Why Fleets Should Partner with a Telematics Provider
On the face of it, implementing Electronic Logbook software is a daunting challenge, but there is a relatively simple solution that can make complying with the ELD mandate much easier: partnering with a Telematics provider.
Integrating Electronic Logbooks and Telematics systems creates a big picture approach to fleet data. This is particularly the case with functions such as a driver vehicle inspection report (DVIR) system, helping to keep even more detailed records and increase efficiency when it comes to maintenance. For safety, Telematics can help monitor driver behavior and identify risky behavior before an incident occurs.
There are numerous changes facing fleets as they prepare to comply with the ELD mandate, not the least of which is choosing an Electronic Logging Device (ELD). Adding urgency to the need to comply with the mandate is the looming December 18, 2017, deadline when fleets will be required to have either an automatic onboard recording device (AOBRD) or ELD installed in their vehicles.
It Saves Time
Already Use Telematics?
For fleets that already have a Telematics partner, turning to them is obvious. Many offer ELD and are prepared to offer a proven solution to fleets ahead of the December deadline.
Turning to an existing partner makes sense because it will save fleets time in implementing ELD. For many providers adding one of these devices to an existing Telematics account is relatively simple. Time is also saved because the Telematics provider is already familiar with the fleet, its vehicles, and operations, so there is less time needed in building a new relationship with a provider.
I'm New Here
This is a great time to consider adding Telematics in addition to Electronic Logbook software. Telematics provides fleets powerful tools to improve the bottom line from routing to anti-idling to monitoring reckless driving. They are used to scaling up implementation quickly and can guide fleet managers through all the issues related to ELD compliance.
Implementation of both Telematics and an Electronic Logbook software is simple, often just requiring the Telematics provider—if its system is compatible with the built-in device—to simply “turn on” the Telematics capability.
It Improves Efficiency
Fleets that add ELD to their existing Telematics platform will see several immediate benefits.
First, training will be streamlined since the ELD device is generally built on the same platform, meaning that function and functionality are usually the same or very similar.
Second and, perhaps, most important is the benefit of data integration. Whether it’s an existing or new fleet user, having data flowing through one stream is crucial for today’s data-driven environment.
Why Data Integration Matters
Data integration is a hallmark of today’s “Big Data” approach. Having data siloed in different systems across the enterprise is inefficient and often requires more time to process and analyze, adding to the fleet’s budget and impacting the company’s bottom line.
Integrating ELD and Telematics systems creates a big picture approach to fleet data, keeping the fleet in compliance and aiding efficiency. This is particularly the case with functions such as a driver vehicle inspection report (DVIR) system, helping to keep even more detailed records and increase efficiency when it comes to maintenance.
For safety, Telematics can help monitor driver behavior and identify risky behavior before an incident occurs, saving company dollars that would be lost if a vehicle or driver is damaged or injured, a potentially costly lawsuit, and negative publicity that could damage the company’s brand.
A Matter of Compliance
Telematics providers have been preparing for the ELD mandate deadline as diligently as most fleets.
They’re Fleet Experts
Since they are experts in fleet operations, they are prepared to help fleets stay in compliance by supporting their products and making sure that they are up-to-date and meet Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) technical requirements.
They Understand How to Support Products
As software experts, they know the importance of providing ongoing updates to their product to ensure their customers meet FMCSA compliance. If there are changes to the rules down the line, they are able to adjust their products to fit what customers require.
They React Quickly
Because Telematics providers are used to working with fleets and understand the importance of following FMCSA rules, they have the mechanisms in place to cope with individual or large-scale technical issues or emergencies that may occur.
They Supply Technical & Customer Support
On a day-to-day level, Telematics providers should support their products by providing ELD-support specialists to troubleshoot any questions from users and offer ongoing training where and when necessary.
A Practical Solution
There is a practical reason why fleets should consider partnering with a Telematics provider when implementing an ELD and it’s found in the FMCSA ELD mandate.
Among its requirements, in order to transmit Hours of Service (HOS) data, fleets must either use Bluetooth and USB2.0 technology or a Telematics device. Partnering with a Telematics provider will allow fleets to quickly meet an important provision of the ELD mandate while reaping the benefits of faster implementation, data integration, and equipment support.
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