A Connected Car Approach to Fleet Management

Whether your business has a fleet of just a few company cars, or you manage dozens of long-haul trucks, you can boost your organization’s efficiency, avoid liability, and reduce costs by incorporating Internet of Things technology into your approach to managing your vehicles.

The world of connected cars is growing more sophisticated by the day, and modern machine-to-machine technology can go a long way towards streamlining your fleet management system. Here’s a brief look at how IoT can optimize work processes for fleet managers:

Integrate your vehicle data into your existing systems

Taking advantage of connected vehicle data doesn’t have to require huge investments in new systems. Rather than starting from scratch or creating siloed solutions, brokering the data into your existing systems can expand functionality and provide more direct benefit to your business. By incorporating vehicle data into cloud based systems such as Salesforce.com and ServiceMax, you can automatically produce mileage reports, analyze route profitability and trigger workflows based on rules such as geofences or time spent in a specific location.

Develop a dashboard monitor to track the real-time progress of each vehicle

Want to know if your driver is on schedule with a delivery? Rather than waiting to hear from him when he arrives at a checkpoint, you’ll know instantly if he’s been delayed by visualizing his journey on an interactive map that uses GPS tracking to display his position. Your dashboard can simultaneously display each vehicle’s coordinates, and allow you to drill down to see data about miles, average speed, and estimated remaining travel time for each car, while also incorporating real-time traffic data. This data can then be used to instantly alert drivers when they should use alternate routes.

Find out which drivers are engaging in risky behavior

Your drivers may have a “How Am I Driving?” sign on the backs of their trucks, but don’t leave it up to fellow road warriors to report bad behavior—with IoT technology, you can receive instant alerts if your drivers aren’t following the road rules. By setting up “geofences,” you can receive automated alerts if your driver strays from an approved route. Using telematics to track your driver’s speed and path, you can tell if he is going over the speed limit or making a risky left turn. A connected fleet is a safer fleet—you can use this knowledge to retrain your drivers, or replace those that consistently defy the rules. As a result, you’ll likely be able to lower your insurance premiums, too.

Use remote diagnostics to check the health of each vehicle

Taking your vehicles out of action for routine maintenance can delay deliveries and hurt your profits. By incorporating sensors into your fleet’s equipment, you can use remote diagnostics to instantly verify that your vehicles are in working order, or get an immediate notification if a repair is needed. This data can also be instantly shared with your mechanic, reducing the time required to make the repair. When you’re able to perform maintenance to address minor issues as soon as they arise, you’ll be able to avoid the costly disruption of a major breakdown while one of your vehicles is en route.

Moving to IoT technology for your fleet management puts all the data related to your vehicles right at your fingertips—enabling you to quickly get a snapshot of what’s working and what’s not, so that you can optimize your fleet’s performance for more efficient, cost-effective service.

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