Fleet management is an important practice used by manufacturing, logistics, and other supply chain partners to organize the movement of transportation vehicles and cargo. In today’s modern fleet management systems, a centralized fleet tracking software is combined with GPS vehicle monitoring devices to create a complete monitoring system for mobile assets. These systems can often achieve an excellent return on investment (ROI) by reducing fuel costs and improving the safety and efficiency of the entire fleet.
In today’s post, we present 5 ways in which these real-time vehicle tracking systems can protect your mobile assets. Many of these best practices are used across industries to safely move goods by land, sea, and air. Like any investment, it is important to leverage the features of a vehicle tracking system to get the most value for your operation.
1. Improved Driver Safety
One of the best ways to protect fleet assets is to provide regular and quality training for your drivers and other employees. Because a logistics team will naturally be dispersed due to the nature of transporting cargo, it is important that everyone clearly understands how to respond in different situations. Vehicle tracking systems can support these efforts by providing real-time data related to driver behaviors like braking practices and driving patterns. This information can then be used to create driving best practices and potential areas of concern for training purposes.
Vehicle tracking systems can also alert drivers and logistics planners during incidents of speeding or inappropriate acceleration. If an in-cab dashcam is installed additional data can be collected if there are traffic violations or disputes related to passing red lights or other roadside situations. All this information could be useful in the event of legal disputes or to protect the company from potential violations or claims regarding vehicle damage. Regardless of your specific approach to driver safety, there are numerous ways to leverage a vehicle tracking system to protect drivers, employees, and assets.
2. Theft Recovery
The vehicles themselves are some of the most valuable assets that a company will own. A tracking device can act as a direct deterrent to theft and give you an advanced warning of any unauthorized vehicle movement. One feature of tracking systems that really helps in these situations is geofencing, where a pre-programmed area can be set within the software. If a vehicle moves beyond those geographic borders an alarm and alerts can be sent immediately. Many companies also choose to add additional tracking sensors to trailers so they can be followed independently of the truck if needed as an additional layer of security.
3. Location Tracking
In addition to geofencing mentioned in the previous selection about security, vehicle tracking systems also provide other types of location data. Tracking devices are typically configured to transmit data in real-time or at set preprogrammed intervals. All location data is then collected in a centralized platform, typically a transportation management system (TMS). Fleet managers can monitor this data to ensure that cargo is moving according to schedule. Dispatchers can also reference location data to help drivers navigate complex routes and unplanned issues with traffic patterns. The ultimate benefit of this system is a greater ability to move fleet assets reliably and safely.
4. Maximize Vehicle Life
Another important benefit of vehicle tracking relates to maintenance and upkeep. Many software programs allow companies to track the complete lifecycle for each asset in the system. Pairing your software with durable barcode labels or equipment nameplates to tag vehicles and other mobile asset allows for streamlined documentation of maintenance, repairs, and other activities to maintain a complete and accurate historical record for each vehicle in your fleet. Metalphoto® anodized aluminum is an ideal substrate for equipment nameplates and asset tags, offering exceptional durability for outdoor exposure and extreme environmental conditions with an expected outdoor lifespan of 20 years.
With these systems, all information is kept in a single location from purchase until the point of asset sale or disposal. Some examples include the time and location of each vehicle job and details and schedules for all maintenance work performed on the truck or van. This allows the company to optimize performance and reduce repair costs and other expenses such as consumable parts and insurance rates.
5. Environmental Impact
One final way that these tracking systems can protect mobile assets is by reducing environmental impact. Pressure from federal and international regulations is driving fleet operators to reduce their fuel consumption and emission output. Identifying new efficiencies by reviewing vehicle tracking data can have a dramatic impact on your operational costs and help you plan future fleet upgrades and a transition to cleaner vehicles. A completely electronic vehicle tracking system also reduces paperwork and gives employees remote access for completing jobs in the field.
Real-time vehicle tracking has revolutionized how fleet managers control the important assets they are responsible for. With features that help protect the fleet from damage, theft, and unnecessary wear, it is also possible to use a fleet management platform to lower costs in several areas. When successfully implemented, a vehicle tracking system can add significant value to your company and create a more reliable logistics network.