Is reporting important? Routing, dispatching, and communicating with your drivers are major components of the fleet management function – and the key criteria for many when purchasing a telematics, dispatch or business software system. But reporting capabilities can be equally important – and should be one of your main benchmarks when evaluating your technology strategy.
Accurate reporting can save time and money, and in many cases clear up any discrepancies or disputes, ensuring you bill and get paid for all of the work that you do.
Look for solutions that offer real-time visibility into your fleet: where are my drivers; what are they doing; how is their driving? And ideally, you should be able to log on no matter where you are. TomTom Telematics customers enjoy real-time maps that show the location and traffic around each one of their vehicles, Web-based access to maps and reports, and the ability to spot trends and take action. With all of this information at their fingertips, they can improve performance in three key areas.
More Accurate Billing Reporting
The right telematics system can tell you exactly – to the minute – when an employee starts and finishes a job. Reports on trips, hours and orders help you assess productivity and target areas where there’s room for improvement.
With the right reporting capabilities, you can: improve scheduling by analyzing orders, standstill time, trip time and distance traveled; use records of time spent with customers and time spent on the road to maximize billable time; compare individual and group performance to optimize resource allocation and planning.
According to Mike Campisano, general manager of Mr. C Refrigeration in Louisville, Kentucky, adding a telematics system instantly improved the effectiveness of their billing and payroll procedures. “Our guys clock in and out using the TomTom device in their truck, so we know when they start their day, and we know exactly how long they spend at the customer site.” As a result, both customer billing and payroll are based on exact time spent on the job. “We’re not losing $20, $30 or more on a job anymore because the technician doesn’t remember exactly when he got there.”
Improved Customer Communications with Reporting
Telematics systems can also help resolve customer disputes – with a real-time electronic record of your vehicles’ activities, you can answer any questions about arrival times and provide detail about the services you are providing. With the right data, you can see if your drivers are arriving on time and analyze their reliability and responsiveness of your service, as well as provide job-by-job insight into time spent driving and time spent with customers.
A record of orders and arrival times shows how reliable your service is — and you can share it with your customers.
In 2011, Zores Towing won a contract with City of Indianapolis Police Department (IPD), significantly increasing call volume. As part of the agreement, Zores was required to respond to any calls from the IPD within 20 minutes, or incur fines and a contract review. According to IT Manager David Schroeder, “In the beginning, the police department was telling us three or four times a week that we didn’t make the 20 minute window. With TomTom WEBFLEET we were able to show them that we did – and saved ourselves quite a bit of money by not having to pay fines.”
Effective Business Management Reporting
With multiple vehicles on the road, being able to slice and dice data to get the information you need is important. Otherwise, you may find yourself wading through multiple reports, just trying to get the one piece of information you need. Look for a telematics system that allows you to customize reports and call up information when you need it. With the right data, you can handle customer inquiries, dispatch the right driver, and plan your business strategy effectively by using real-time data. For more information on the benefits of reporting, check out our best practice guide on how to boost productivity for your business.
You can only manage what you can measure. With the right telematics system, you should be able to measure everything from productivity to costs, to carbon emissions to driver behavior. Having a clear picture of all of these factors – and being able to slice and dice data as you need it, can help you make smarter business decisions.
You can learn more about TomTom Telematics’ WEBFLEET reporting capabilities here.
And for more information about other ways telematics can influence your business, check out Telematics: Not Just for Dispatchers.