Why Do You Need A GPS Tracking System For Fleet Management?
Fleet management systems have helped several companies turn around their fates and get the best out of their team.
It is wrong to picture GPS tracking software as a mode of surveillance because it does not work that way; the device and its accompanying software provide fleet managers with essential team management tools and vital information to help them make informed decisions.
Such systems help eliminate unwanted interruptions for the drivers (i.e. you won’t have to ask them for updates constantly) and streamline the rest of the process. Overall, the results are an increased work efficiency and thus improved business.
Before we go on exploring the introduction of a GPS tracking system to your drivers, let’s first understand how fleet management can help you in the first place:
Live Location Tracking
We first start with the basic function of a GPS tracking system which is sharing the live location updates for fleet vehicles and drivers. Your employees may not be all too thrilled about being monitored, but this real-time location tracking feature works well for them too.
This way, you won’t have to bug them for location updates on your end constantly. This is all the more welcoming when one considers how risky it is to be engaged on the telephone while driving. Moreover, in this fast-paced business world, you’ll find this live location display much more suitable than having to wait for an update.
This also means that you’ll be in a much better position to assign orders and re-route your drivers on an emergency basis.
Plus, you’ll have a much better idea of work progress as well.
Another important area where the introduction of a GPS tracking system becomes relevant is when you need to pick the ideal route for your order. Not every course is the same, some may be too long, but perhaps the shortest one may be jam-packed with traffic.
Of course, so many variables matter when picking an ideal or optimum route; it is impossible for a driver or even a manager sitting remotely (when not assisted by a fleet management system) to make an informed decision. Intuition and experience, though valuable in their own space, may not always give you the results you need.
This is where the complex algorithm of a fleet tracking system becomes relevant. GPS tracking systems compare various possible route options based on distance, driving experience, traffic density, weather, and other factors to present the most suitable one in your case.
This way, you’ll travel the route best suited in your case; your employees will thus get more done every day, and you’ll have more control over your business progress than otherwise.
Improving Drivers’ On-Road Behaviors
Driving for long hours can take its toll on the peace of mind of your employees. Drivers are, after all, human and thus are bound by human limitations in both energy and focus. But even an instant’s inattention can yield catastrophic results.
News of commercial vehicle accidents are very common, all for a good reason. The tight schedules and deadlines can force drivers to drive unsafely and thus increase the risk of a crash. The behavior of your drivers on the road will reflect on your company policy too.
Thus if they get involved in a car accident, you’ll find yourself dragged in a lawsuit as well and thus can drain thousands of dollars from your business. You’d be much better off spending this money on improving your business, getting more perks for your employees, and so on.
Of course, all is not lost. You can do your best to avoid such disasters, and getting a GPS tracking system onboard is step one. Fleet management software sends constant updates about your vehicles’ speeds, acceleration, braking patterns, and other indications of unsafe driving.
The rest is up to you to stop such things in their tracks before they can become a bigger menace.
Enhancing Cost Effectiveness & Increasing Profits
Small businesses and large enterprises both constantly seek ways to lower their operational costs. The more money you can save through better fuel economy and by elevating team productivity, the more you’ll have to spend on making your business better.
A fleet management solution can help you do precisely that and much more. Through better transparency and a plethora of resources to help you execute your orders much better than otherwise, you’ll be able to get the best of every day.
GPS tracking systems will also help your drivers in this way; as your company becomes more profitable, you’ll be able to provide them more perks and employment benefits. Plus, a fast-paced environment will help them blossom their skills to the fullest.
With such a decent return on investment, no wonder why GPS tracking systems have become all the hype nowadays.
Getting Rid Of Manual Logs
GPS tracking also comes to the rescue of fleet managers on the data entry end.
Don’t you just hate going through daily logs, not knowing how much of it is accurate and how much is erroneous? No, you don’t have to question the loyalty and conviction of your employees. It is very much possible that they committed an error with their log entries without knowing so.
After all, drivers are humans and thus capable of making mistakes.
Whatever the case, you can’t rely completely on the accuracy of manual logs, and besides, they don’t even reveal the whole story. You can instead use fleet management software that offers detailed stats and other input about daily progress.
Not only will you learn of the miles traveled, average speed, anomalies in driving behavior, but much more than that, including location history and idling instances too.
