Telematics are a well-established means for recording data about vehicles. Principally, their location and how long they have taken to get there. However, there is a growing understanding that as a sophisticated, versatile technology, telematics can be more widely applied to fleet management.
How Do Telematics Work?
“Telematics are a means of monitoring a vehicle,” explains Alan Locke of AYCEN Group, specialists in servicing fleet vehicles. “The combination of GPS and on-board diagnostics means that the amount of data available at any given time is now considerable and quite detailed.”
Formula One teams, for example, have been using telematics for years to help with on-track tactics. Monitoring mapping alongside vehicle behaviour, and including live, connected car features, telematics offers a comprehensive means of keeping track.
“You can send data back and forth between a vehicle and a central management system,” Alan observes, “which has important implications for how fleet management evolves.”
The Continuing Evolution of Fleet Management
Telematics have now become much more than recording tools for vehicles. As the technology’s sophistication has increased, so it has offered greater opportunities for fleet managers to fully integrate their operations.
“The presence of telematics, from a privacy viewpoint, is increasingly being accepted, “Alan remarks. “This makes it that much easier to bring them into play for fleet management.”
There are benefits in being able to analyse routes and journey times, with a view to modifying them to save money.
“Maintaining margins is critical with fleet management so anything that can improve operational efficiency is going to be welcome”
Alan Locke, AYCEN Group
Telematics also indicate how vehicles are driven and help identify the reasons of breakdown. This means they can help inform driver training as well as reassure insurers when it comes to demonstrating safety standards, to premium costs.
“There are wider implications for business too,” Alan points out. “Telematics enables increased fleet performance and, therefore, enhances overall business efficiency.”
“As telematics technology evolves and becomes more widely applied, it is poised to be at the forefront how commercial vehicle fleets are managed, and how fleets compete in business”
Alan Locke, AYCEN Group
Single data and control centres may revolutionise fleet management. And while there are individual concerns over driver privacy, the efficiency benefits will be what drives the spread and adoption of telematics.
Business Aspects Magazine acknowledges Alan Locke’s expertise and appreciates his contribution to this article.