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PinPoint GPS Fleet Tracking Journal: Utility Services Contractor

August 14, 2013 - by PinPoint

PINPOINT JOURNAL BY VINCE ARONE 

CASE STUDY: Safety and Improved Customer Support

INDUSTRY: Utility Services Contractor

 

Problem: This organization was looking at Fleet tracking for some time to provide “visibility” of its high value fleet as well as being able to provide current updates to customers and supervisors of its staff. The client wanted better understanding of its fleets operation and looked to better meet its customers SLA (Service level agreement)

  • PinPoint GPS devices were installed in nearly 100 fleet vehicles;
  • Minute by minute location was available to dispatch and service managers- safety of the drivers and heavy equipment was known at all time
  • The client was able to quickly defend a drivers arrival and departure and satisfy an urgent request
  • Fleet utilization reports were able to determine which vehicles were used most in a given month and better plan for subsequent routing
  • Daily Start and End times were easily provided to supervisors for effective record keeping

Results: Clear visibility of all its drivers; supervisors are able to ensure all drivers return safely from each job

 

 


 


About the Author: Vince Arone

Vince, one of the founders of PinPoint, is a Professional Engineer of Ontario with MBA from Schulich School of Business at York U. Vince has over 15 years of sales and management experience in multi-national telecommunication companies such as Ericsson, Siemens and Lucent. He also spent the last 5 years working within the Telematics industry.
 

 

Taxis And GPS: A Match Made In Heaven

- by PinPoint

Anyone using a taxi in our days knows: no serious taxi business works without a GPS tracking system anymore. There are very serious reasons for that. The GPS tracking system actually seems to be the taxi businesses soul mate, as if they had been made for each other. Before the GPS tracking systems taxis had a hard time communicating with each other and their central control. Radios were most often used, since phones only recently became hands free and mobile.

Before those the taxis had to hurdle at certain places, hoping that an adjacent busy street will bring customers. People who needed an emergency taxi, but lived in some little known area, had to order these via phone and wait a long time for their car to arrive.

The calls made to the drivers actually added many problems to an already difficult business niche. Radios were constantly turned on, causing a lot of annoying noise due to all the contracts being sent out continuously. Phone calls were too hazardous for most drivers, as well as too expensive for the business. Receiving a call via radio or phone also added the problem that one hand left the driver’s wheel for a while, increasing the risk of car accidents exponentially whenever a call was received.

The central control had to employ a horde of calling ladies or gentlemen, who had to receive the contracts and find a suitable taxi to carry them out. This suitability was very hard to determine, since the only way to know where the vehicles of the fleet were positioned was by calling and asking them. Usually the call would be made to all taxis, asking the driver closest to the destination to answer and take the contract.

This caused both competitions among drivers who both wanted the same contract and laziness by those who were close but didn’t want to bother. Idle driving was at an all time high, since it was near impossible to determine where the cars were and who they were carrying. Drivers used their taxis for grocery shopping, to pick up kids from school and even to take small vacations. All that happened with the businesses gas money of course.

Taxi businesses were thankfully profitable nonetheless, but the profits were damped by bad planning and control. Contracts were quickly lost or a better competitor or a luckier one and the taxi business that had the most cars was usually the best and most reliable to get the job done, creating a monopoly in the market.

All this ended when GPS tracking systems hit the market a few years ago. For the first time central control could actually see all its vehicles on a map, live. This meant that the business had no longer need to rely on its driver’s reliability and desire to work. The car closest to each destination could be easily determined and picked for the contract when there were no clients in it. A single call to a specific car was enough to get every job done.

Another of the GPS tracking system’s immense benefits to the taxi industry was that the taxi drivers could now rely on a computer driven and thus highly accurate GPS system to guide them to their destinations via the fastest route. No longer was there need to grab a map from the glove compartment or to ask central control or the client for directions. This lifted the prestige of the driver, as he no longer got into the difficult position of needing to ask help doing his or her job. Taxi drivers with the new GPS tool could work with confidence and reliability.

One of the biggest problems of taxi fleets is that taxis often do not obey the driving laws as much as the average car. To increase profit taxi drivers often speed drive and cross red lights, hoping to earn that little extra by running from one destination to the next in the most extreme way possible. This harms both the taxi business’s reputation and can potentially harm the driver and the client. It is safe to say that a taxi business that kills its driver and a client will soon have to close down, because of irreparably damaged reputation. The GPS tracking system is a good way to try and prevent something like that from happening. With the GPS tracking system the central control can monitor driving speed and have alarm ring when top allowed speeds are surpassed.

Conclusion

Any taxi business that doesn’t yet have a GPS tracking business is working on borrowed time. Profits and reliability is so vastly improved by the system that no taxi business can hope to be competitive without one. Clients trust taxi businesses with GPS tracking systems better, because the drivers seem more knowledgeable about the streets, the contracts are picked up faster and the speed limits are being respected. GPS tracking systems and taxi businesses surely are a match made in heaven from the moment they hit the market until now. Control your fleet, pick up clients the fastest and challenge your drivers to be the best via the GPS tracking system.

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