Identifying areas for change management at the beginning of a transition allows for greater integration, management buy-in, and a higher chance of a successful outcome. This approach allows stakeholders to be identified early, and creates a greater understanding of how the change organizer would affect them and how they can use the organizer for best results.
One way to identify areas for change is to analyze the vehicle fleet activity from insights gained with telematics data. Telematics systems can highlight which areas of the fleet may require change or improvement, and if correctly managed can assist with achieving overall performance improvements and can help to improve financial savings. Case studies have shown that various operational cost savings, like Star Towing reducing fuel costs by 30%, can be achievable within the first 12 months when using telematics, with possible returns on investment coming as early as the first four to six months. However, the positive impact of telematics goes beyond the fleet alone, reaching across a number of business functions.
Management, Sales, Finance, IT, and HR all benefit from the information gathered through telematics systems. Include these stakeholders at the beginning of a project and you will enable them to have a view on the type and quantity of information that they require to bring about improvements in their own functional areas. Identifying the stakeholder requirements early can give a better understanding of the capabilities and limitations of telematics from the outset, which in turn allows for the better management of expectations.
A management review – in particular fleet management practices – ensures that the correct structure, roles and responsibilities are in place to manage processes and present what can be an exhaustive amount of data. The use of a white paper like Establish the Business Case for Fleet Management Technology will outline how and why telematics implementation is needed, highlighting any new roles, responsibilities and reporting procedures that have been identified during the review process.
A trial period is an ideal time to assess and analyze the requirement. Planned trials allow you to look at the impact on fleet activities, and make sure they measure against operational and financial output. The trial period also enables potential telematics customers to review their own requirements, ensuring that the system and support offered is going to meet their expectations.
The benefits to commercial vehicle fleets that have telematics solutions installed are well known. Researching commercial fleet benchmarking is an excellent starting point for the introduction of such a system. The benefits to the company, employee and customer are well-documented and commercial fleet best practice can be analyzed and implemented across the business functions.
It is important for the Finance team to be involved from the beginning of a change project. Partnering with Operations from the start enables Finance to understand the operational benefits, while allowing it to identify and track the financial benefits. Analyzing financial data and comparing it against operational telematics data quickly shows where improvements and changes can be made.
An area where telematics can be used jointly between Finance, Operations and HR is the impact on reducing risk and insurance costs. These two key areas can help to demonstrate any existing improvement in driving standards and fleet management. This type of system can help you to put your company in a stronger position to work with insurance companies and brokers to lower premiums, when there was a tangible reduction in fleet risk through improvement and change in management structures and techniques.
IT staff play an important part in the introduction of telematics as a system. With open API reporting being offered by some vendors, systems can be integrated in a far more efficient manner and lead to partnerships with system providers, benefitting the company and, ultimately, the customer. IT is integral to a systems approach to telematics and makes an ideal first point of contact for telematics fault finding. A nominated point of contact within the IT department is ideal for giving immediate telematics support in house.
Human Resources can use the data to assess the impact of driving styles on individuals, identify areas for training, and use this to support the duty of care that companies have to all their employees.
The key to introducing a change program is to identify who would be the lead. Who would be responsible for communicating what, where, when, why and how it all takes place? Will it be a person, a team or a department?
This is an important decision, as the changes identified will impact all employees and, to a certain extent, customers. Whoever the lead is, they must be senior enough within the organization to be able to implement strategy, make decisions and give leadership and management to the project team. This approach allows best practice to be shared internally across departments and functions. See our Ten Step Guide to Change Management to ensure a seamless transition and avoid driver objections.
As we can see, telematics has an effect on a number of business areas and is an ideal enabler for change and improvement to take place.