Ranger’s New PatrolWorks with LPR Private Property Enforcement (PPE) – Reimagined

Q&A with a potential customer … 

Q.  Reimagined?  Really?  Sounds like hype

A.  Ranger’s innovative solution – Patrolworks with LPR (PWLPRTM) – moves Private Property Enforcement (PPE) out of the shadows to a higher standard of professionalism for the industry, setting new expectations for transparency, documentation, and customer service.  

Q. Transparency? I thought PPE was all about tag and tow?

A. Ranger’s solution provides an integrated “closed-loop” flow of information with notifications and up-to-date information for Property Managers and Permit Holders, who each have an online, self-service portal designed to meet their differing needs.  Permit Holders know when their vehicle has been found to be in violation of parking polices.  Property Managers know the status of permits, violations, and relocations by lot.

Q. Is documentation that big a deal – particularly if you have possession of the vehicle?

A. As all towers know, the interaction with customers changes significantly when the conversation turns to: “let’s look at the pictures”.  With PWLPRTM there are time-stamped pictures from the License Plate Recognition (LPR) cameras AND also from Ranger’s Mobile app: Co-Pilot.  All of the pictures are available to you (the Parking Management Company) AND to Property Managers AND to Permit Holders – “blowing all the fog off the water”.   “Story time” is over.  All parties have the same facts. 

Q. What does this have to do with customer service improvements?

A. In addition to the dramatic improvement in communication, the most significant new feature is in the integrated capability for TICKETING!  The initial reaction is typically that Property Managers will never agree to it.  In fact, Property Managers are the greatest beneficiary!  They like tagging (costly) and are generally resistant to impounding (the revenue source for those tagging).  Ticketing is a “kinder, gentler” approach to enforcement.  Permit Holders get the message (a ticket).  Property Managers get less grief.  And you release fewer vehicles at no charge.


Q. But Permit Holders won’t pay the tickets

A. Would that be before or after their vehicle is relocated for non-payment?

Q. But impounding is my “bread and butter”.  I can’t risk any revenue from towing

A. Most in the industry with some form of tagging or patrolling activity are already actively managing their tows per lot – for consistent month-to-month revenue and to minimize “blowback” to Property Managers.  Ticketing preserves immediate “safety-related tows” (blocking the fireplug).  However, relocations for other violations can center on “repeat offenders”.  For example, first “occurrence” of a violation (e.g., expired permit) results in a ticket of $10.  Second occurrence triggers a ticket for $25.  Third occurrence results in relocation – and the Property Manager has agreed upfront to the design and knows how to respond to complaints. 

Q. Nice in theory, but we are not allowed to patrol and then tow

A. OK – but can you redesign your business to the regulatory environment?  PWLPRTM works in multiple models – e.g., your towing company could be structured to provide:

• Program Management and All Internal Execution – From policy design, to permitting, to patrolling, to ticketing, through towing and impound lot management, or

• Program Management with Outsourced Patrolling – Responsibility for overall program design/delivery and impounding – using a third party with signatory authority for patrolling. 

• Program Management with Outsourced Relocation:  Responsibility for overall program design/delivery, including the patrolling service, but with outsourcing of impounding to third parties who respond when dispatched

Q. So how do I convince Property Managers that this is a better mousetrap?

A. Change is always difficult, so start with those Property Managers and their Regional Managers with whom you have established a strong relationship.  The benefits for them are compelling:

• Less hassle – parking issues are managed by you; Permit Holders have online self-service

• Lot capacity is better preserved for permit holders

• The image of the property is better maintained to meet the expected standards

• More time is available for higher priority tasks – e.g., sales & marketing, capital projects

• More income from what is often an untapped revenue source – parking assets

Q. But many of my properties are reluctant to charge for parking

A. Some may never convert.  However, consumers are very familiar with paid parking.  While the “past” has been commercial, downtown, and university lots, the trend is encompassing residential.  An online search would uncover at least ten companies (with incomplete offerings) that are managing permits and collecting fees on behalf of apartment complexes and HOAs.  You could provide this service to your customers.  Even reticent property managers need an approach to allocate carports and garage space, and most would be attracted to an opportunity to better manage guest parking capacity while collecting a fee.

