10 benefits of using telematics for fleet management

13th January 2021

Highway at night with digital data overlays

Telematics services are now a must have for any fleet. No matter how many vehicles you’re responsible for, these tools ensure your fleet operation is as cost-effective and efficient as possible.

The benefits of deploying telematics software are wide-ranging. Among their primary advantages is that they can greatly reduce expenses such as fuel costs. But they can also improve efficiency, boost driver safety, and much more.

Telematics are therefore a vital asset for any effective fleet manager. Here are ten ways they can help make your life easier and your business more cost-effective.

1.  Reduced fuel costs

Reduced fuel costs are a key benefit of a good telematics solution. These tools can achieve savings in a number of ways. For instance, they can guide drivers to cheaper fuel stations, alert you to fuel fraud or advise employees on how to improve their driving style to be more efficient.

By highlighting harsh acceleration and braking, for instance, they can cut down on fuel consumption. Elsewhere, they can also spot if a driver is idling their engine unnecessarily, which can also help improve overall fuel management.

2.  Improved routing

Telematics can also analyse the routes your vehicles take and suggest more efficient alternatives. This may help reduce the time taken to reach destinations or avoid known areas of congestion that will slow your drivers down and increase fuel consumption.

Being able to rely on real-time data lets drivers make adjustments to their route on the move to avoid incidents or high traffic volumes. This also means less time on the road and more time helping customers.

3.  Better driver behaviour

Van driver making delivery with parcels on seat

Sensors that monitor vehicle inputs – including acceleration, braking and steering – can all give an insight into your employees’ driving standards. GPS tracking also helps spot any incidences of speeding that are putting the driver or other road users in danger.

This information can then be used to create a table of your best and worst-performing drivers. Training or even disciplinary action can then be implemented to improve behaviour.

What’s more, even the presence of telematics can boost driving standards, even if no direct action is taken. This is because individuals tend to be more cautious when they’re aware their actions are being monitored.

4. Real-time information

Real-time data on vehicle location can also be fed directly back to fleet managers, colleagues and even customers. This means you know where your assets and employees are at all times, helping you better plan your fleet activities.

You can also receive alerts if a vehicle goes outside a designated area or is used outside of working hours, for instance, to ensure your fleet is being used appropriately. Alerts can also be sent automatically if a vehicle is involved in a collision or other incident.

5.  Predictive maintenance

Telematics sensors can also keep an eye on your vehicle’s systems in order to spot any potential issues before they arise. This can allow you to schedule in maintenance to correct any problems and avoid issues such as breakdowns.

You can also set up alerts for routine procedures such as servicing to help you plan ahead. This not only prevents costly repairs, but improves productivity as vehicles will not be taken out of action unexpectedly.

6.  Improved customer satisfaction

Real-time tracking and route planning can be used to boost your customer experience. For instance, you can give much more accurate estimated arrival times for appointments, send reminders when an employee is close, or even let users track a driver in real-time.

If a job or delivery is delayed for reasons outside your control, you can also give quick updates and revised estimates. This can reduce the number of complaints you receive and ensure you don’t lose a customer’s business.

7.  Reduced paperwork

Businessman dealing with pile of paperwork with pen and laptop

The use of telematics can also improve employee satisfaction. Because their movements are tracked automatically, they will not need to spend time filling out tedious manual paperwork for areas such as mileage reporting or driving hours.

This also makes life easier for fleet managers. They have easy access to clear, simple reporting and analytics tools, giving them instant insight into their drivers’ activities. As a result, they have to spend less time hunting down information and can devote more efforts to more useful activities.

8.  More accurate expenses

Another benefit of improved reporting is it makes activities like calculating expenses claims quickly, easier and more accurate. Managers won’t have to worry about drivers padding claims for fuel costs or working hours. They can also gain access to accurate reporting on issues such as MPG and CO2 emissions to ensure they are meeting their responsibilities in this area.

9.  Improved security

Tracking software can instantly alert managers if a vehicle is being used when or where it shouldn’t be, which can protect your fleet in the event of theft, as well as any unauthorised usage by employees. The systems can be made tamper proof with tools such as battery backups even if they are disconnected.

Fleet telematics also help crack down on fuel fraud. By looking at location data for fuel card usage and combining this with GPS information from the vehicle, you can ensure any use is legitimate. According to Shell, nearly two-thirds of fleets in the UK see this as a major concern, so this may be an important factor for many firms.

10.   Reduced liability

Telematics can also be used in combination with technology such as cameras to give a complete picture of any incident. This can be especially helpful in determining liability in the event of any accident. For instance, as well as clear, high-definition video of what happened, it can show the exact speed of the vehicle, when brakes were applied and more.

This can greatly lower any insurance claims and costs. In one case, telematics were found to have reduced accident rates almost nine-fold, and cut expenses by 84 per cent. Insurance providers also also offer lower premiums for fleets with telematics on board.

If you’d like to know more about telematics and what they can do for your business, get in touch with our team of experts today.

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