The death of paper based fleet management
I find most businesses I deal with get by with manually managing their fleet using a combination of paper and phone calls until one of three things happens.
- They get too many vehicles and staff and start to lose track of what’s going on and where.
- They get audited.
- They see someone else’s fleet management software and realise what they’ve been missing out on.
Manual methods of managing your fleet are going to have their issues. Reporting is slow, data collection is inaccurate and then there’s the challenge of deciphering handwriting.
There’s also the time issue. Do you want your staff spending their time filling in forms, incorrectly, or would you rather they were getting on with the job? And that goes double for those with both office-based and field-based staff. At the end of the day you’ve got someone in the field filling in job sheets or log books and you’ve got someone in the office wasting time trying to decipher them.
The reason online fleet management solutions are so great, is that there are repetitive records that you are always going to need to be recorded that can easily be tracked without human intervention no matter where you or your staff are:
- Job start and finish time
- Kilometres travelled
- Start and finish location
- Time on site
Fleet management software also gives you insights into:
- Vehicle diagnostics
- Speed alerts
- Harsh braking alerts
- Excessive idle alerts
And the benefits to ditching the paper for your company are huge…
1. More accurate and complete data
Anyone who has had to transcribe details from a job sheet or handwritten invoice knows that it’s rare to get a form that is clearly written and has the full information required. Not to mention that the accuracy of what’s been written down. Automating the collection of this information through GPS fleet management software removes the ‘human’ element, creating accurate and complete data you can trust.
2. Live data from the field
When data is collected in the field it can be hours, days or, in the worst case, weeks until that information is taken to the office to be processed. Fleet tracking records the key data from your vehicles and sends it back to the management software in close to real time, so you always know what’s happening on the ground.
3. Better driver accountability and industry compliance
Most information for log books is automatically recorded such as time of trip and kilometres travelled. Not only is this a massive time saving, but the information recorded is more accurate, can be exported and stored indefinitely and is easily audited.
4. Time savings
How much time do you think it takes for your team to fill in these forms each day? Multiply that by number of team members and you can see the numbers start to get scary. Each minute spent on administration is a minute that could be spent on a customer. And that goes for the office team as well. How much time do they spend following up with clients and staff to clarify records? That’s a lot of savings.
5. Healthier vehicles
Issues with the vehicle such as over heating, low oil or harsh braking are immediately flagged as an alert in the fleet management software. This allows managers to recall the vehicle or send assistance. The right software will also allow the base team to book vehicles in for regular maintenance, alerting drivers when it’s due.
6. Safer drivers
With online fleet management you are able to have eyes on your drivers at all times. If a driver is speeding you and the driver will be both be alerted. If the driver is involved in an accident, you will know straight away. Weeks of historical data can be collated and reviewed giving you an overview of driver habits and the ability to coach drivers before an accident happens.
7. Fleet data you can access anywhere
These days fleet management software is being hosted in the cloud. That means you can access tracking, reporting and alerts from any device or computer at any time.
Want to find out the other ways GPS can help you build automate your operations and create a more efficient mobile workforce? Download the Automate your Army Slide Deck. This easy to read guide includes tips and processes to create an efficient workforce without becoming a micro-manager.