Fleet telematics is a technology used to procure essential information relating to an individual vehicle, or primarily a vehicle fleet. A fleet telematics system gives you vital insights into your vehicles. It shows you with data on vehicle location, engine diagnostics, as-well-as driver behavior.
Challenges Faced By Small Fleets
In a recent study conducted by Bibby Financial Services, about 68% of smaller carriers mentioned increasing costs as their biggest challenge (Source).
While insurance remained top expenditure for many businesses, fuel and vehicle maintenance tended to be the second and third greatest costs.
Small fleet businesses need to battle the growing competition by investing in technology. Many such businesses have reinforced their technology investment plans for the next couple of years.
About 33% of the businesses desire to invest in predictive maintenance, 29% in fleet management, and 30% in route optimization (Source).
This is where a decent Telematics solution can transform the way you do business and help you stay afloat with the ever-increasing complex business needs.
How Telematics Can Assist The Small Fleet Managers
When it comes down to fuel savings or streamlined maintenance, the following are the ways through which a telematics solution can help facilitate fleet management and improve operating efficiency –
1. Monitor fuel economy and idling
While tracking fuel costs accurately, small fleets often encounter copious challenges, despite them being in business for a long period.
Mercurial fluctuations in oil prices, duties, and other taxes can complicate the situation even further. However, with the correct data and best practices, the task is not so tedious to handle.
Monitoring fuel usage, measuring data, educating your drivers, and performing it periodically can help you be economical in terms of fuel.
Here are a couple of steps to guide you on how to enhance your fuel economy –
- Integrate your fuel cards with the fleet management software and running reports to help you review total fuel spend per vehicle, including all fill-up locations.
- Leverage reliable fuel transaction information to help you track miles per gallon.
- Extrapolate causes of elevated fuel consumption that might include unauthorized fill-ups, to eliminate fuel slippage.
- Enforce fuel-saving habits and reduce fuel-wasting behaviors and fuel fraud to mitigate overall fuel costs.
- Eliminate idling by keeping an eye on vehicle idle times, inoperative vehicles, and engine status.
With data gathered from a GPS tracking solution, you can tackle a crucial step, that is, reviewing your fuel consumption frequently and with precision.
This would help you understand a variety of factors that affect your fleet’s fuel costs so that you could implement an ongoing fuel management program to boost fuel efficiency.
2. Smart Maintenance
When dealing with small fleets, pulling even one truck out of rotation can end in a disaster that would cost you a heavy loss of productivity, affecting your customers and your bottom line.
When it comes to maintaining the health of all fleet vehicles, preventive fleet maintenance is paramount.
Telematics, as a fleet management solution, can streamline maintenance processes when it comes to routine updates, such as tire rotations, oil changes, or bigger fixes.
This decreases expenses and keeps all vehicles in a safe operating condition.
Managers of small fleets also need to keep track of maintenance schedules. Telematics can take away this extra pressure and help them emphasize the core activities of the business.
The software generates vehicle maintenance alerts, improves preventative maintenance program accuracy, and controls costs.
Some of the other maintenance benefits that come along with fleet tracking technology are as follows-
- Engine diagnostics: Monitor battery voltage, coolant temperature, intake valve issues, powertrain malfunctions, oxygen sensor problems, and other vital parts,
- Engine hour tracking and driver behavior data: Reports on engine-hour tracking and driver behavior data can provide insights as to what accelerates vehicle wear and tear and monitor the driver.
- Service records tracking: Receive reminders for routine maintenance and automatically review vehicle service as-well-as completion dates. This offers greater control in scheduling and data-driven decisions.
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3. Enhanced Driver and Vehicle Safety
Safety must always be a priority for small fleet managers and drivers because your employees are a vital asset to you, and you must intend to keep them safe and sound.
Telematics aids in improving driver safety by monitoring the location and pace of every fleet vehicle.
The technology also renders real-time alerts if speeding incidents occur or any other risky driving behaviors that include hard braking or impulsive acceleration.
Managers can set alerts under unsafe driving conditions, including rain or snow, or even set a lower-limit speeding alert if vehicle wipers are active.
Telematics also supports drivers in risky situations by leveraging live location tracking to facilitate quicker and efficient emergency response.
When used in conjunction with integrated video, fleet managers can view video clips of ruthless driving events within minutes.
These clips can then be used to coach drivers towards improving safety, while also rewarding those drivers who have already been performing well.
4. Smart Dispatching and Improved Utilization
For small fleets, if a vehicle can be dispatched flexibly, and all vehicles and assets can be routed accurately, the ability to rein in expenses also increases.
Telematics enables small fleet managers and operators to swiftly locate the nearest worker with the correct skills and vehicle for a specific job, mitigating per-mile costs.
It also notifies managers and drivers of any traffic congestion or bad incoming weather, providing alternate routes to steer clear of any potential delays.
Telematics data also helps you identify which equipment or vehicles could help you get a better ROI, and what all needs to be sold or relocated.
Telematics is an investment that needs to be made after thorough research, and hence, you need adequate knowledge before putting up your hard-earned money.
You can read full article here on Samsara’s website to understand the entire modus operandi of telematics.
A telematics system helps you to identify vehicle problems the moment they arise. It also schedules planned maintenance more efficiently and improves the communication process for you and your team.
Telematics also provide essential data regarding engine performance, vehicle health as-well-as the overall cost of ownership.
Not only does it help you save money by reducing unanticipated vehicle maintenance and repair costs, but it also provides you with more effective route planning.
You can also work on fuel consumption and track down the number of road accidents in your fleet.