Big data can be extremely important to organizations and their fleets — when combined with data analysis, it can help streamline an array of business operations. Every day, fleets amass information around engine status, vehicle speed, number of stops, vehicle location, fuel usage, routes driven, tire pressure, ETAs and so much more. When this large volume of data is integrated into and funnelled through a digital fleet management software platform with predictive analytics capabilities, it results in real-time feedback and driven insights that managers can use to employ better business practices.
Big data technology used in fleet management can help organizations improve their business. Using cloud-based platforms, businesses can collect and track data in near real time, including things like mileage and speed. Not only that but it can help when combined with telematics software because this is when businesses can really understand how their fleet of vehicles or other assets are operating on a day-to-day basis.
Fleet behaviour: Safety is a top priority for every fleet. This includes how drivers operate their vehicles both on and off the road. Telematics lets fleet managers gather data about how their drivers operate and manage their vehicles and see where they might be operating outside of what’s expected, including speeding, harsh braking, idling and other risk factors. Managers can evaluate this data to see where driver performance is exceeding expectations or where additional coaching is needed.
Fleet Maintenance: Getting ahead of vehicle maintenance issues helps to ensure you’re not missing out on any big money-saving opportunities. By leveraging big data related to vehicle health and diagnostics (e.g., engine status, fuel level and mileage) and funnelling it through a fleet management system, managers can proactively address vehicle issues before they become a problem. Fleets can also analyse the data to see which vehicles tend to remain in better shape and which may need to be replaced to optimize fleet performance.
Compliance: Many fleet vehicles are now required to make use of electronic logging devices (EDLP) to record duty status information. The digitally connected devices can be integrated into fleet management platforms to enable all data captured to become part of the decision-making workflow. Managers can easily track driver hours and see when drivers are nearing required rest periods.
Routing: Without accurate data, it’s impossible to know why a particular delivery is taking longer than anticipated, why certain routes are consistently problematic or if an unexpected obstacle is hindering a fleet vehicle’s progress. Having a near real-time picture of weather, traffic or even shortcuts at your fingertips can help you save time, improve customer service, reduce fuel costs and increase efficiency. In turn, this helps organizations improve their ability to manage complex networks of people who are moving everyday all over the country.
Big data can benefit fleets, but only if it’s used with a fleet management solution that’s designed for simplicity. When it comes to fleet management, different jobs require different areas of responsibility and different data. For example, an equipment manager might be interested in day-to-day utilization of vehicles or powered and nonpowered assets, while a transportation executive might prefer to view overall company and industry trends that occur over several weeks, months or years.
That’s why it’s important for organizations to look for fleet management systems that are equipped to handle large amounts of varied data. Top vendors provide dashboard filters for an easy way to slice information in a manner that makes it relevant and actionable.
Technology with filtering features can make it easier to review data, especially for the purposes of aggregation:
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