Having a business that requires someone to dispatch vehicles in order to deliver services could get very expensive. A business owner needs to think about the upkeep of each vehicle, driver safety and statuses, efficient routes, and so on. Hiring someone to tag along and monitor everything every time a vehicle gets sent out to perform services would break the company’s wallet, so many companies have started developing an easier way for a dispatcher or business owner to oversee their fleet of vehicles. One of the programs that have been developed is the fleet tracking software.
If a vehicle has a GPS (Global Positioning System) installed, then a person can buy and install a fleet tracking software to work in tandem with it. The fleet tracker uses GPS to monitors vehicles and their drivers in real time via satellites. All those who are using the software can be given access to the data being sent by the GPS tracker and review them to see where the service could be improved on or if the drivers and vehicles are safe and sound.
Fleet Tracking Features
There are many kinds of GPS fleet tracking programs being sold but they will usually include the following features:
- Vehicle location
- Route setup and giving the driver directions
- Monitoring the vehicle’s conditions (like mileage, fuel consumption, vehicle issues, etc.)
- Driver monitoring – The special thing about fleet tracking software is that it can monitor a driver’s behavior. It will be able to log the driver’s routes, whether he is speeding or not, and driving maneuvers (like whether or not he hard brakes or does sharp turns). The business will be able to know which drivers are just being idle or if he has gone off the route assigned to him.
- Driver attendance tracking
- Accident alerts
With these features, a business will be able to accurately identify where their strengths and weaknesses are in addition to helping them keep their expenses at a minimum. However, with the number of fleet tracking programs available, what are the factors that a person should consider before choosing one?
The three questions to ask when choosing a fleet tracking device
When choosing a fleet tracking program to install in a fleet, a person should ask himself the following questions:
- What are the types of information regarding the vehicles and drivers that he would like to monitor?
- How large is the fleet? Is the fleet made up of just a handful of cars or is the fleet the size of an enterprise?
- What is the budget, factoring in the upfront cost and monthly fees?
Once a person is able to outline his answers to the three questions, then he will be able to narrow down his choices in his fleet tracking program. The most economical programs could be acquired for free or with very low monthly fees, while the most expensive programs could come at around $30 per month of use. One thing to note is that many of these programs will not require the user to be bound by any service contracts.
What the package should include
Aside from the previously mentioned features, some capabilities that a person may consider checking off their list when shopping for a fleet tracking program are:
- Alerts or notifications via text and/or email
- Ease of use
- Mobile access
- Third-party integration
- Customer support
A person can customize the program to send him alerts when an accident occurs, when the driver goes off-route, or if the delivery has been successful. The program should not only be uncomplicated to use, but should also be accessible and with good signal. And since it works in tandem with the vehicle’s installed GPS, the program should be able to work with any third-party devices.