If you’re the owner-operator of a company that revolves around a fleet of commercial vehicles, you may be wondering what management options are out there for you to take advantage of. When playing a high-intensity car racing game, for example, you may not have time to anticipate each and every obstacle – whether locational, weather-based or vehicular – that may affect your goal of reaching your target destination. In a game, you may not mind facing some unexpected hurdles along the way, as they could potentially add to the entertainment. Reality, however, is a different matter altogether.
When attempting to efficiently run a business, these factors are much better anticipated, monitored and tracked in order to avoid any unwanted delays. Finding a structured management system to aid not only you but also your drivers/employees should, therefore, be a top priority. While there may be other viable options available, using fleet management tracking technology is considered to offer users several benefits. This type of tracking is also important in order to successfully grow and manage your company.
What is fleet management?
In order to better understand why fleet management tracking is important, it’s vital to firstly comprehend what ‘fleet management’ is. In simple terms, fleet management is the process of organising and overseeing the activities and functions of your fleet of commercial vehicles, as well as other assets such as work equipment.
This form of management is considered important as it can help boost employee productivity, ensure business functions run smoothly, confirm legislation compliance, and also avoid/mitigate risks while focussing on improving driver’s safety.
It’s also key to note that while you may picture dozens of white vans perfectly lined up ready to begin their work day, fleets can be made up of all sorts of vehicles.
Business vehicles may include:
- Specialist vehicles.
What is fleet management tracking software?
When aiming to achieve the aforementioned management goals, many companies recommend using some kind of tracking software. These technologies aid you in monitoring several features of your fleet, such as their location. Vehicle location tracking isn’t, however, the only component offered. Reporting data on fuel consumption as well as driver’s behaviour, for example, may be included as well as other features and applications whose sole purpose is to make your life easier.
The tracking software works through GPS signalling and your chosen method of data transmission – depending upon your location, strength of signal, risk of electromagnetic interference – and collects performance metrics associated with your vehicle in order to improve operations.
Why is it important?
Fleet management tracking is important for several reasons, some of which have been touched on above. Owner-operators and managers won’t generally adopt new technologies if they fail to offer the company significant benefits – in regards to finances, customer satisfaction, employee experience and overall operational efficiency. Fleet management solutions shouldn’t, therefore, be overlooked, as according to Markets and Markets, the fleet management industry is expected to grow to USD$34 billion by 2025 – which should theoretically only increase the technology’s capabilities.
If not convinced yet, consider the following benefits and reasons it’s important to consider:
Through the use of internet-based tracking solutions, managers are able to monitor (in near real time) any unfortunate road incidents or mishaps that may occur, and act accordingly to rectify them in a timely manner. Ensuring that the driver’s safety isn’t compromised alongside customer satisfaction – if deliveries were to be delayed or goods damaged – are generally high company priorities. Vehicle tracking is, therefore, an important factor for businesses managing large vehicle fleets and strict deadlines.
Road obstacles aren’t, however, the only form of threat posed to fleet companies. Driver behaviour on the road, as well as the conditions of the vehicles themselves may also be key areas of concern – areas which can also be managed through tracking. If, for example, certain drivers are caught leaving their vehicles idle for too long (wasting fuel) or operating their vehicles in an unsafe manner, managers may choose to implement further training programs and/or other courses of action to avoid these problems. Performance implications may include jarring braking, fast turns and unsafe speeds – all of which can be tracked with fleet management technologies, and then rectified.
The same can be said about the functionality of the vehicle, which will be further explored below.
The ability to track fuel consumption, mileage and other key vehicle functions, allows users to determine cost-saving solutions if maintenance and/or fuel requirements aren’t being met and ultimately wasting company revenue.
Enhanced customer satisfaction
Customers will also be able to track things from their side of the operation more easily. Bookings, reminders and status updates are all included, which many will vouch for over cut-off phone calls and misplaced email communications in this day and age. The smoother the communications, the more likely you are to see an increase in customer satisfaction.
Confirming that your employees are all properly certified is an important step that shouldn’t be overlooked. If failing to legally comply, they, as well as your business, could face severe consequences. Tracking software can help with this, and can therefore help you to manage a safer fleet.
This can be achieved through the use of the following features:
- Certification collection and maintenance
- Discrepancy warnings
- Drivers licence checks.
Fleet tracking software enables users to undergo the following time-saving processes:
- Map out the most effective routes in order to avoid traffic jams.
- Easily communicate with drivers and deliver important and/or altered instructions.
- Arrange ordering, delivery and payment processes in one place (cut down on administrative task time).
- Track working hours and productivity.
Management tracking also allows for a wide and clear view of company KPIs and budgeting. Keeping on top of such tasks can be overwhelming, however, with the help of this advanced software, reviewing your progress as well as achieving target goals should be much simpler.
Fleet management tracking is important for the purpose of optimizing workplace productivity, safety and compliance. It’s not, however, only the employers and employees who may benefit from the applications offered, but also those receiving services from the latter. Enhanced reporting capabilities and the promotion of cost-effective, time-saving strategies are a few of the perks offered by tracking software.