With all of the advancements in technology, businesses are able to improve upon their communication with customers and their shipping as well. A small business may feel like a little fish in a big pond but even they can benefit from all of the advancements in technology. Even medium sized businesses can have all of these benefits with the press of a button.
When it comes to monitoring the fleets of a SMB (Small to Medium Business) the GPS has given them the access that they need. They can manage the fleets easier with a direct method that is fast, easy and convenient.
For many years, businesses that rely upon their fleets have been using the GPS tracking method. Although it may seem like something new in the technology field for an SMB, they can also get the advantage of this modern benefit and beat the competition in ways they only dreamed of.
There are many different companies that have fleet vehicles such as trucking, electrical companies, contractors, heating and even construction businesses as well. Each one of these has found a way to utilize and recognize the advantages that they get from using the new technology of GPS tracking. There is no denying the great uses for GPS.
The ways that vehicle GPS tracking can improve your business are varied; here you can learn the ways that businesses can benefit from the use of GPS. You can learn here how the technological advancements with GPS tracking can give you resolution to many of the problems and difficulties that you may be facing. It can also guide you in finding the method of GPS tracking that can help you solve these problems and reap new unexpected benefits.
The Workings of GPS Tracking
Originally, shipping companies were the focus for creating a way to track vehicles. Since they are larger businesses, being able to track the fleet was a must in order to monitor their travel distance and location during the run. It was the spark that was needed in order to build and develop the GPS Tracking satellite system.
The GPS unit is used for a variety of information. You are able to retrieve the location, when a vehicle is started, when it is shut off, the routes that it is being driven, the speed at which they are driving and even when the vehicle sits idle. All of this is done through satellite communications.
There are different models of GPS that you can purchase depending upon what your needs are going to be. Someone from the office will have the ability to be able to see everything in real time, print reports of the vehicle’s usage and even watch where they are driving on a map. With the power of the internet, all of this is possible.
It is an excellent method of being able to monitor an employee that is abusing their driving privileges for recklessness. A business can keep track of when to send out other vehicles in the fleet, keep an eye on the amount of gas that they are using and be able to improve on the routes that they are taking for deliveries.
Fleet business owners are always looking for a way to be able to improve upon their company and find a savings where needed. The GPS tracking unit for fleets was put to use in the European area and the US followed the example. Owners are discovering the ROI or return on investment to be well worth the time and effort for installing the solution.
No Control Over the Situation
From the moment that a driver leaves the premise, there was initially no way of knowing if they were following the correct course and getting to the job site on time. Owners had no way of being able to see if their employees were trying to use the fleet vehicle for personal use or know where they may be stopping along the way. You just could not tell if a driver was living up to the expectations of the job.
It is common knowledge that most employees do not produce to the capacity in which they are required unless someone is watching over them. If you check the Global Productivity Reports regularly, you will see that it is a proven fact that many workers slack off when they get the opportunity. The numbers are high for those that work in an office environment so imagine the numbers for those that are left unattended on the road.
You will find that there are longer lunch breaks and even additional breaks that are not authorized routes to the delivery point, that are longer than necessary, and even stops that are not on the manifest for personal business. When a job takes longer to get to that means additional hours on the job to get it completed and a higher payroll as a result.
SMB’s have many obstacles in their way when it comes to monitoring their employees. For one, it is hard to prove the amount of hours that someone was actually on the clock. The report from the Society for Human Resource Management is a great way to see these statistics.
Further Struggles to Manage a Fleet
Gas consumption is a major concern for fleet business owners and not being able to monitor the speed of drivers is an issue. The faster a vehicle is driven the more gas it will use. This can be extremely costly for a fleet business. The system gives reports on the cost and usage of gas which shows more is used the faster a vehicle is driven.
Fuel usage is one of the biggest concerns for a fleet business. When a driver allows a vehicle to idle for long periods of time, this can add up and be very expensive for the owner. If you read the reports that are given by the system, you will find that starting the vehicle is nowhere near as costly as when it sits for too long, such as heating up the vehicle.
Wasting time is also another major concern for a fleet owner. If you own a business that is customer related such as plumbing or contracting, if there is an emergency and you are spending time trying to find the vehicle that is the shortest distance from the customer, you are wasting time and money trying to locate a driver.
Another major cost for a fleet business is the theft of the vehicles that they own. It can be frustrating and difficult to get a vehicle back, if at all. The amount of time that it takes to recover a vehicle from theft can take months and that is money out the window. Even if it is recovered, there is generally too much damage to justify repair, and any tools or company properties that may have been inside are never to be seen again. Being able to get a fleet vehicle back quickly saves both time and money.
An employee using their fleet vehicle for personal use is another major issue for owners. There is no way of knowing if they are making personal stops during business hours. Of course they may be allowed to keep the vehicle after hours, but who knows if they are using it during their time at home, using the company gas and adding mileage to the vehicle as well.
Have your eyes on the road with the GPS
Do you think that your employees on the road would change their work habits if you were sitting beside them on every road trip? Would they become more productive and perform their job the way that it was meant to be done? Reports show this to be factual.
