Over the decade or so, extensive use of the Global Positioning System has revolutionized travel. Other than just directions, many additional features, such as suggestions and assessment of traffic situations, have been added.
But one industry has been at the receiving end of magnanimous benefits from the advent of the GPS, and that is fleet management. Often overlooked by consumers, fleet management forms an integral part of the supply chain, and the field commands considerable attention by researchers and developers, for it offers room for significant improvement in efficiency and cost management, and increasing profits.
GPS systems are a must in the fleet management business, in some places, even mandated by law. As a part of telematics solutions, GPS has evolved into more than just a navigation system. It monitors, assesses, and optimizes.
According to a study, about 66% of managers feel that much more can be done to reduce fuel costs and consumption. The GPS telematics system plays a pivotal role in that, and much more, and you can learn more about GPS on Samsara.com and why you should choose it for your organization.
The Right System For You
Choosing the right GPS tracking system is essential if you want to optimize costs pertinent to fleet management. One of the key factors taken into account, other than the nature of your business and the data you need to track is the size of your fleet.
Telematics solutions firms offer a wide array of GPS tracking devices, with varying features and prices. There’s a huge difference in the technology and hardware used for managing a fleet of say 5 motorcycles for pizza delivery, and an armada of 30 or so long haul trucks.
We’d like to highlight the point that a GPS tracking system, be it a small fleet or a large one, can and does make a difference in management apropos of efficiency, costs, and, ultimately, profits.
Here, we list out some benefits that accrue to fleet managers irrespective of the number of vehicles under their purview:
- Assistance in Theft Recovery
GPS tracking systems drastically reduce the probability that a stolen fleet vehicle will end up stripped and sold part-by-part to various local dealers in the black market. Seemingly advanced first world nations like the United Kingdom and the United States of America reported a 56% percent increase in vehicle theft (highest in four years), and around 4 billion dollars worth of loss via thefts, respectively.
GPS tracking systems are essential for tracing and locating stolen vehicles, especially relatively inexpensive small fleet vehicles like bikes, for they are easy targets.
- Route Optimization for Saving Time, Fuel and Maintenance Costs
Route optimization is perhaps the main task that GPS fleet management systems are known for. This process involves the use of AI for calibrating the topography and coming up with the most cost-efficient route for the task.
Systems these days are advanced enough to analyze historical route data, factor in impediments which may cause delays, like road construction, poor road quality or high density of traffic, and let the driver know when to switch routes, even mid-way.
Incidental to the savings on fuel and time is the money that fleet managers save in the total cost of ownership. This includes repairs and maintenance of fleet vehicles, which can be a considerably expensive affair for anyone. Efficient route optimization saves vehicles from undue duress.
Diagnostic trouble code monitoring and personalized maintenance schedules, which call for minor routinely checks such as tire air pressure save on huge bills which can be incurred if vehicles are neglected.
- Improvement in Driving Quality and Safety
Aggressive fleet drivers are not only a danger to other drivers and pedestrians but are also an albatross around the neck of fleet managers. They cause damage to both public and company property, which can lead to lawsuits and settlements worth much more than the damage.
Drivers, being aware of a vehicle tracking device, are cautious and deliberate in their practice. Tracking systems such as fleet tracking apps not only tell the route, but also vital information such as the average speed, braking intensity, and revving. Read more about how to keep your fleet connected with a fleet tracking app here.
- Record of Data for Future References
The record of data via a tracking device, such as the routes and time, can serve as reference points when the need arrives. This is particularly helpful when disputes between employees and mangers arise over payment. These records are extremely useful and can be used in the court of law.
Public claims can also be settled via these records in a similar manner.
- More Work and More Pay
Incidental to route optimization is the ability of the GPS tracking system to save time and allow a particular driver to take charge of more deliveries, and therefore increase their pay. This improves efficiency and employee satisfaction, both, at one go.
- Additional Data View
This one is mostly for large fleet operators and those who deliver shipments of varying nature. Some GPS systems go further than just showing the vehicle name.
If needed, fleet managers can view other attributes of the vehicle, such as the driver’s name, the model of the vehicle, or even the material that the vehicle is carrying. This can be used to keep track of any vehicle carrying valuable materials or goods of sensitive nature.
- Access Permission
Again useful for large organizations, GPS tracking software can be programmed to include information on a need-to-know basis. Access permission checkpoints can be set up at multiple levels and locations and can hide sensitive data like performance reviews from the eyes of those being reviewed.
To summarize all that’s said above: be it big or small, your fleet needs an integrated GPS tracking system. In the long haul, it saves up on fuel, time, and overhead charges such as maintenance help review and improve driver efficiency and reduce incidents of delinquency and can help maintain an uncluttered driver time-table, which leads to efficient deliveries, happy customers, and a good brand name.