Challenges Fleet Managers Face
As mentioned, fleet managers face many challenges and stress in the line of duty. Here are some of the things they have to handle on a day-to-day basis.
Fuel cost is one of the most significant expenses and the biggest cost-saving challenge for fleet managers. Fuel prices keep fluctuating, making it hard to predict expenses.
The prices may be low today, but fleet managers cannot control how long it will take to spike again. The factors that influence a spike in prices are beyond the manager. However, they must look for ways to reduce fuel consumption at all costs.
For instance, they may consider switching from petrol to electric or hybrid vehicles. They can carry out a cost-benefit analysis to determine the most cost-effective vehicle for their business.
Managers also have the responsibility to choose the best drivers’ fuel cards with the most favorable value deal for the business. But even with a fuel card, they need to monitor fuel management and driver behavior.
Governments worldwide are looking for ways to combat car pollution, the leading cause of global warming worldwide. Extreme climate change has been a wake-up call, and new regulations such as eliminating internal combustion engines are being passed to ensure cleaner air standards. Therefore, fleet managers must be aware of the new laws and develop in-house strategies to ensure compliance to the core.
Managers also have to check the roadworthiness of their fleet, defects, insurance coverage, licenses, permits, inspection sheets, and more checks to ensure compliance. They also need to conduct risk management and provide a documented trail of information regarding each fleet.
Such information is crucial during an inspection in case of an accident or during auditing.
Vehicle registration is another aspect of changing shape due to the new vehicle testing structures.
So managers are required to have new regulations on their fingertips and take charge to ensure compliance.
Keeping the fleet operating efficiently is paramount for any business. Depending on the company’s size, fleet managers may opt to outsource maintenance services or have an in-house team of mechanics.
Whichever the case, managers should ensure all vehicles are in good shape and have met all the legal standards. Despite their busy schedules, they must conduct daily round checks, regular maintenance checks, pre-purchase inspections, and follow-ups on reported defects.
For every fleet business to stay afloat, they also ensure their vehicles are in good health at all times. It, therefore, means fleet managers have to prioritize maintenance above everything else.
But with so much on their plate, missing maintenance schedules is inevitable.
Fleet managers must locate their vehicles at all times. They must keep an updated report of cars on each route, the driver responsible, transport cargo, and estimate the total cost of ownership. They must also track the nearest vehicle to a service call to reduce downtime and enhance customer satisfaction.
- Vehicle and Driver Safety
A fleet manager knows the safety of their drivers and vehicles comes first. Therefore, they put in place compromised security measures at any stage of the operation.
They undertake regular vehicle inspections, timely maintenance, monitoring location, and driving habits. Therefore, fleet managers are burdened with implementing safety guidelines that minimize fleet theft and accidents.
Fleet Tracking Solutions
Fleet managers face numerous challenges, whether overseeing one or several fleets. They have so much on their hands that they require their undivided attention. Each of the challenges requires a fair share of their time to handle.
Without integrating a technological tool to perfection, these tasks are not easy to accomplish. Fortunately, fleet tracking solutions provide much-needed help and assist managers in undertaking their duties with much ease, accuracy, and efficiency.
A fleet tracking system is a tracking technology that uses GPS to track and monitor fleet activities. The system collects, analyzes, interprets, and sends easy-to-understand data to the manager via a mobile device.
Fleet managers then use the data to make strategic business decisions and optimize fleet operations.
How Do Managers Benefit From Vehicle Tracking
Fleet tracking has transformed the transportation industry. The technological tool comes with unique features that enable business owners to control fleet activities while on the move. Here are some of the benefits.
Fleet managers no longer have to go through the stressful situation of running up and down, monitoring fleet activities, and following up on drivers. They can now see the location of their fleet from a mobile device in real-time.
The GPS tracking device connects to a series of satellites that help locate the vehicle’s position in a process called trilateration. The method uses a global navigation satellite systems network to determine the latitude, elevation, longitude, and time between the network and the vehicle.
The tracking application, installed on the mobile device, has a live map that visually indicates the vehicle’s location in real-time. The manager also receives updates immediately when things happen, such as overspeeding, idling, or acceleration.
Geofencing is a feature that comes in handy and helps fleet managers take control of their vehicles. A geofence is a virtual boundary of a premarked area.
Think of it as a virtual fence managers draw to control vehicles from entering or leaving the predetermined area. The system sends alerts immediately the vehicle leaves or enters the area; hence managers do not have to secretly follow drivers to monitor their adherence in keeping off some areas.
Being responsible for the safety of your drivers and vehicles is no joke. It requires well-thought strategies to curb accidents, high jackings, and the ability to respond to emergencies promptly.
Thanks to fleet tracking technology, managers can now guarantee the safety and security of their drivers and vehicles. The tracking systems send real-time alerts regarding bad driving behavior such as overspeeding and taking wrong turns.