Study reports have shown that when a GPS tracking unit was installed on fleet vehicles, the production increased for each employee. With the percentages upwards of 23 percent, it shows that productivity was enhanced and the business was not losing money.
There have been additional benefits found as well:
- Travel time has been reduced by 14 % per driver
- Profits in being able to service customers was increased by 12 %
- Fuel costs were reduced by 13 %
- Vehicle operators followed rules and increased output by 27 %
- The amount of overtime being paid out decreased by 9 %
There is an increase in production and the policies that are put in place for drivers are followed more closely when they know that they are being watched. GPS tracking units give the owner of a fleet the opportunity to be able to watch the driver’s every move from the comfort of an office chair while never getting in the vehicle.
More Effective Routes and Dispatches
Being able to respond to a customer quickly is a great benefit to fleet owners. When the need arises to be able to dispatch a driver to an emergency, time and money are saved and costs are decreased by knowing where the closest driver is located. The more efficient a fleet can be, the happier the customer the more cost efficient the company is going to be.
Knowing that your drivers are getting to the job site the fastest way possible is also another money saver. When your routes are more efficient, you are going to be able to get the job completed in a timely fashion, save on gas usage and cost, and if a driver is unsure of the destination, you will have the ability to get them there safely. It is even possible to reroute when necessary because of an accident.
Having the ability to track the amount of hours that an employee was at a job site is also very effective for a cost savings. GPS tracking units have the capacity for storing information and giving you the routes that were traveled, plus the amount of time taken, allowing you to discover if there are any discrepancies in the information given by the employee or customer.
The business owner of a fleet will be able to see when the driver headed out on the road for a job, when they landed onsite and when they departed. This gives the owner a way of being able to track the employee hours on and off site for the day.
Payroll is also a concern for fleet business owners. Owners can face great difficulty in trying to determine overtime hours, and with the opportunity of being able to have payroll automated with the time and the billing for each customer, it can save on the amount of hours being paid for a driver. Office workers are not inundated with unnecessary hours of adding up time for payroll.
Drivers using a fleet vehicle on off hours, during working hours for personal use and even theft are other big benefits of GPS tracking units. A fleet business owner will be able to retrieve the information of when the vehicle has been driven and where is went at time of usage. If the vehicle has been stolen, the unit will be able to tell them its exact location, which means they are going to be able to get it back quickly. This reduces the chance of damage and even loss of company tools and equipment.
GPS Units Have Many Beneficial Uses
When using a GPS tracking unit for fleet vehicles, the SMBs implementing them will be able reap the rewards in many ways that can be cost effective.
It could provide you with the information that you need in order to make revisions where necessary, such as in the policies you have for drivers. Fleet owners will be able to see where they need to make changes in personal usage, driving the speed limit and even just sitting in the vehicle and doing nothing. Small to medium business fleet owners can manage the driving of each driver.
The GPS tracking units that a fleet owner decides to use should be able to provide them with all of the information that they need easily. It is important to receive the reports that they need on when a vehicle was started and shut off, whether or not the driver was following the speed limits, how long they sat idle in the vehicle as well as when they arrived and when they left a specific site. This is the type of information that a fleet owner can use to improve on driver performance.
Many fleet owners find that the GPS tracking units can help them to provide incentives for their drivers as well. When production is increased and drivers are following the guidelines that have been implemented, it is easier for an owner to give a monetary incentive to those that are following the rules that have been put in place.
Finding the Right GPS Tracking Solution
In doing the research on the GPS tracking solutions that are available, it can be difficult to find the right one that is needed. Finding a company that can provide you with reporting in every aspect, keeping connected, customer service reliability and being easy to use is what you want to look for. Each business is unique in its individual way.
Small to medium businesses need to have the benefit of complete and full reports. Getting the information that is needed to make the decisions to improve on customer satisfaction and employee performance is crucial to the company. Reports that improve fuel efficiency, safer driving, idling time and starting and ending times at a job site, are vital to cost savings.
A GPS tracking Solution Company should understand the needs and desires of SMBs so that they can provide a solution that they can benefit from. Thinking of the usage for a GPS tracking system and not just the technical aspects is what a SMB should be looking for.
An SMB should also investigate the quality of service that a company can provide in the system staying online. You want to know if they experience a significant amount of the system being offline.
One last thing to consider is the reputation of a company. You want to know that if you have questions or concerns about the GPS tracking device they are going to be there to help you. If they are not helpful in meeting your needs or want to charge you for their help, they are not the company that you want to be doing business with.
A GPS tracking unit is beneficial for the entire company. It can reduce costs and increase the productivity in each and every department. SMBs are discovering that technology is on their doorstep and has been there for some time. They are now reaping the benefits that many others have already starting using and getting more out of the employees whether it is accounting, drivers and even customer service.
SMBs that do not utilize the GPS tracking unit abilities are not operating as efficiently as they should or could be. According to the reports and the research that has been done, they are actually not able to be as competitive as they could be, dealing with theft and poor customer service and a loss of revenue. The GPS tracking system gives fleet business owners the benefit of increasing productivity and reducing the loss of profit while increasing their overall safety as well.