Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Only 1 in 5 Companies use a Vehicle Tracking System!

What are the reasons for companies these days who are choosing not to have tracking devices fitted to their vehicles despite the financial and efficiency benefits that can be gained?

What is the main barrier to having a Fleet Management System installed?

Do you have the right to know where your company vehicles are and how they are being driven?

Driver Resistance – Many employees see a vehicle tracking unit as a way of spying on their drivers. The main obstacle is that you can monitor your drivers Private usage, now this doesn’t seem so bad on company vans however when you have a company car and you are permitted to use the vehicle when you wish the ‘Big Brother’ aspect keeps getting bought up, however if it is your vehicle and your fuel why shouldn’t you have the right to know where it is and when it has been used? Having the HR department on your side can always be a large factor in Vehicle Tracking, if you simply bring it in as a necessity to bring it into line with your Insurance Policy and Security measures then your drivers don’t have a choice (the drivers which are normally against the idea of Vehicle tracking are normally the ones who know they have to change their ways). Incorporating this into your employee handbook also means that new employees will be signing and acknowledging that they are aware that there is a tracking device within the company vehicles.

Speeding within a company vehicle during private usage is also another area which companies do not like to tackle however they are actually breaking the law and they are using your vehicle so why wouldn’t you want to know, also if your company logo is on the side of the vehicle they could be damaging your company image, drivers are ambassadors of your company when driving even when it is being used for private usage and this should never be forgotten.

A few months ago we ran a trial on two company vans to see how they were treating the companies’ vehicles, we asked the drivers to continue their driving habits and not to think about the vehicles having trackers in and the results were as follows:

Week 1 – 314 speeding offences of which 120 of these were over 80mph.

After the week 1 figures were released to the drivers, we then asked them to drive knowing that we would be monitoring their driver habits and how they would drive knowing that their Transport Manager would be getting weekly reports, the results are as follows:

Week 2 – 57 Speeding offences of which 1 was over 80mph.

It doesn’t take much analysis to understand where you can make savings on the fuel bill, driving at 90mph rather than 70mph uses 15% more fuel so with this one feature the fuel bill would be reduced. We can also reduce the risk of accidents and keep the vehicle in better condition as it is driven with care. Since this trial the company invested in our Telematics system and have seen big savings on their fuel bill just from this one feature, not to mention the increase in productivity and the use of Vehicle Timesheets, no longer are they relying on the drivers to give them overtime hours this can now be done automatically and with no discrepancies.

There is always resentment when a Fleet Management System is put in place however after a couple of months it does die down and they are used to being tracked, sometimes sharing the info with the drivers puts them more at ease. Many companies now use it as healthy competition by rewarding drivers who don’t break the speeding limit or always arrive to site on time.

From a Transport Managers point of view the admin benefit is massive, private mileage can be monitored and recorded, vehicle timesheets are also readily available and can be signed off immediately by your drivers without having to wait for them to submit mileage journey times. Customer/client disputes can be resolved with the use of a telematics system, missing appointment’s for leaving sites early can cause problems with your customers however through the historical reporting these can be monitored and dealt with accordingly.

Overcoming drivers backlash is never easy, however if you gave your own vehicles to a new employee you have the right to know where it is and how it is being driven, and also if you can save money on your fuel bill and increase productivity the Return on Investment will more than cover the cost of the system.

Cost of the system is probably the biggest deterrent we come across from customers as people are unaware how quick they can regain that money back, remember the money that you can save through the system goes straight onto the profit line, simply reducing your fuel bill by 10% is a saving which any owner would like to see go to them rather than out of the exhaust of their fleet of vehicles.

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