Productivity and cost efficiencies have taken centre stage for f leet operations during the Covid-19 pandemic, says Vishnu Perumalsamy, managing director of Geotab Africa.
“Some fleets have had to stop operations as a result of lockdown, while others have had to increase their operations due to the growing trend of people buying products online.”
Perumalsamy told Freight Newsthat f leet owners and owners now needed to ensure, from an efficiency perspective, that they were using the correct fuel for their vehicles and correctly maintained equipment for the right delivery duty cycle. “Organisations that have equipped their fleets with telematics systems in order to streamline and digitalise their operations are at an advantage. These systems will enable fleet managers to digitally optimise routes, process and dispatch orders, and avoid unnecessary contact points as per the current restrictions and safety guidelines of lockdown.”
His advice to fleet managers is to use the time gained – with the coronavirus pandemic having slowed down some business operations – to do fleet checks on the in-vehicle management system (IVMS). “Ensuring your system is operational will provide further insight into driving behaviour.”
According to Perumalsamy, Geotab has developed an OEM telematics platform to help f leets manage and monitor multiple cars of various brands in one place. The system provides cloud access to vehicle data by integrating OEM APIs on the Geotab platform to allow secure OEM data transfer to the company’s fleet management software – removing third-party hardware requirements.“The biggest challenge for fleet managers is managing mixed fleets. Some vehicles come fitted with the OEM telematics solutions and others do not have onboard diagnostics, requiring a fleet management device to connect to sensors and read data.
A successful fleet requires a synchronised work flow and comparable data,” explained Perumalsamy. Commenting on the opportunities for fleet management, he said the software would become device agnostic. “Industries using fleets rarely have the same brand and model of vehicles as fleets. They depend on various vehicles or equipment to perform various jobs. A telematics IoT device connects vehicles, machinery or equipment to the internet. Recorded data is relayed over a GPRS network to our servers and can be viewed in the MyGeotab platform in real time, remotely. The MyGeotab system is accessible via the internet, by multiple devices and users, at any given time. This eliminates concerns of data loss if company equipment ever crashes or becomes faulty.
This provides fleet owners with a complete overview of their entire fleet.” He said integrating with third-party hardware and software providers in order to develop customised solutions for various f leet operations was another opportunity. “The MyGeotab software, for example, can easily be integrated into your own company operating system by means of API calls. This means that data from MyGeotab can either be viewed from your operating system, or take things a step further and customise changes from your own system to be reflected on My Geotab.”
Perumalsamy said providing tailor-made solutions for different sectors was critical to meet all industry requirements.