Competition in the transport industry is fiercer than ever. Every fleet manager is striving for greater productivity and lower costs. Unfortunately, without accurate data on your current operations, increasing productivity presents a significant challenge. The National Transport Commission (NTC) recognises data as the key to success in this sector, calling on businesses to provide information that will help inform future industry policy.
"A productive Australian transport system should base its planning, investment and access decisions on complete, comparable and the most up-to-date data.” - NTC Chief Executive, Paul Retter
The industry currently faces fierce competition from innovative technology businesses. This makes it more important than ever for fleet managers to embrace data-based solutions to streamline fleets and identify areas of improvement. Custom solutions based on your business insights will help you overcome daily challenges and achieve your most important goals.
Here are five custom GPS integrations to help you to increase productivity and gain a competitive advantage.
When it comes to scheduling and allocating work, the days of paper manifests and invoices are over. Integrating an electronic system such as iCOS LIVE with telematics data will allow you to create the most efficient scheduling process. Once a job has been allocated, you can track the location of each vehicle in real time and check for proof of delivery. This is sent immediately to the invoice system so you can bill your customers and get the revenue back into your business as soon as possible. Rather than a driver inputting each stop on their journey, you can use location data to generate automatic inputs. For example, if a truck stops a certain place, at a particular time, you can automatically log that a driver has fulfilled a job. This saves time while ensuring all details are accurate and up to date. Both fleet managers and customers will have real-time visibility into the status of pickups and deliveries.
Integrating with a route optimisation tool provides a tool to work out the best route for every trip based on factors like job location, traffic conditions and even specific business rules. For example, if a restaurant won’t allow delivery of produce during service hours, these timeframes will be taken into account when calculating the route. This will help your fleet get to more jobs every day, while reducing unnecessary time on the road. In turn, you’ll minimise wear and tear on your vehicles to perform the same amount of deliveries and pickups or reduce your fleet size with a tangible effect on your bottom line.
Rather than waiting for issues to arise before scheduling a service and taking a vehicle off the road, use data to keep on top of your upcoming maintenance needs. Integrating with a maintenance scheduling system allows you to use real-time odometer readings and vehicle tracking to know when you have a service coming up. This helps prevent problems and allows you to keep track of which vehicles are available. You can also integrate with an inventory management system so you don’t have to keep costly equipment or spare parts stocked unnecessarily. With the ability to project upcoming services, you can ensure you have the right parts ordered with enough lead time, helping to keep costs down and stay organised.
The payroll process for drivers can be complex. Your payroll team has to figure out the different award rates for every driver based on weekend work, overtime, public holidays and more. This is even more difficult when you rely on manual timesheets, with no way to confirm the hours your drivers have logged. By integrating your payroll system with telematics, you can track each driver’s hours with a unique ID. You’ll have real-time data on exactly how long they were driving as well as the time or day of the week, so you can automatically calculate correct award rates in the system and produce an electronic payroll file. This leaves no room for human error or fabrication and will significantly speed up the process.
Just like online payroll, tracking the breaks your drivers take is a manual process that relies on correct logbooks. Driver fatigue is a significant cause of accidents on the road, so it’s not enough to take their word for it. Integrating telematics with a fatigue management solution such as an electronic work diary will allow you to alert your drivers in real-time when they need to take a break. Track drivers’ work and rest breaks automatically, and eliminate the possibility for manual error or false entries. This accurate data will help you manage driver fatigue and implement the most suitable safety policies if you notice consistent breaches. Ultimately, it will also allow fleet managers and drivers to better plan long trips, by assigning drivers with enough hours before the next rest period.
Thanks to data analytics we now have more information at our fingertips than ever before. Making use of these insights is crucial for businesses in the freight and transport industry to gain a competitive edge. With real-time data on your own operations you’ll be able to pinpoint areas of improvement, streamline broken processes and significantly increase productivity.
Download our free e-book now to learn more about how GPS integration can help you get ahead.