Thus the need for manual logs will be eliminated, and you’ll also have a much better idea about the state of affairs.
Ensuring Safety For Both Drivers & Assets
You also need to be on the look for your drivers.
Not only do telematics systems help you keep an eye on the progress constantly, but you can also ensure the safety of your employees through such systems.
Fleet tracking solutions can help you here in two ways.
First, it will make you completely aware of the location of your vehicles and any upcoming maintenance issues. Thus you’ll be able to warn your drivers ahead of time before things become problematic and will also be able to help them if things do take a bad turn.
The second important way in which telematics contributes to safety is through theft protection and deterrence. Since your vehicles will display an indication of being tracked, it is highly unlikely that any crook would risk stealing your ride.
Thus you can put your mind at ease when it comes to the safety of your drivers and your assets because GPS fleet tracking has your back in both areas.
Better Productivity & Customer Satisfaction
Lastly, enhanced monitoring and more streamlined communication mean that your team will always perform optimally. It is only natural for your employees to become inefficient if they’re not being led towards hard work.
Plus, your fleet manager won’t be able to do much if they’re not aware of the facts on the ground. Telematics can help fill this gap and thus allows better integration between the command center and your employees on the road.
It also smoothens the communication between fleet managers and the customers about ETAs and the other details. Timeliness, consistency, and commitment are all bound to impress your clients, and they will surely appreciate you going the extra mile for their sake.
Customer satisfaction coupled with your team’s conviction to your business cause will lead your company ahead of the competition.
Introducing A Telematics/Fleet Management System To Your Drivers
Now that we have gone through the merits of fleet tracking in great detail and understand that all segments of your business framework stand to gain much through this integration let’s understand the whole introduction part.
Your drivers will be defensive, perhaps even unwilling to cooperate at first…
But what good is a leader without their persuasive powers? You don’t have to be all bossy and assertive to get your point across. Instead, you can get your employees to cooperate if you use your communicative potential to its fullest.
We have witnessed such scenarios over and over again, and this is what we have learned over the years:
Explain The Causes & Potential Benefits Of The Change
You’ll have to start with the information we provided in the earlier sections. Show your drivers why you need a fleet tracking system to begin with. Show your employees the gaps and limitations of your current protocol this way. You’ll be better able to create a case for such an innovation.
Of course, you can’t say that everything is inefficient or unequal to the challenges that lay ahead because that would be an insult to your drivers. Instead, show them that there is room for improvement, i.e., how better decisions from the end of fleet managers, enhanced transparency, and a sound operational strategy can help them get the most out of their jobs.
Also, you need to show them what is in it for them: better security, streamlined communication, and fair analysis of their performance. Of course, it would be unfair to let hard work go unnoticed. Show your workers how a fleet management system will let you better assess the quality of work done and thus give hard-workers the incentives they so rightfully deserve.
Since fleet tracking eliminates the need for constantly phoning the drivers on the road for updates, you can also throw this in there and show your workers how all of this benefits them. Also, emphasize the importance of telematics in improving road safety.
By regulating on-road behavior, you intend to avoid crashes and the losses that come with it – physical, emotional, and financial. Show your drivers how you care about their safety and well-being and are willing to go the extra mile to ensure that they stay safe on the road.
Tell Them To Trust The Facts Rather Than Drawing Assumptions
Most of the problems and concerns that your employees will point to won’t even exist in reality.
For instance, they might be offended by the idea of being monitored. We have already discussed that fleet management is not about spying on your workers. Firstly, they know that they’re being tracked, and secondly, you’re only doing so for enhanced management of the fleet vehicles.
Small or big, all fleets benefit from fleet tracking, and companies have reported very good numbers regarding the financial aspect of implementing such a system.
Plus, the whole trust deficit debate shatters right from the beginning. Why would you hire people if you had nothing but the absolute trust in their being upright and honest workers? Show your team that such worries are divorced from reality – you want to make things better, increase productivity, and drive your business forward.
Plus, there won’t be any extra work for your workers either, in fact, the opposite is true. Not only will they not have to fill those horrid daily logs but also they’ll be saved from the trouble of constant phone calls and messages seeking location updates and so on.
The only thing that will change is that through better management, the same level of effort and conviction will deliver better results, i.e., when you factor in route optimization, better scheduling, on-time maintenance, etc.
