ARA RentalTech highlights the impact of technology on rental

Oct. 11, 2020

The first ARA RentalTech conference drew more than 250 registrants who attended a variety of sessions across the four-day webinar series that started on Monday, Oct. 5.

Initially intended to be an in-person conference, the American Rental Association (ARA), turned RentalTech 2020 into a series of 17 sessions featuring more than 70 leaders from the equipment and event rental industry using today’s technology to educate and inform those participating about technology advances, deployments and more.

ARA RentalTech focused on three areas including how technology is impacting and improving rental operations, how technology is impacting customer experiences and virtual/remote working solutions. The event was designed to support its members in understanding the emerging and potentially disrupting technologies, assist in collaboration between rental companies and technology providers, and to increase knowledge of the current and future technology solutions.

Topics covered in the webinars included everything from RFID and QR codes to telematics, paperless operations, digital marketing, online marketplaces, cybersecurity, change management and more.

Among the highlights included a keynote presentation from Dale Asplund, executive vice president and chief operating officer, United Rentals, Stamford, Conn., who outlined how technology can help meet customer needs, improve operations and provide a scalable infrastructure from the perspective of the world’s largest equipment rental company.

In addition, Joel Honeyman, vice president, global innovations, Doosan Bobcat, West Fargo, N.D., shared how technology is shaping the construction industry as it becomes less expensive, how advances like 5G can have a significant impact on using technology and Bobcat’s technology strategy as part of the opening session.

On Oct. 7, ARA RentalTech 2020 also featured “technology meets magic,” an entertainment session presented by Digital Deception. The duo has performed for clients such as Google, IBM, Procter & Gamble and Sprint with their interactive digital magic.

“One of the pillars of ARA’s Strategic Plan is technology and helping ARA members effectively utilize technology to increase operational performance. ARA RentalTech 2020 is one of the ways we are supporting members so that they can understand and adapt to present and future technology,” says Tony Conant, ARA’s CEO.

“I was very impressed with the presenters. There is no place else you can get rental-specific technology content like this. The sessions covered such a broad spectrum of tech that there was something for everyone. I am also very encouraged by the attendee metrics. We know October is a very busy month so we appreciate the time and attention from so many of our members. The adoption of technology is key to rental being recognized as the optimal business model for the future,” Conant says.

“ARA RentalTech provided members more knowledge about the current and coming technological solutions in the rental industry,” says Tom Doyle, ARA vice president of program development.

“I was so impressed by the exceptional job done by our presenters, all accomplished in sessions under 50 minutes, allowing members to optimize their time. I want to thank the ARA board, sponsors and all of the presenters who made our inaugural event a success,” Doyle says.

The event was sponsored by Alert Management Systems, Point of Rental Software, SmartEquip and ARA Insurance.

Those who registered for the event also have access to the ARA RentalTech 2020 archive through Oct. 31.

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