You may have heard the term “fleet management vehicle tracking” and assumed that its sole purpose is to track your fleet and keep tabs on where your vehicles and drivers are.
If so, you assumed wrong.
In the past few years, the telematics industry has evolved into being more than the traditional “dots on a map.”
Today, more and more business owners and fleet managers are reaping the many benefits of implementing fleet management vehicle tracking, often through fleet management software.
Read on to discover the five major ways your fleet can benefit from this technology.
1. Fleet management software monitors driver behavior and safety
Fleet operators are increasingly shifting their focus from vehicles to drivers. How well drivers perform behind the wheel can pay dividends for your operation long term.
Not only can enforcing safe driving habits reduce risks and accident rates, but some insurance providers offer incentives as well.
For instance, when Jack Williams Tire Company started to see an uptick in driver accidents, their insurance company thought seriously about dropping them. But once they implemented a fleet management solution, they began to see driver improvements fleet wide.
2. Fleet management software manages your fuel spend
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, traveling over the speed limit by just 5 mph can increase fuel consumption by nearly 10%.
A fuel management module is a great way to make sure that your drivers aren’t incurring that 10% increase.
Fuel modules bring together key metrics on fuel trends, opportunities for fuel reduction, and unauthorized fuel card use. They let you compare fuel card transactional data versus actual vehicle fuel usage.
You can also receive alerts about excessive fuel purchases and unauthorized uses of fleet credit cards—ultimately resulting in a stronger bottom line for your business.
Directly monitoring fuel isn’t the only way to save money, though.
By implementing a fleet management solution, you can also access real-time reports that monitor the speed, acceleration, and braking of each vehicle. Monitoring these factors also reduces overall fuel usage.
3. Fleet management software extends the life of your fleet
Routine preventive maintenance within your fleet can pay huge dividends by avoiding costly vehicle breakdowns and repairs, ensuring your vehicles operate at peak performance.
Fleet maintenance modules built into fleet management software make it easy to monitor oil changes, inspections, diagnostic alerts, maintenance workflows, registrations, and other routine maintenance. Automatic alerts are sent to you via email or text message, letting you know when a vehicle is due for maintenance.
Extending the life of your fleet is especially helpful for small fleets.
One 2016 study found that fleets with fewer than 100 vehicles keep those vehicles nearly twice as long as large fleets.
Preventive maintenance makes these longer lifespans possible.
4. Fleet management software gives you customized API integrations
There are several fleet management software companies out there that offer business intelligence features. These options have a fully customizable API module that can be added to third-party software, as well as other enterprise business solutions, in real time.
APIs (application program interfaces) allow different programs, or parts of the same software program, to talk to each other. A customized API integration will allow the software you currently have (whether that’s email marketing software, CRM software, or point-of-sale software) to talk to the new program.
The result? All those separate software programs share information.
Instead of multiple sources of data, you’ll have one place you can combine and compare that data. This benefits many different fleet management functions, including data mapping, job scheduling, hours of use data for maintenance, time clock software, and much more.
For instance, you could compare maintenance data (why does truck No. 22 need maintenance more often?) with telematics (the roads truck No. 22 normally takes are full of potholes).
5. Fleet management software makes total fleet compliance easy
Have you heard of the ELD Mandate?
The FMCSA ELD Mandate is:
“A law that requires fleet operators to electronically keep record of a driver’s Record of Duty Status (RODS), which replaces the paper logbook some drivers currently use to record their compliance with Hours of Service (HOS) requirements.”
The mandate went into effect December 2017, and full enforcement began April 1, 2018—including the issuance of out-of-service citations.
The majority of fleet management solutions provide key insights needed to automate, monitor, and manage your compliance needs. To be compliant with the FMCSA ELD Mandate, your electronic logging device should be certified and registered by the FMCSA.
Fleet management software makes ELD compliance considerably easier. When searching for a fleet management vendor, be sure to ask what sort of ELD compliance feature they have. Some vendors’ ELD features even track when your driver is behind the wheel, removing the fear that drivers might forget to log all their hours.
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