If your company is managing multiple vehicles, the next step you'll want to take is to start using fleet management and tracking software. Using the right platform will allow you to improve efficiency, performance, transparency, and safety. Being able to get transportation data and use it to optimize your processes can be very valuable to your business and everyday operations. But with so many software platforms to choose from, which one do you go with?
Here are five factors to consider:
1. Safety Features
Putting safety on top of the list will prevent costly accidents. That's why you want to look for a fleet tracking software that has safety features in place. Some of the features you can find in a good fleet management software will have alerts that tell the driver when they're driving too fast.
It will also use data to come up with a driver score for your staff. You'll be able to tell which drivers are a liability to your company. Finally, it will provide helpful alerts that warn drivers of potential dangers. This includes weather conditions, road construction, and other risks. When an emergency does occur, you'll be notified right away.
2. Maintenance Reports
Maintaining your vehicles is an integral part of managing your fleet. Poor management may result in delays and even vehicles breaking down during transit. A good fleet management software should have diagnostics in place and integrate maintenance data to prevent these things from happening.
It can run diagnostics to see if there's anything wrong, so drivers will be able to avoid accidents. It will also track maintenance dates and provide recommendations for when you should get a mechanic to take a look at the vehicle. This will allow you to avoid situations where you'll have to get repairs right before a time-sensitive fleet schedule.
3. Optimize Routes Based on Many Factors
With regular GPS solutions, drivers are provided with the fastest route in terms of distance. But many factors affect how quickly they get to the destination. The software should consider things like traffic congestion, areas with construction, weather conditions, and recent accidents on the route. Being provide this real-time data will allow drivers to choose the best routes based on many factors and get to the destinations faster.
4. Helps You Save on Fuel Costs
Aside from the cost of vehicle depreciation and maintenance, you also have to consider your fuel. The cost of fuel can add up for larger vehicles, so you want to do whatever you can to reduce these costs. The software should be able to do several different things to reduce fuel consumption.
It should try to improve driver performance for fuel-efficiency. It should identify the cheapest locations for drivers to refuel. It should try to reduce idle time so that fuel isn't being used during stop-overs. You'll be surprised how much money you'll save through these three tasks.
As your operations grow, you may be going from a dozen fleets to a few dozen fleets. That's why you need to make sure that your fleet tracking software can grow with you. Some software platforms are only designed for a small number of vehicles. Some can handle larger fleets, but the UI may make it harder to keep track of and manage the fleets.
These are the five factors to consider when looking for a fleet management program. Other features are valuable, such as detailed electronic reports, two-way communication, and route planning. But these five should be the features to look for when evaluating different software programs.