A GPS fleet tracking system, sometimes referred to as fleet tracking technology, collects location-based data from company vehicles and uses it to give businesses full visibility of their fleet’s whereabout and events, with just one glance.
GPS fleet tracking systems also offer customisable notifications that can be set up based on vehicle movements.
This data is then viewed through a fleet tracking software.
Here is what can you do with a GPS fleet tracking software:
- See which fleet vehicles are where
- Check the distances of fleet vehicles to a designated address
- Find out which vehicle is closest to an address
- Get alerted when a vehicle moves outside a certain area and/or timeframe (e.g. when a vehicle leaves the office outside of business hours)
To find out the basics of a GPS Fleet Tracker, how it can save you money and how to choose the right provider, make sure to download our Beginners Guide:
What makes a ‘good’ GPS fleet tracking system?
Firstly, it’s extremely important that the GPS fleet tracker provides the solutions you are looking for. You can find examples of solutions in this section.
The following factors are also vital:
- Easy-to-use hardware and software
- So many GPS fleet trackers are designed for large companies with a lot of fleet resources at hand. It is extremely important to find a GPS fleet tracking system that can be used by anyone, so you never have any issues.
- Good customer service
- Particularly for smaller companies, this point is vital. Issues happen and if you have no one to speak to at the GPS fleet tracking company then those issues can never be resolved. Plus, if they can not help you manage the GPS fleet tracker well, then your success with their hardware is uncertain.
- Fair and flexible pricing
- Some customers want a monthly contract, others want a longer contract that might be less expensive. Make sure you find a provider that can offer the price plan you need, without any hidden costs (like installation fees).
Jump to: FAQs on GPS Fleet Tracking
7 Solutions A GPS Fleet Tracker Can Offer UK Businesses
GPS fleet trackers have brought a much-needed change for British businesses. A GPS fleet tracker makes use of satellite systems to monitor the exact location of cars and the personnel they carry. This technology is designed in a way that it continually collects data from your entire fleet of vehicles.
Here are 7 solutions that come with installing a GPS fleet tracker:
1. Prevent vehicle misuse and theft
Want to be fully in charge of your fleet, keep track of how your employees operate, and be notified of any potential unauthorised use? A GPS fleet tracker is all you need, and there are many reasons why that’s so. For starters, you’ll ensure all the company vehicles are at the right places and access essential GPS information of their whereabouts.
Besides, you can set customised notifications that let you know when vehicles leave the business premises outside working hours. With all this data, it’s easy to be ahead of events, and you can also give it to the authorities if the worst happens.
2. Locate the right drivers with GPS fleet trackers
Besides protecting your vehicle from vandalism and misuse, a GPS fleet tracker can help you locate your nearest vehicles and dispatch them to deliver packages more efficiently. It brings forth the most accurate real-time tracking in the industry, refreshing after every 20 seconds.
This data can help you pinpoint customer addresses and locate the right drivers for the task. The GPS tracking software also automatically calculates distances and travel times, helping you make prompt decisions.
3. Improve customer service
Customised notifications alert you whenever the vehicles arrive or leave a site and when they’re ready for the next task. So, a GPS fleet tracker allows a quicker turnaround time.
And since you can respond to jobs more efficiently, you get to serve more customers in a single day. GPS tracking also enables you to give your customers real-time data on the drivers’ ETAs without disturbing them on the road.
For further information see our case study below.
4. GPS fleet trackers and fuel cost reductions
As fuel prices keep rising, it’s more essential than ever to optimise fuel usage. One of the easiest ways to reduce your vehicles’ fuel consumption is by keeping detailed records of their mileage. That’s where a GPS fleet tracker comes in.
A fleet tracking software helps you reduce your yearly fleet mileage consumption. With a GPS fleet tracker, you’ll:
- Save on fuel costs
- Reduce your CO2 emissions
- Optimise routes
- Minimise the number of times cars are out for maintenance checks
5. Keep your fleet secure
On average, vehicle theft costs businesses £16,000 every year. How can you protect yourself from those costs? It’s pretty straightforward with GPS fleet trackers.
Businesses that can always keep track of their fleet can easily spot when one of their vehicles is not where it should be. And if you can’t always be looking at where your vehicles are, simply set up custom notifications on your GPS fleet tracker. That way you’ll always be alerted when a fleet vehicle leaves a certain area, at a certain time.
For example, your GPS fleet tracker can let you know whenever a vehicle leaves the premises, outside of business hours.
If you do suspect suspicious activity, simply pass on the vehicle’s live location to the authorities!