Show Them How Fleet Management Fits The Company’s Interests
As a leader, you should also be able to evoke a moral sense of responsibility in your workers – you need to show them that the company they work for needs the system. You’re not installing a fleet tracking device and software only for boasting rights. Just because everyone else is doing so, there is a dire need to modernize the management apparatus, and you don’t want to lose the opportunity.
Fleet tracking may seem a bit invasive, and your employees would be right to point out their concerns here because they don’t understand it as well as you do. Show them how the business would suffer more from the road, not taken out of fear that it might be a bit unfamiliar. By showing them the system’s merits and how it will help drive the company forward, you will surely win approval.
Also, you need to point towards the symbiotic relationship between the progress of the company and that of its workers. The fates of both are conflated, and this is what you need to highlight in your briefing. Help your workers understand that by driving their company ahead in the business, they are, in essence, driving themselves ahead in their careers and unlocking more perks and better compensation.
Discuss Things Beforehand
Also, one area where team leaders and business owners take the wrong start is timing – you need to express your intentions early on. Don’t wait till the last moment to unveil your plans because this will create an atmosphere of hostility and imposition for your drivers. They will feel violated and belittled if you drop the news on them at the eleventh hour.
While the fleet tracking technology has numerous benefits, and you’ll be able to present a decent enough picture for your employees, your timing will matter. You should ideally discuss things early on and start conditioning your workers to accept change by highlighting the numerous benefits of the technology and the things it will bring to the table.
Another very wrong approach is to install the technology in secrete and then revealing things with a bust – this may seem climactic and all, but it is a very bad idea. Not only does such behavior goes against the essence of leadership, but it also gives weightage to the lack of trust argument. You might think that opening with proof of the technology’s capabilities will pack a punch, but it will only make your workers uneasy.
Be Honest About Things
You don’t have to create an unrealistic or inflated narrative about the benefits of the technology.
While the list of benefits is quite long, you can’t make bold claims like fleet tracking by itself will make the team more productive. It is a tool that will help you get the most out of your routine. The commitment of your workers will remain as relevant later on as it is right now.
Also, you should tell your drivers that you’ll have access to all of their driving data, but at the same time, you need to create an atmosphere of trust. Show them how your intentions are in the right place, and you only want to use the said data most productively. Your honesty and openness to their addresses and concerns will show them that the addition is indeed worthwhile.
Explain How It Works
Half of the concerns will evaporate when you offer details about the revised protocol. Show your drivers what will change and what won’t. For instance, the fleet manager will only contact them when issuing orders or updates, i.e., not constantly. Also, the drivers will be warned ahead of time about impending maintenance trouble so that they can handle it early on.
And the list goes on…
You need to show them that the basics remain the same, transportation will remain transportation, the only variable element will be a more sophisticated and layered management style. Also, share your idea about incentives for top performers for every month (i.e., you can give them iTunes gift cards or other perks) to motivate them to carry on the good work.
In short, you need to be as supportive as possible and show that everyone has a lot to gain from this transition.
Answering The Legal Question
There is one more thing you need to consider: the law.
We can’t help you here because the legal regulations vary from state to state, so you’ll have to do a little fact-finding on your own and perhaps find a legal expert for consultation. It is not illegal to track commercial vehicles for management and safety, but there are some defined boundaries here.
For instance, you need to consent of your workers before you take such a step. This also means that it should be made known to them – doing so in secret is against the law. Plus, some states will require you to display a sticker on your vehicle showing that it is being tracked via GPS.
The exact rules vary from state to state, so please do your research in this regard beforehand.
Why Fleetr Is The Perfect Telematics Solution For Small-Sized Fleets?
We’ve covered in sufficient detail the importance of fleet tracking companies and how you can get your workers to see things your way. But your choice of a telematics system will be just as much important a thing as any other. You can’t make a rash decision here.
For small fleets, binding contracts, expensive trackers, and a minimum number of vehicles to track are some of the preconditions that make no practical sense. This is why we, at Fleetr, have introduced our product without such confinements.
We’ll ship you your free tracker device once you buy our subscription for a mere $9.99 per month for one vehicle, without any hidden charges or installation fees. You’ll simply have to plug and play, download our app on your phone and computer, and then get tracking.
Yes, it really is this simple, and this is exactly what we wanted for our fleet tracking application.
Delay it no further now that you know how lucrative the deal is. Call us today!