Beverley Wise, Sales & Marketing Director, Webfleet Solutions UKI, explains how the latest ‘connected van’ technology can help professional builders to work faster, smarter and safer.
With the latest van software solutions, you and your team can now check vehicle safety before you set off, assign jobs to drivers on-the-go, route them there avoiding traffic, monitor how they are driving on the road, record video footage if they have an accident, capture customer signatures for work once they arrive and automatically generate mileage expense reports once they’re back home.
It’s all out there, but the key to success is integrating it all in one place, so all your tech talks to each other and you only have one solution to handle – otherwise running lots of unconnected software in a business can actually slow you down.
A connected van solution, rooted in telematics software, will provide one hub, one interface and one easy way of accessing and running any software you invest in – saving time, money and resources.
Less fuel, better customer service
With telematics technology, the daily workflow can be automatically loaded onto the in-vehicle devices, the sequence of customer visits optimised, and drivers routed directly to their destinations.
At the same time, automatic alerts advising customers of their arrival times can be sent via text or email.
If things change on the day (increased traffic or a change in the job schedule), orders can be easily and quickly reallocated to minimise disruption to the customer.
Telematics fuel data can be used to help improve routing, cutting down on unnecessary mileage, as well as to reduce idling, limiting fuel wastage. It can also be used to identify early opportunities to swap to more efficient fuel options, such as hybrid or EV vans.
Using the same telematics interface for data such as workflow management or accounting software – from the van to the back office – can dramatically streamline workflow and increase billable time.
Invoices can be generated automatically on mobile devices, with data passing to the vehicle and then onwards to the office, allowing for accurate invoices to be created and sent within minutes, eradicating the need for hard copies and boosting cash flow.
Reduce road risk
By monitoring driving standards, such as speeding or harsh braking incidents, telematics solutions provide the insights needed to establish driver risk ratings and to target training where it is needed most. They also empower drivers to adjust their driving style in real time via alerts on their in-cab terminals.
Control insurance costs
Telematics integrations with on-board cameras mean that camera footage can help managers make informed assessments of why accidents occurred.
If the driver was at fault, training may be offered to improve performance. In other cases, the footage can help identify non-fault incidents to minimise insurance pay outs and save on claims handling costs.
Working time visibility
Drivers’ hours rules stipulate that no employee should drive for more than 10 hours or undertake 11 hours’ duty in any 24-hour period.
Coupled with digital planning tools, telematics data enables the hours that drivers spend behind the wheel to be monitored, helping managers to enforce regular break policies and keep their drivers safe.
Keep your vans on the road for longer
Vehicle checks can be made by employees via an app on their telematics driver terminals at the start of each working day, with the results updated in the back office to ensure maintenance schedules are met, wear and tear reduced and unexpected off-road time minimised.
The latest fleet management apps can also be integrated into a telematics hub, meaning vehicle and driver information can all be managed in one place, ensuring that MOTs, services, licence checks and vehicle safety inspections are never missed.
For further information on Webfleet Solutions visit https://www.webfleet.com/en_gb/webfleet/