6. GPS fleet trackers give you a better operational overview
GPS fleet tracking allows you to:
- Find out where all your drivers are
- Give customers accurate ETAs
- See which vehicles are on the road and which are available for the next job
- Pinpoint which driver is closest to an appointment
- Gain access to automated records, with timestamps
- Prove to customers your drivers were at an appointment, even if the customer was not
- Keep track of the appointment times
7. Reduce your carbon footprint
With customers and businesses both paying more attention to their carbon footprint, it’s a huge bonus that companies can cut their emissions with GPS fleet tracking.
As outlined above, fleet GPS tracking helps cut down your business’s mileage and fuel consumption. As a result, it also reduces your carbon footprint!
How UK Businesses Can Choose the Right GPS Fleet Tracker?
With hundreds of fleet tracking companies out there in the UK, choosing one that’s right for you can be a daunting process. But don’t worry, here are tips to help you make an informed decision.
1. Avoid hidden costs
A deal from a fleet tracking company that seems cheaper than expected often becomes expensive in the long term. That’s why it’s wise to watch out for providers that offer contracts without including other costs like service calls, shipping costs, and installation fees.
2. Choose flexibility on price plans
For you to get a suitable GPS fleet tracker provider, opt for one that gives you a variety of payment plans to choose from. That way, you can settle for a subscription that best suits your business needs.
3. Choose a user-friendly GPS fleet tracking software
Although most of the fleet tracking technologies work well, some of them are way too complicated. So, always request a product demo before purchasing a GPS fleet tracker.
Investing in a GPS fleet tracker is the best way to optimise your fleet and streamline your workflow. Contact us today to learn more about how our GPS tracking software can help you secure your fleet and help exceed your customers’ expectations.
Start by downloading Vimcar’s GPS fleet tracking brochure and find out how about its price flexibility, user-friendliness and zero hidden costs:
4. Get GPS fleet tracking technology that works well
A lot GPS fleet tracking tech is either old (and hardly ever updated) or is simply not designed to be easy-to-use. Before buying the fleet tracker, make sure you do a product demo so you know you’ll be able to easily use the trackers on a day-to-day basis.
Make sure, as well, to ask the provider how often they update their technology. If the provider does not update the software at least 4 times a year, that’s a big clue as to how tech-driven they really are – and how accurate their fleet GPS tracking really is!
Real-Time Fleet Tracking
Managers and decision-makers often need to alter schedules, manage driver-performance and redistribute assets to maximise efficiency and control costs. And this is only possible with real-time fleet tracking.
A passive system stores all of the data in the tracking device. This data must be uploaded to a server manually – often with a cable. Crucially, this passive type of tracker doesn’t allow decision-makers to react to what’s happening at any given moment.
A GPS fleet tracker, however, transmits the data continually – via satellite or mobile networks. While these systems are more expensive than passive options, they pay for themselves in the form of improved operational efficiency.
Case Study: Customer Appointments Before & After GPS Fleet Trackers
Before GPS fleet trackers
- You get a call from a client. They say your driver is late and want an update on where your driver is. You try and call the driver, but they can’t pick up. They’re in the car, driving.
- Having not been able to communicate with your driver and specify an ETA, your client has no idea when the driver will arrive. Fed up and not willing to wait around indefinitely, your client decides they’ll arrange a last-minute meeting with one of their business partners.
- When the driver arrives at the appointment they have multiple missed calls from you and no client present to meet them.
- Your driver is left hanging around in their car, waiting for your client to eventually finish their meeting. Only then can your driver complete the job.
After GPS fleet trackers
- Having installed a fleet tracker into your fleet, you have a large screen in your office displaying all your vehicles’ locations at all times. You and your team can see one of your drivers is still 6 miles away from an appointment that starts in 1 minute.
- You apologise to your client and inform them that the driver is 6 miles away and will be there in 5 minutes.
- Your client, happy to be kept in the loop, makes sure they’re ready to meet the driver when he arrives. The job is completed efficiently and your driver is able to move on to their next task without delay.
Installing fleet trackers makes appointments with customers that simple! GPS fleet trackers save everybody’s time and money, slash your driver’s turnaround time and help you deliver a first-class service to your customers.
FAQs on GPS fleet tracking
Are there any GPS Fleet trackers without monthly fees?
Yes, but they are not worth buying. While subscription-free GPS fleet trackers may seem like the best deal ever, they may end up costing you a lot of time, money and energy.
Purchasing a subscription-free car tracker means you’ll have to replace the car tracker if it becomes outdated. Additionally, such GPS Fleet trackers come with limited features or even substandard features. When you experience difficulties when using the subscription-free tracker, you’ll have to find your way of solving the problem. Such car trackers may lack customer service or may have unreliable one.
Can you track someone’s car without them knowing?
No. If you have to track someone’s car, they must be aware that they’re being tracked. The information collected should be treated as personal. Monitoring someone’s vehicle without them knowing would mean you’re illegally accessing someone’s personal data. This is going against the regulations set by the data protection act 1998, and you’d end up in legal problems.
