A fleet management system is a software that has the functionality to use GPS tracking to keep track of the locations of all your cars. If you own a fleet of cars or trucks, such as a logistics shipping company, a fleet management system is often used to keep track of the delivery of orders and the time taken by each driver to deliver a package.
A fleet management system is also used in ride sharing apps like Grab or Uber. The mobile devices of individual drivers are used as GPS tracking devices to keep track of their locations which allows Grab or Uber to find customers the nearest drivers.
But how does a fleet management system help a business to be more profitable? Would a business be able to be as efficient without fleet management software?
The challenge of doing everything by hand
If you’re a small business with one or two trucks, you may be able to get away by keeping track of deliveries and drivers in an Excel document. It’s like with accounting. There’re softwares like Xero but a lot of people (especially small business owners) used to do accounting by hand in Excel or in a physical ledger.
The problem is scale. When you have too many accounting transactions or trucks and deliveries to make, you won’t be able to keep track of everything yourself.
You can try to scale by hiring someone to do data entry. But that leaves you prone to human error which could result in costly mistakes if customers end up cancelling their orders or leaving negative reviews due to a late package.
Think about how stressful it would be for Grab if there was a team of admin staff keeping track of the available drivers and riders. How would they be able to manage matching drivers and riders during peak hours in Orchard?
A fleet management system gives you access to traffic conditions
Google Maps is commonly used by consumers to find directions and to get from place to place. Google Maps also has an API, which is an endpoint for developers (of fleet management software) to use.
The Google Maps API allows the fleet management software to find the quickest route from Orchard to Marine Parade, for example, and give you an accurate time for arrival. If there’s traffic and it takes an hour to get to Marine Parade, your fleet management software will notify you automatically and you can even choose to charge customers a higher fare since more time is spent on the road!
You wouldn’t be able to do this without a fleet management system since you wouldn’t be able to access the Google Maps API.