The growing popularity of vehicle tracking systems in businesses that have large fleets is clearly evident as technology improves and becomes more effective. The proposed benefits are increased efficiency and operability whilst subsequently improving profits through reduced downtime and vehicle maintenance. There are however a number of technophobes out there who still feel that tracking systems are not suitable for their business, feeling that the methods such as mobile phone systems and timesheets are just as effective when managing fleets. Part of the reason these managers are not implementing tracking systems is due to fear of technology and a number of other misconceived trepidations. Hopefully this article will allay some of the fears surrounding GPS vehicle tracking.
Some managers are convinced that the implementation of a vehicle tracking system says to their staff members that they simply do not trust them and would prefer to keep tabs on them throughout the working day. This view is common, but mislaid. Implementation of a system is purely a way for managers to improve efficiency by reducing down time and increasing operational knowledge. Over an extended period of time it allows managers to make vital decisions on how improve business functions, reduce the maintenance costs of specific vehicles as well as increase fuel efficiency across the entire fleet.
It is not only managers who feel that vehicle tracking systems are an invasion of privacy. These fears are understandable as staff will undoubtedly feel that a device that tracks their every move is invasive. What is important to remember however is that while these systems can be used to check up on certain drivers, their ultimate objective is to make working life easier for everybody in the company. In most cases GPS technology and recording will reduce the amount of paperwork each employee must fill out as well as reduce the amount of time they spend out on the road. Once these benefits are realised, staff members will soon be won round.
Implementation is another factor that prevents many businesses from utilising vehicle tracking solutions. Some may feel their operation will simply not be compatible while others will feel it is too expensive. In the majority of cases however a trained professional will conduct installation giving all parties information on how the system works and how to operate it effectively. In terms of the costing, implementation can be a major investment but it should always be remembered that the money saved will soon outweigh the implementation costs; most cases studies reveal that systems are paying for themselves after around six months to a year.
As previously stated some managers are happy with their tracking methods already in effect. An example would be a mobile phone system; while this form of system has its benefits, they are fraught with technical deficiencies. For instance, it is extremely easy for staff members to hoodwink managers on locations and directions over the phone, additionally it is too easy to leave a phone in the vehicle when on a job or even in the pub. With an up to the minute system allowing for the location, speed and direction of any vehicle in the fleet, it is possible to root out bogus overtime claims, extended lunch periods, unscheduled breaks and even poor driving habits. Having all of this information will considerably improve the efficiency of the company by reducing instances of the aforementioned situations.
It is hoped that this information has helped to allay the fears of managers concerned with vehicle tracking systems. As GPS technology improves it would be foolhardy not to take advantage of it; especially if it can increase profits. Curtailing bad behaviour and increasing efficiency is the name of the game and any tool that can help in this should be utilised to its fullest extent.
Business and technology expert Thomas Pretty looks into how vehicle tracking systems can help improve the efficiency and profitability of fleet based companies.