Fleet management and fleet tracking are important aspects of a shipping and logistics company. An effective fleet management system is beneficial to the shipping business as it can provide great insights about all the vehicles in the fleet and also help to file fleet tracking reports that can even be used to motivate and encourage healthy competition between drivers.
What is Fleet Management?
The vehicles of a fleet in a logistics company are one of the most important assets of the company. They are at the center of all the shipping operations.
Samsara’s website has a very informed article on fleet management. In a nutshell, fleet management refers to all the managerial processes undertaken by fleet managers that are associated with increasing productivity, increasing efficiency, decreasing the risk of accidents or break-downs, and reducing delays in delivery, to name a few.
An effective fleet management system is complemented by a good fleet management software.
What is Fleet Tracking?
Fleet tracking is an integral part of the fleet management process. Fleet managers are required to track the performance of their fleet and the drivers from the time of acquisition to the time of disposal. Commendable fleet tracking systems allow the managers to be able to do that and more!
Fleet tracking, otherwise known as “GPS fleet tracking,” is a fleet management system that utilizes the telematics system where the GPS is combined with the on-board diagnostics (OBD) port, typically to map the exact location of the vehicle and its speed.
The data collected through fleet tracking has many applications. The fleet managers can analyze the movement of vehicles in straight roads or at sharp turnings, fuel consumption, driver performance, and more. Such an analysis helps the fleet managers to file fleet tracking reports that can be shared with other colleagues and employees of the company.
How do Fleet Tracking Reports Help Businesses?
Fleet and vehicle tracking reports provide valuable data about fleet performance. You can analyze these data using spreadsheets or other data visualization tools that come with the fleet management software to optimize the performance of vehicles and improve cost savings for the company.
Benefits of Fleet Tracking Reports
Most logistics and shipping companies utilize fleet tracking reports because of the perks that entail their usage.
Global Positioning System (GPS) trackers help to track vehicle locations at periodic or non-periodic intervals. The vehicles are usually tracked every few minutes, but it is also possible to track them live every second.
The reports can help to analyze the vehicle position at a specific instance of time and maintain its record for future reference.
2. Hours of Service (HOS) Compliance
In an effort to maximize profit and revenue, some drivers may step out of their comfort and drive for long continuous hours. Discomfort and fatigue during driving can be very dangerous to the driver, goods, and other civilians as well. Fleet tracking ensures that the drivers comply with the Hours of Service (HOS) regulations, thus avoiding accidents, fines, and other unwelcome incidents.
Fleet tracking reports can comprise enormous data about vehicle and driver performance. All of this data can be analyzed, and potential problems can be diagnosed. Any problems or faults in a vehicle of the fleet can help the manager and technicians make sound decisions about the maintenance and disposal of the vehicle.
4. Fuel Consumption
Monitoring fuel consumption along different routes allows the managers to optimize the routes and their performances for better fuel economy. Fleet tracking reports also enable you to identify areas where your fleet can be more fuel-efficient.
Driver Monitoring and Encouraging Healthy Competition
Fleet tracking reports help fleet managers and company owners to keep an eye on the drivers and their performances by providing actionable insights to avoid unhealthy practices and encourage healthy competition among drivers. These reports further help to improve the safety and security of not only the drivers and the goods they are transporting but also of other drivers, pedestrians, and animals that are encountered en route.
Some parameters that are generally monitored using fleet tracking reports to motivate and encourage healthy competition among various drivers in the fleet are:
Speed limit violations can have grave consequences for the company both in terms of finance and reputation. To deliver the shipment on time or to cover greater distances in a shorter duration of time, certain drivers may over-speed on the roads. When caught by speed traps, they can mean huge fines, and it gets even worse when accidents occur due to over-speeding.
However, it is not always the case that the driver exceeds the speed limit voluntarily. Using good fleet management software and fleet tracking reports, the drivers can be made aware of their speeding performances so that they are more alert the next time they are on the road.
Do you feel that your driver is making unnecessary stops that are costing time and money? Well, fleet tracking reports empower you to view the driver/vehicle history to look at stops and delays.
Stops are not unavoidable. In every route, the driver has to stop at certain places for various reasons like HOS compliance. Sometimes, stops at certain places at certain times are unsafe.
Stopping at risky places in odd hours can lead to theft of the goods and other crimes that can put the driver’s life as well as the company’s financial investment in danger. Fleet tracking reports allow managers and owners to make educated decisions on when and where the vehicle can stop.
Idling is detrimental to the vehicle’s life, increases fuel costs, and has a negative impact on the environment. Under unfavorable climatic conditions, idling can be unavoidable. But in instances like lunch-time or at stops, leaving the vehicle idle is not appreciated.
Through monitoring the delivery and reporting time of the fleet drivers, the company can appropriately recognize and reward the drivers that are more punctual in the form of promotion, bonuses, or salary increments. This creates a healthy competitive spirit among other drivers to perform well and match or exceed the company expectations.
5. Vehicle Handling and Driving Habits
Driving habits of the drivers can be analyzed by looking at fleet tracking reports. Aggressive cornering, over-speeding, and jumping signals can be effectively discouraged for the safety of the drivers and the general public.
What Does All of This Boil Down To?
Educated usage of fleet tracking reports allow managers and owners to monitor, asses, and coach the drivers of their fleet for better performance and safety.
Various rewarding methods can be employed to analyze and reward the drivers in numerous ways, like recognition or promotion, to promote healthy competition among them.