Optimizing Semi Truck Fleet Management With Advanced Tracking and Monitoring Systems
Optimizing Semi Truck Fleet Management With Advanced Tracking and Monitoring Systems

Optimizing Semi Truck Fleet Management With Advanced Tracking and Monitoring Systems

Determining the best trucks for your fleet is important, but fleet management is much more than that. Fleet management is a crucial part of a trucking or logistics company. Fleet management involves organizing and dispatching drivers, tracking cargo and trucks, and keeping track of regulations and compliance requirements. There’s a lot that falls under fleet management. Luckily, modern fleet trackers and monitoring systems can work to optimize a semi truck fleet of any size. 

What is Semi Truck Fleet Management 

Semi truck fleet management is the collective process of overseeing and optimizing a fleet of commercial semi trucks for transporting goods. Semi truck fleet managers can be responsible for many aspects of keeping a trucking fleet running smoothly. This includes vehicle acquisition – whether purchasing new or used trucks and trailers – maintenance, route planning, driver management, safety standards and regulation adherence, integration of new technologies, and data reporting. 

Commercial fleet managers can use a variety of modern technologies including GPS fleet trackers and monitoring systems to optimize their fleet. Vehicle tracking technology can assist with route optimization and efficiency, cargo security, maintenance management, customer service, and compliance. Nearly every aspect of fleet management can be optimized with truck gps trackers and related software. 

Active vehicle tracking relies on a truck GPS tracker or an entire telematics system. These monitoring systems can also include various sensors, data analytics, and communication tools. This technology can provide real-time locations of a semi truck and its cargo, data about speed, time spent driving, fuel efficiency, as well as mechanical and engine monitoring. All of this data combined can be used to ensure a fleet is efficient, safe, and reliable. Some insurance companies even offer reduced rates or discounts for fleets equipped with advanced tracking and safety systems. 

Uses of Fleet Trackers to Optimize Business

There are many different options for fleet trackers on the market. Some are aftermarket and need to be installed. Some truck manufacturers have begun including the technology in new models. While every tracker offers different features, they can all be utilized to optimize fleet management in the same ways. From improving fuel efficiency to keeping track of freight to ensuring safety, tracking and monitoring technology allows the focus to be on driving, and on the product, not on the route, maintenance schedule, or driving hours. 

Route Optimization 

Active vehicle tracking systems can assist in real-time route planning to avoid traffic or construction. Data can be analyzed for more fuel-efficient routes, improving overall fleet fuel consumption and environmental impact. Fleet managers can use data about idling time, or aggressive braking and driving to inform and educate drivers to improve their skills. 

Cargo Security 

The cargo on a semi truck is the whole reason for the truck moving. Semi trucks can carry 80,000 pounds of freight. Truck GPS trackers can not only provide real-time information on the trailer, but additional tracking systems can monitor cargo in real time. This extra security can serve as necessary evidence for any security issues, generally helps reduce the risk of theft, and increases the chance of quick product recovery. 

Maintenance Management 

Advanced monitoring systems and telematics can include sensors that provide real-time information including engine data, battery voltage, tire pressure, and information about scheduled maintenance and warranties. This data can help ensure the fleet is properly maintained, and minimize the chances for unplanned delays and expenses due to a breakdown. 

Customer Service

People are impatient. That’s why same-day and two-day delivery are such important concepts. That’s why customers sit glued to their phones watching the little car on the DoorDash app make its way to them. Fleet trackers ensure more accurate estimated delivery times, therefore improving customer satisfaction. Even if there are unplanned delays due to weather or other reasons, proving the transparency of accurate tracking can reduce customer frustration and driver pressure to make up for lost time.

Compliance and Safety 

The trucking industry faces a lot of regulations and compliance requirements, including Hours of Service (HOS) rules. These rules indicate how many hours a driver can be behind the wheel and how many hours of break time are needed in between driving shifts. Active vehicle tracking can determine the exact time a vehicle starts and stops, tracking the active hours. Automatic alerts can be set up to remind drivers and fleet management of when a break is needed. Not only does this help avoid paying Department of Transportation fines, but it also helps reduce fatigue-related accidents. The technology can help improve driver safety and the safety of everyone else on the road. 

Tracking systems can also monitor behavior such as speed, braking, and traffic rules and regulations. Some systems even allow for real-time feedback and alerts, audibly reminding drivers to “slow down.” This data can also be used to review with individual drivers, or for training new drivers – whether it’s behaviors to avoid or good driving skills semi truck fleets should highlight. 

Electronic logging devices (ELDs) can be integrated with tracking and monitoring technology to automatically record driving data. This saves drivers from having to manually log their data and ensures accurate hours for both payroll and compliance reasons. The automatic, streamlined, paperless workflows mean less time filling out and looking for paperwork, saving everyone time and energy. The more optimized the process is, the more drivers can focus on driving. 


Adapting to Technology

Incorporating and adapting to new technology can be challenging, however, the benefits and the return on investment are worth it. While older trucks may need to be manually outfitted with truck GPS trackers and other software, newer trucks are offering built-in telematics systems. Truck manufacturers including Hino, Volvo Trucks, and Mack are adapting to the new technology, making it even easier for semi truck fleets to set up and implement tracking and monitoring. 

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