Do you run a logistics company and are constantly looking for ways to make your fleet operate more efficiently? Or perhaps you want to start an organization in another line of work, such as sales, building, or healthcare, and need to create an affordable fleet setup as a result?
No matter your area of expertise, if you have multiple vehicles operating in your business, stay up-to-date on how technology is making it cheaper and easier to get ahead. Technology is having many impacts on logistics-based teams right now, including the following five key factors.
Insights into Driver Behavior
For starters, tech tools are handy when it comes to learning about and understanding driver behavior. Use software to monitor things like the speeds of drivers, if workers break limits or other road rules, and if there is more stopping and starting (a big fuel guzzler) than necessary.
Technology also makes it simpler for companies in the logistics arena to keep a close eye on the number of hours each driver works. With strict legalities around this these days, and the safety of not just drivers but also other people, vehicles, goods, animals, etc. on the line, it’s important for employees to stick to set hours. Use software such as feature-rich ELD devices to keep your business compliant and stop workers from burning out or getting into accidents.
More Efficient Routing
A way for companies to save money, time, driver energy, and the environment to boot is to improve the routing vehicles take for their deliveries and pickups. Today, state-of-the-art GPS software and other tech tools ensure drivers take efficient paths to each destination. This equals faster turnaround times for jobs, less fuel consumption, fewer vehicle miles, and less air and noise pollution. In turn, a win-win situation arises for companies, drivers, consumers, and the environment.
Software programs allow businesses/drivers to plan out the quickest and most efficient routes for jobs in advance, but they provide another benefit. Once en route, drivers can also be alerted to potential holdups that could be an issue, and be re-routed to avoid roadworks, traffic accidents, street closures, and other delay-causing changes along the route.
Predictive Vehicle Maintenance
For logistics businesses to make the best profits possible each year, they need to save money on the fleets they run. Cost cuts can happen at the buying stage, but it’s also necessary for vehicles to be taken care of over time, so they keep running efficiently for as long as possible. Thankfully, today, firms can use technology, by way of predictive maintenance tools, to analyze performance.
Software now analyzes vehicles remotely, particularly paying attention to things like sensor data and equipment monitoring. From there, it’s easier to tell when vehicles require some form of maintenance or repairs. When vehicles are worked on before small issues turn into big ones, this saves money, reduces downtime, and increases business reliability and customer trust.
To keep customers happy, logistics firms must find ways to provide more information to customers about the status of pickups and deliveries. Consumer expectations have changed over the past decade, meaning people now have high expectations about the amount of data they can access. Clients want to be able to track shipments from start to finish, rather than waiting around wondering when a delivery will occur or if there are any issues in transit.
Satisfy your customers by using vehicle and parcel tracking software that gives people a good idea of estimated delivery dates (and times where possible). It also allows drivers, warehouses, offices, and vehicles to communicate more effectively between each other and gives firms access to customizable reporting. Information is relayed and updated in real time, and bottlenecks are minimized.
Monitor and manage shipments using GPS systems and other tools that track a variety of data along the logistics pipeline. You’ll not only keep consumers up-to-date but also enjoy cost savings, too. You won’t need so many customer service staff on hand to handle queries and complaints, as people can get the information they need online, via tracking systems. Plus, when changes to deliveries arise, you can have automated messages sent out to alert clients ASAP.
Logistics firms have a lot of plates to spin in the air to make a profit and build a reputation as reliable, efficient freight forwarders. However, by incorporating technological tools into the mix, it’s easier and more affordable than ever to make this constant juggle work.