Q. Your solution is dubbed PWLPRTM, but you haven’t said much about LPR 

A. Right.  Most of the discussion has been on the benefits for Property Managers and Permit Holders.  The LPR capability changes the game for you!  Today, most PPE operations are responding to a request or walking lots – manually looking for expired permits.  Some go with a mobile app to create and check tags.  Forget the hangtags, and parking permit labels – GO STICKERLESS!   PWLPRTM makes the vehicle license plate the permit.  Mobile LPR cameras mounted on a patrol vehicle read the plate.  Ranger processes the LP “detection” through its Rules Engine to identify violations and whether to ticket or tow.  The LPR system provides a SAFER approach to patrolling, reduces labor, and enables easy scaling for increased volume – i.e., more lots with the same crew 

Q. Does the Ranger mobile app for patrolling then become obsolete?

A. Just the opposite.  We renamed it “Co-Pilot” to reinforce the new and expanded role.  The app continues to be the tool for entering non-permit related violations – such as permit holders with flat tires or blocking traffic.  The mobile app reads the plate (vs. LP entry), the spotter enters the violation, which then goes through the same Rules Engine to determine wait times, ticketing vs. towing, and whether approvals are required.  

Q. Sorry, the app still sounds “old school”, much like the “other guys” – is that all there is?

A. Absolutely not!  Two NEW, high value capabilities have been added to the design. 

• First, Co-Pilot is fully integrated into the PWLPRTM process.  If an LPR detection results in a Violation where the vehicle is subject to relocation (based on the Rules) – the Violation appears on the Co-Pilot app as “Waiting” – ready to tow.  The outside LPR detection becomes actionable inside the vehicle for the Spotter/Driver … and/or for Dispatch…. 

The relocation opportunity also appears on the Dispatch Board.  Trucks, that are typically pre-positioned based on the spotter’s route, can be immediately dispatched to pick-up “Waiting” vehicles (leveraging the geo-coordinates of the Violation).

The second capability is for adding “due diligence” to the record of the Violation. The spotter can use the Co-Pilot app to take as many additional pictures as are needed to fully document the Violation and surrounding conditions – click, click, click.  Ranger does the matching to the LPR violation record, and again, the pictures become available to all interested parties. 

Q. So you have conveniently avoided talking about cost

A. Guilty, but of course it is complicated. The camera systems are impressive (night and day) but are not inexpensive.  Plan on $20,000 for a two-camera system (the cost of one spotter for six months with no added revenue?).  There are one-time fees for configuration of the software (depends on the number of properties).  Importantly, there is a negotiated partnership agreement – e.g., covering permit registration and processing fees for permit purchases, sharing of ticketing revenues, and a nominal admit fee for the software needed to manage the impound lot. 

Q. Seems kinda vague

A. Guilty again.  Ranger’s business model is to work with one, and only one, partner per metro market.  We are seeking a win-win business arrangement that enables our partner to be wildly successful, and for Ranger to participate in that success.

Q. It sounds intriguing – how would I get started?

A. First talk to your customers and gauge their interest.  You will likely be pleasantly surprised by their enthusiasm.  Then talk to Ranger and let’s arrange for an in-field demo. 

Q. What should be my “take-aways”?

A. The benefits for Property Managers:

Preserve capacity for permit holders 

Eliminate hassles – for permitting, vehicle registration changes, and frivolous complaints

Reinforce property image standards

Generate added revenue from permits, including guest permits

A. An opportunity for you to win and prosper in your market with the exclusive deployment of Ranger’s innovative solution — that will redefine the future of private property enforcement

 While this article has focused on private property enforcement,  Ranger delivers a complete Tow Management Solution (TMS) – from call-taking (including DD connections with motor clubs), to GPS tracking/mapping, to storage lot management (with QR code facilitated physical inventory management) to accounting (with multiple options for linking pricing and payments to QB) – that includes unique capabilities for heavy hauling, messaging to customers (for their peace of mind – safety, responsiveness), and for direct marketing to local market customers (by-passing those in the middle). 

Launched in 2004, Ranger continues to be owned and operated by the founder, working with a talented team that is personally committed to serving our highly valued customers. 

PWLPRTM – is more advanced technology for superior performance.  If you are looking to grow your top and bottom lines, give us a call — 440.498.1495 — and let us put Ranger Service Solutions Technology to work for you!

For more information https://info.rangersst.com/or 440.498.1495.