Sadly, cargo theft is a growing issue, and if you’re a busy fleet manager, you may have little time to do the research to make a decision on how to keep your vehicles and their cargo safe with fleet tracking systems. Here, we have done the research for you, and we offer advice on what you need to know about when choosing a fleet tracker for your business.
What’s GPS Tracking And How Can it Help?
GPS is a technology that allows a user to easily see where a tracker is located, and it can follow a moving tracker across the country or even the world. The tracking device itself is fitted to the vehicle and the sim card inside the tracker stores the information of the tracker’s movement. A web-based interface then allows someone to access the tracking information of that vehicle in real-time.
Most fleet managers choose GPS trackers in order to keep their cargo secure. These days, there is a real risk to high value and easily moveable freight, with cargo theft reportedly increasing 8 percent between 2017-18 If a fleet manager tracking a vehicle saw an unscheduled stop or a deviation from the agreed routings, then he or she could then get in contact with the driver, or follow the security protocol for such events and hopefully avoid a theft.
There are, however, other benefits. GPS fleet trackers allow for fleet managers to give customers real-time information on where their cargo is, and update them if there are any delays on the route such as heavy traffic, road closures etc. They can also keep an eye on driver’s speeds and driving habits, allowing them to take action immediately if they feel a driver is speeding or deviating from agreed routes or taking unscheduled stops. If you run a fleet of security patrols, you can check whether your patrols are missing out stops, which is a common problem in the security industry. If you run a fleet of work vans, then you might be able to check whether any moonlighting is going on if you’re tracking the vehicle ‘out of hours’.
Installing a GPS tracker to a vehicle can usually be done on your premises, but you may be able to get the entire fleet fitted at once more cheaply. It’s a quick job and depending on the trackers you have chosen and the number of vehicles in your fleet, it might be worth getting them done in bulk as you may secure a discount for doing so.
Choosing Your Tracker
Before choosing your tracker, it’s important to ask yourself several questions to get an idea of what you really want out of the fleet tracking system. Questions such as the size of your fleet to be fitted and the budget available will help narrow down your options, but then you might need to look at how you want to be alerted and for what. Some businesses allow their drivers to largely choose their own routes for deliveries, but others prefer to know the exact route and would prefer a route deviation alert if a vehicle goes off the specified route. Some businesses may want to focus on driver habits and behaviour, and some may prefer an easy interface that doesn’t require much technical knowhow to set up and use.
Choosing your tracker is made easier if you contact a company that has the knowledge and experience to know what would suit your budget and your needs best. Some things you may not have considered when choosing a tracker could be whether you can move a tracker from vehicle to vehicle, or whether you can track unauthorised use of a vehicle. If you have a range of different vehicles types, such as motorbikes, cars, and lorries, can your trackers be adapted to each type of vehicle? Talking this over with an experienced advisor can help not only answer the questions you have already but bring up new things you might not have thought of before.
The Non- Negotiable
Getting the most out of your fleet tracker means there are some things that you should not compromise on. Good customer service and after-sales support is one thing. After all, if you’re spending a good amount of money on trackers, you need to get the most out of all the features you have.
Here at Tag Systems, we not only have the knowledge and experience to help you choose the trackers that offer the most benefit for your budget, but we offer 20 years of experience in GPS tracking. Why not get in touch for a free consultation to find out how GPS tracking could benefit your fleet.