How can I track my truck with a GPS fleet tracker?
You can track your track the same way as with a GPS fleet tracker. It will help if you buy Vimcar’s Box (instead of the Dongle) because you can be sure it fits any truck. With Vimcar Fitted Box, you can fix the box onto your truck’s battery be sure that it will always be hidden and tamperproof.
Installing a GPS fleet tracker on your truck will come in handy in several ways. Using a GPS fleet tracker will help optimize your trucks and streamline workflow if you’re managing multiple trucks. You’ll improve your company’s productivity, lower fuel charges, and improve customer services. And the good thing is, your trucks will remain safe and secure in case of mishandling or theft.
How do I track a fleet vehicle?
The best way to track a fleet vehicle is with a GPS fleet tracker. And to get more information on whether or not your vehicle is being driven efficiently, ensure you invest in Driving Style Analysis (DSA). With a DSA, you can monitor your fleet drivers to learn about their driving habits. A DSA software helps you rank your drivers in a score between 0 and 100. As a fleet manager, you can use the score to advise drivers who score the lowest on good driving habits. In the end, they may improve their driving habits, which will benefit your fleet company in the long run.
Components Of A GPS Fleet Tracker
1. The tracking device
This is the GPS fleet tracking device that receives signals from GNSS. This data-capture device is fitted to each fleet vehicle. Most modern devices should take only a few minutes to install and do not require trips to the garage.
The GPS device collects pertinent data in real-time and sends it to a central server. The most important information collected is usually the vehicle’s various locations, routes, speeds and direction. However, advanced GPS devices are designed to collect additional data, beyond GPS data, like on fuel consumption, tyre pressure, maintenance issues and driving style.
2. The tracking server
The tracking server is the centralised system that receives information from the GPS fleet tracking device through mobile networks. Tracking servers have vast amounts of memory enabling them to store the data sent from various tracking devices. The server is located remotely, and it can only be accessed by approved authorisation. The way in which this data is extracted is through a GPS fleet tracking software.
3. The tracking software
A tracking software is what the end user (like the manager of a fleet) actually ends up interacting with. This user interface allows key personnel to easily read data, statistics and reports. Sophisticated fleet software now allows businesses to use the information collected from the GPS fleet tracking device to help save their fleet time, money and hassle and help improve customer service.
Key Features of UK GPS Fleet Trackers
The latest GPS fleet trackers include a user interface with map and street views. This allows the user to ascertain the exact location of a particular vehicle, as well as the vehicle’s starting point and the route it took. This function is very useful when last-minute delivery requests come in. The user can give the job to the driver who’s closest to the pickup location.
Geofencing involves setting a virtual boundary around a defined location. When a mobile device or tracker enters or exits this boundary, a signal is sent to a central location. The signal is often sent in the form of a message – accessed via the user interface. But geofencing notifications can also be sent via text message, email and push notification.
Geofencing is a good way to ensure drivers stay within their allotted delivery territory. The user can modify boundaries and driver groups at any time.
3. Route optimisation
The single biggest costs incurred by any fleet operator is usually fuel. An effective GPS fleet tracker conserves fuel and drives efficiency by calculating the optimum route in real-time. Based on the driver’s current location and traffic data, the system can calculate the shortest or fastest route in seconds.
4. Theft warning
The latest fleet tracking systems include theft warning functionality. If a vehicle that’s not in use suddenly begins to move, the system administrators are sent a warning via SMS, phone call or push notification. This silent alarm can be switched off by the user via the interface. But if it isn’t, an automated message can be sent to the relevant authorities. And once the alarm is activated, the vehicle is tracked for the duration of its journey.
5. Vehicle and driver information
The newest GPS fleet tracking software uses the GPS device to help collect information beyond GPS-related information. The registration number, VIN, odometer, fuel efficiency and idling time are just a few of the readings on fleet vehicles that a user can call up.
The latest GPS fleet trackers monitor driving styles and keep detailed records. The information collated on drivers includes speed profile, idling, work hours, accidents and braking. This data is essential for effective risk management — which improves profitability and safety. A clear risk management strategy is also a requirement for comprehensive insurance cover.
Read more: GPS tracking laws UK
Maximise Efficiency and Customer Service
Logistics and distribution are dynamic industries that must adapt to ever-changing circumstances on the roads of Britain. Rather than react to issues and inefficiencies after the fact, companies can now use fleet trackers to make operational decisions that have an immediate impact. The result is lower costs, increased efficiency and, ultimately, higher profits.
Fleet tracking systems that work in real-time give companies complete control over their vehicles. Not only does this improve a firm’s efficiency, but it also provides the customer with a faster, more reliable service.