketing specialist in GSA Fleet’s North East region, says that with AutoIMS, GSA enters the VIN, make, and model information into the system, and then assigns the vehicle electronically for pick-up or drop-off. The accepting auction receives electronic notification and the information is automatically transferred.

“As a side benefit,” Reese says, “we’re finding that vehicles are getting picked up faster and put into sale inventory faster.” Next year, he says, he wants to funnel more repairs through his auctions “to cut costs and move our vehicles to sale more quickly.”