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How Automated PCN Management Boosts Rental Business Profits

There are times when vehicle rental clients return a vehicle only to realise later that they received a parking ticket during the time of the rental. In such cases, the onus falls on the vehicle rental businesses to take care of the fines and track the clients to get their dues.

In this blog, we will explore what a PCN is and how you can navigate the issue with proper PCN management.

What is a PCN (Penalty Charge Notice)?

PCN, short for Penalty Charge Notice, are notices that can be issued to a car or any automobile for not following parking restrictions, driving in areas that are prohibited, or not paying a particular charge. Typical reasons to get a penalty charge notice are:

The Difference Between Penalty Charge Notice and Parking Charge Notice:

The major difference between a Penalty Charge Notice and a Parking Charge Notice is that Penalty Charge Notices are issued by statutory authorities like local councils or government agencies, while private companies issue Parking Charge Notices. Penalty Charge Notices are usually associated with traffic or parking law violations on public roads or properties owned by councils. If one doesn't pay the fine, the offender may be subjected to legal consequences.

Parking Charge Notices that are issued by private companies are private parking tickets, and these are issued when one breaches or violates the terms on private land or property, like shopping centres, retail parks, or private car parks.

What is the Significance of a PCN for Vehicle Rental Businesses?

PCNs can affect a vehicle rental business in a lot of ways. Unfortunately, situations like this are far too common for vehicle rental businesses and can cause:

  • Unwarranted expenses that affect the profitability of the vehicle rental business 

  • Administrative burden to track clients instead of focusing on the business 

  • Compliance issues for not paying fines on time 

  • Liability or legal issues due to unresolved fines 

What is the Traditional Process of Handling PCNs?

Here is a simple breakdown of the way vehicle rental companies traditionally handle PCNs:

  • Getting tickets in the mail (post): It’s usually the rental company that gets the PCN through the mail rather than the client who rented the car.

  • Processing the ticket details manually: Typically, the employees are in charge of ticket management, and sorting them based on the type of PCN that has been issued.

  • Locating the clients: The next step includes finding the client who rented the car for the duration and getting in touch with them for the fine. However, the process can be very time-consuming and ineffective.

The Challenges of Manual Handling of PCN Faced By Vehicle Rental Businesses:

  • Intensive manual effort: The employees are usually given the daunting task of sorting through so many PCNs, processing them and locating the clients for reimbursement.

  • Errors and delays: Since the entire process is done manually, there is always a chance of errors in entering data and delays in processing. Such errors or delays can lead to billing discrepancies.

  • Financial loss for the vehicle rental business: When there are late payments or an inability to locate a client, the vehicle rental business usually has to pay out of pocket. If they are unable to resolve the issues, it may even have legal consequences. 

Switching to Automated PCN Management:

Automated Penalty Charge Notice management is a game-changer for rental companies, and here’s how things would look for businesses switching to a more efficient system:

  • Digitization of receipts: Unlike traditional processes where PCNs are received through the mail, shared mobility companies can now receive them digitally in their existing software, making the entire process seamless. 

  • Automatic identification of the clients: Locating clients who rented the vehicle is now easier than ever with advanced algorithms. 

  • Streamlined communication and liability transfer: With automated PCN management, it’s now simple for rental businesses to communicate with PCN issuers regarding fines and liabilities. With timely notifications, it can reduce the chances of any disputes by transferring liability. 

  • Real-time tracking of PCN: An automated PCN management system can now track notices in real-time and check if there are any outstanding fines.

What are the Benefits of Automated PCN Management?

According to Transfer360, automated PCN management can help vehicle rental businesses streamline their operations, reduce time expenditures by 50%, and even cut down on operational costs by 25%.

There are several ways having an automated PCN management system can help a vehicle rental business. Here are reasons to consider it:

  • Reduced workload for employees: Automation of PCN management takes a lot of responsibility off the shoulders of employees by cutting down the need for human intervention. 

  • Less chances of error: By automating the entire process, the system would save the rental business a lot of time, reduce any chances of error, and manage the penalty charges more accurately. 

  • Operational cost reduction: Automation of PCN management would also require no additional resources or manual labour. This means more efficiency, and lower operational costs for vehicle rental businesses while they stay compliant with the regulations.

  • Better customer experience: With automated systems, shared mobility businesses can expect faster resolution of PCNs, which translates to better communication and a more positive customer experience.

  • Transparency and audit trails: Businesses with automation of PCN management are pretty transparent about their processes and can offer a comprehensive audit trail of their actions within the system. 

  • Legal compliance: Automated PCN management can also help vehicle rental companies make sure that they are compliant with the laws and regulations associated with parking fines. 

  • Competitive edge: Compared to vehicle rental companies that handle PCNs manually, automated PCN management would give vehicle rental businesses an advantage over others in the market, as consumers are typically drawn more towards hassle-free solutions. 

The Partnership of Coastr with Transfer360:

Specializing in automated liability transfer, Transfer360 aims to streamline the process of transferring fines and ticket management on behalf of automobile rental businesses. The innovation revolutionizes the way shared mobility businesses have been handling PCNs.

"The existing process for lease and fleet operators to receive, manage and respond to tickets issued to their vehicles is antiquated and cumbersome. Transfer360 digitises and automates this process and we've had fantastic results with some of the largest fleet companies across the UK. Our partnership with Coastr takes this to the next level, allowing any operator who uses Coastr software to have immediate access to our system and streamline the ticket handling process. We're looking forward to the roll out across Coastr users and seeing the benefits unfold."

Richard Williams, CEO of Transfer360

By integrating Transfer360’s technology, Coastr allows car rental companies to track and manage any traffic-related fines. The tailored services can help in:

  • Automating fine resolution: This would not only help achieve faster results by 50%, but it would also save a lot of time for the employees.

  • Administrative cost reduction: With a streamlined process, businesses can expect a reduction in administrative costs of 25%. Say bye-bye to manual processes and exhaustive paperwork. 

  • Reduce resolution time: An automated system would also slash resolution time for automobile rental businesses from an average of 5 minutes to zero minutes. 

Switching To Automated PCN Management:

With the increasing frequency of traffic fines, tracking, resolving and managing these penalties can be unnerving and cumbersome for fleet management businesses. However, now that there are better alternatives to manual parking charge notice handling out there, it’s best for vehicle rental businesses to opt for options that guarantee efficiency in parking charge notice management.

With digitization and proper management of PCNs, vehicle rental management businesses do not have to worry about financial losses, administrative burdens or compliance issues any longer.


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