Why vehicle tracking matters

Why vehicle tracking matters

  • Trucks move roughly 71.4 percent of the nation’s freight by weight.
  • Fleets may not be capturing accurate information from the field.
  • Technology can help drivers plan more efficient routes and avoid delays.

Early vehicle tracking systems were invented in the 1980s. As soon as it was introduced, vehicle owners liked this advancement. A nice advantage was that the cost of the device could often be offset by savings elsewhere. For example, some insurance companies began discounts on premiums for vehicles with a GPS tracking device installed.

Since then, trucking technology has improved. Now, commercial fleets use vehicle tracking devices to streamline operations and get the very most out of each piece of equipment.

What is GPS tracking?

GPS tracking means a network of satellites is triangulating the location, movement, and speed of a trackable device. A trackable device may be embedded in your vehicle (as it is in many new passenger cars sold today) or can be held in your hand (if the GPS feature on your phone is turned on, it is a trackable device).

GPS was originally developed for military use and has been standard in many automobile models since the late 1980s. Commercial fleets use GPS tracking systems today to maintain accurate information about where their assets are at all times.

What is GPS tracking used for?

The sheer magnitude of what a fleet owner or owner-operator deals with on a daily basis is evident when you think of the number of products that travel by truck every day. GPS tracking technology can help make fleets safer and more efficient. It may also help automate management and drivers of burdensome tasks that used to take a great deal of time and effort.

Fleets use GPS tracking to achieve many goals, including:

  • Route planning efficiency
  • Streamline employee schedules
  • Reduce time spent looking for assets
  • Monitor driver behavior and provide incident-specific coaching
  • Provide better customer service with accurate and timely information
  • Optimize routes to reduce time to destination
  • Recover assets after theft

Increase safety and lower costs

GPS tracking can help fleets improve safety. GPS truck tracking is an integral part of an overall technology solution. A good GPS tracking device will automatically alert the home office of certain trigger events when they happen.

For example, the home office can get a report when the driver drives too fast or experiences a trigger event such as hard braking, hard acceleration, or a hard corner. The fleet manager can then use that information to find out what happened and coach the driver on best practices to avoid a similar situation in the future. Better drivers experience fewer trigger events, and that means fewer collisions, written violations, and other incidents.

In the same manner, a truck GPS tracker can help you improve productivity and inform business decisions. Knowing where your assets are means you can ensure that your trucks spend more time on the road transporting cargo and less time sitting idle because the report hasn’t reached you yet that a particular asset became available for a haul.

Your GPS tracking system can alert you when one of your fleet vehicles leaves a predetermined geographic area. This is called geofencing.

Once you set up the borders of your geofence, you’ll be able to find out in real-time when one of your assets enters or leaves the boundary. This knowledge can lead to greater efficiency across your fleet, since you can get ready to send an asset right back out on a job or to scheduled maintenance once you know it’s about to roll into your location.

GPS tracking improves route efficiency

A good GPS tracking system can give you insight into where your fleet is experiencing longer detention times. In combination with geofencing, detention time reports helped one company, Flying Star Transport, improve its efficiency by as much as 15 percent, measured by hours per load. After implementing GPS tracking on all of its assets, the fleet CFO reported that the company’s average of five hours per load dropped to about four hours per load.

GPS tracking can solve common problems

Problem: You’re not capturing accurate information from the field.

Fleets of all sizes need to know where their assets are, for how long, and where they are heading. When this information is relayed by humans on phones, it can be delayed or inaccurate.

Solution: GPS truck tracking can tell you exactly when and for how long your vehicles are in operation, waiting at a delivery location, sitting in traffic or in any other condition.

Problem: Accountability is sometimes inconsistent. 

Almost everyone (in all kinds of jobs) admits to taking a long lunch sometimes. Nearly half of American workers admit to exaggerating their reported hours sometimes. One-fifth of us show up late for work once a week or more. Unaccounted labor hours add up to costly losses over time no matter what industry you’re in.

Solution: GPS tracking gives you the opportunity to train your employees to be more accountable for their unsupervised time on the job.

Problem: Some field-service companies may struggle to achieve revenue growth.

Solution: GPS tracking is a tool that allows you to manage multiple teams and vehicles remotely so you can book more jobs. Smart technology helps you streamline daily tasks and simplify project management.

Use GPS asset tracking to improve profitability

GPS tracking technology puts knowledge in your hands. This knowledge can help you improve routes and workflow, driver performance, customer service, and overall ROI for your business. With a GPS tracker on each asset, you can automate asset allocation, reduce labor hours, and potentially increase your company’s profitability.

Read more about how KeepTruckin’s GPS technology can help you run any size fleet more safely and efficiently. Call 844-325-9230 or email us at support@keeptruckin.com.


Esther Copeland

Esther Copeland is a lot of things, but one of her favorite labels is -- writer. In addition to corporate communications and case studies, she was a monthly columnist for the award-winning magazine, Southwest Florida Parent & Child for over six years. Esther has had a resume business and has written successful grants, including a multi-million dollar grant that was awarded by the USDA. She writes articles, blog posts, emails, website content, and case studies.

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