The managers then alert drivers and request them to adopt safe driving behavior or personalized training plans.
Additionally, the system comes with an emergency button that enables drivers to alert the manager in case of an emergency, even in a low reception area.
Gone are the days when fleets broke down because managers had so much to focus on and forgot maintenance schedules. The tracking systems have a feature that enables them to set maintenance reminders and includes all the vital details.
They then receive alerts beforehand and are awarded enough time to plan accordingly. Systems such as fleetr allow for multiple users, thereby all the stakeholders involved in the maintenance process. They receive the alerts, and each plays their part towards the common goal.
Fleet tracking systems have a route optimization feature that enables managers to plan, save time and ensure vehicles get to their destination without much of a hindrance. The tracking software uses historical traffic data, GPS, and algorithms to determine the shortest and most convenient route.
Advanced tracking technology such as fleetr uses a more progressive route optimization approach; real-time dynamic routing.
The approach pushes drivers to route change even while on the road in case of traffic pattern changes, accident ahead, weather change, or a call to service. The result is streamlined operations and optimum utilization of resources.
Fleet tracking systems save managers from calling drivers or customers when coordinating deliveries. Real-time updates are sent to all the stakeholders simultaneously.
For instance, a fleet manager does not have to call a driver to notify them of a route change.
The system automatically sends the alerts. The system also alerts the customer and calculates the estimated arrival time.
Smooth communication eliminates misunderstanding and makes work easier for everyone.
Fuel expenses have been the biggest headache for small and complex transport businesses. The onset of tracking technology has come as a significant relief since fuel management has become a reality.
Today, managers can track fuel consumption and regulate internal factors that affect the costs. For instance, tracking devices collect data that result in unnecessary fuel consumption, such as overspeeding, acceleration, engine idling, and taking a long route.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Fleet Tracking System for your Business
It’s terrific how fleet management has become easy thanks to technology. However, Managers must then ensure the solution they choose can meet business needs. Here are some of the factors they must consider before committing.
Before settling on a fleet management system, it is vital to ensure all the features you need to optimize your business operations.
For instance, does it send notifications when a vehicle moves out or enters a geofenced area?
Does it send real-time alerts on the location of your fleet?
Does the system integrate with a mobile device?
So, list down all the features that will make a difference in your business and use them as a buying guide.
The last thing you need is a system that will complicate your life further. So, choose a system that is simple with a user-friendly interface. It will be an excellent idea to request an in-person demo and gauge if it’s easy to use, especially by the least tech-savvy guy in your team. If not, consider other options.
- Customer Support and Training
What happens if the system fails during a trip and the vendor fails to answer your calls?
That can be bad, especially for small businesses trying to establish good customer relationships.
Therefore, choose a vendor ready to offer all the support you need through phone, email, or live chats. It would be fantastic to find a selfless one who goes out of the way to create how-to videos.
Ensure the tracking system of your choice is easy to install. A DIY system would eliminate the cost of hiring a professional installer. Additionally, ensure the system comes with an easy-to-read manual for easy installation.
You can never be wrong with a tracking solution that offers real-time updates.
Such a system provides fleet managers with all the crucial information they need to run the fleet immediately it happens.
Although you will pay a monthly subscription to keep the system running, the cost is less compared to the burden of choosing a passive solution.
Real-time tracking providers conduct regular upgrades to ensure the system meets your business’s changing demands. Therefore, the solution is cost-effective compared to purchasing new software often.
A real-time tracking system sends data via a cellular or satellite system. The system continuously updates data; hence users receive helpful information every second or according to their preference. Such a system reduces downtime and enables managers to promptly make crucial business decisions or respond to emergencies.
Choose a tracking system that is easy to install. For instance, a plug-in tracking device only requires you to slide it inside the OBD port on the dashboard. Additionally, ensure the device comes with an easy-to-read interface. A DIY system will save you the cost of hiring a professional installer.
The Best GPS Tracking System For a Fleet Business
If you plan to integrate a fleet tracking system in your transportation business, you should look no further.
Fleetr, your reliable tracking partner, provides the best tracking solutions at an affordable rate.
We provide a tracking device, tracking software, and tracking application as a complete package. We charge a monthly subscription fee of $5 and no consultation fee.
Our ODB II devices are easy to install and do not require a battery to operate. All you need is to locate the OBD port, plugin and play. It’s that simple.
Our fleet tracking software is customer-centered and addresses all the day-to-day challenges managers go through. The best part is that it is in-house hence managers get all the help they need from our experts.
It also means that it integrates well with the mobile app and provides relevant and vital information for your business.
On the other hand, you can download the app from the app store of google play store. It is easy to navigate and has all the features you need to enhance fleet operation.