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Vehicle Tracking System Information

Vehicle Tracking Systems - Reduce Fuel Costs In Your Business

Using A Vehicle Tracking System In Your Business Can Reduce Your Fuel Costs

While fuel prices fluctuate the general movement tends to be on the rise.  Fuel costs will continue to be a significant expense for businesses no matter what the size of the fleet.

Vehicle tracking systems can provide a successful and effective way of reducing fuel consumption. Of course how useful the tracking system is will depend on the system you decide to take; some vehicle tracking systems simply tell you where your vehicle is at any point in time, others are more sophisticated.

A fully integrated vehicle tracking solution will provide additional functionality that will help you to manage and reduce fuel consumption within your fleet. In many businesses, especially today, tight profit margins and strong competition means that competitive advantage in delivery, distribution or transportation can have a significant impact on your revenue.

How Will Vehicle Tracking Reduce Fuel Costs?

When you implement a vehicle tracking solution across your business fleet you can reduce your fuel costs in a number of ways.

Reduce Engine Idle Time

One way a fleet manager can impact fuel consumption is by reducing unnecessary vehicle idle time.  Not only will this save costs and reduce air emissions, it will also extend the lifetime of the vehicle. Your drivers might want to maintain a comfortable temperature in their cabs no matter what the season: the heater on in the winter and the air conditioning on in the summer, so when they make a delivery they leave the vehicle running and the engine on.

This might mean an engine idling for hours throughout the working day; consuming unnecessary petrol or diesel.  Excessive idling can prematurely age a vehicle and when a vehicle ages this has a direct impact on fuel economy and engine efficiency.  By installing vehicle tracking a business owner, or fleet manager, can manage each vehicle in the fleet.  The reports received and the alerts generated, from the vehicle tracking system, help monitor driver behaviour; show when vehicles are moving, when the engine is idling, whether the engine is on or off, if the vehicle is speeding or using excessive braking. 

Increasingly businesses are taking more notice of the negative impact vehicle idling can have. You might already have encouraged a voluntary effort from your drivers to stop excessive engine idling and this has probably had a positive effect on fuel consumption.  With a vehicle tracking system it is possible to measure, monitor and manage engine idling and thereby reducing both fleet costs, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and carbon foot print.

Monitor Vehicle Speeds

When you dispatch your delivery vehicles, your service engineers or sales reps to a customer, you probably ask them to arrive as quickly as possible. Your drivers almost certainly drive to their appointed destinations as fast as possible, perhaps regularly exceeding the speed limits as they go.

However excessive speeding, conceivably all speeding, is dangerous for your employee making their journey more risky, using more fuel and adding to the overall cost of the journey and the vehicle.  A vehicle tracking systems will send alerts to the business owner, fleet manager or driver to tell them when they're exceeding speed limits and encouraging them to slow down.  It has been estimated that excessive speeding could reduce the fuel economy of a vehicle by to 20%.   Even if you have a small fleet, making a fuel cost saving of 20% each year quickly makes a positive impact and goes some way to offset fuel price increases.  If you have a large fleet then the potential benefit will be even more dramatic.

Vehicle tracking technology has advanced greatly over the last few years and now tracking systems can include mapping, traffic and speed limit information while monitoring fuel usage and efficiency, vehicle speed and vehicle locations - all in real-time.  This data can be used to improve vehicle and driver efficiency.

Introducing a vehicle tracking system encourages drivers to be responsible for their driving and to be more aware of bad habits. When drivers know you are monitoring their driving behaviour; their speed and fuel consumption, they start to take greater care of how they drive the company vehicle and subsequently you'll see a positive impact on fuel costs, vehicle wear and tear and possible an improved reputation with the general public.

Improved Delivery Planning

Simply starting a vehicle, running it and letting it idle consumes fuel and increases fleet costs.   Any or all of your businesses vehicles may make numerous stops every day.   With a vehicle tracking system you can save time and reduce fuel use by improved vehicle scheduling.  If your business has deliveries that are subject to frequent change, or are not necessarily scheduled by appointments, then it's essential to determine the most efficient route.   Scheduling routes and planning deliveries help to save fuel and make drivers more effective.  However, there is an important difference between simply planning the route and optimising the routes.

Optimising a route means assisting the driver not only to navigate to the destination but to avoid traffic problems, such as congestion and road works.  This in turn will reduce vehicle inefficiency, such as engine idling, and will save on fuel costs and vehicle wear and tear.   A fleet manager can communicate with drivers quickly and decide on the best route or changes to the route as driving conditions or work loads change throughout the day.

It is estimated that by introducing a vehicle tracking system can increase vehicle productivity by as much as 25%.  The tracking system can monitor multiple vehicles and their drivers simultaneously and so find the best vehicle for a specific delivery or location quickly and easily.  Better scheduling means less miles travelled and consequently less fuel used, an extended vehicle life, better customer service and a reduced carbon footprint.

Keep Up-To-Date Records

Fuel expense is a significant cost to many businesses and especially for those with fleets.  Making sure you monitor and keep track of fuel purchases is common sense if you want to control fuel expenditure.  Many businesses will introduce fuel cards to help them manage fuel costs.

A fuel card can provide a discounted fuel price so that fuel costs can be immediately improved.  Additionally fuel cards improve administration because they provide a single VAT invoice showing all dates and times for purchases of fuel.  You're no longer looking for individual receipts from drivers.   However the introduction of a fuel card is only the start of effective fuel management.   In order to fully manage fuel consumption a vehicle tracking solution is required to record purchase and mileage information as well as to maintain accurate records and implement procedures to change fuel purchase behaviour. Looking for Fuel Card Quotes?

A vehicle tracking system can show the location of service stations, vehicle mileage, routes travelled and stops made.  Tracking fuel costs in this way, by vehicle as well as driver, make it easier to control fleet expenses.

Unauthorised use of company vehicles, or after-hours use, can add significant additional expense to fleet costs, not only from the extra fuel used but also engine wear and tear. The tracking system can send a notification to you when a vehicle is used outside of working hours. Any fuel consumed on unapproved journeys can be identified and eradicated, further reducing fleet expenses while increasing vehicle productivity.

Proactive Vehicle Maintenance

Well maintained vehicles perform better than those that are less cared for.  A vehicle tracking management systems will provide maintenance information to ensure every company vehicle is performing efficiently.  The systems maintenance reporting can notify a fleet manager or business owner when maintenance is due based on different variables including mileage, drive time etc.

Routine maintenance schedules can improve a vehicles fuel economy by up to 10%.  These savings can be significant for fleets with twenty five vehicles or more. If you want to ensure the best fuel economy then it's critical to maintain your company vehicles.  A vehicle tracking system will not only notify you when a vehicle is due for a service but it can also keep information about previous services and any past repairs.

Vehicles that are regularly serviced stay operational for longer and work more efficiently. 

Summary - Vehicle Tracking will reduce your fuel costs

By implementing a vehicle tracking system, together with a fuel card programme, will reduce your fuel consumption, increase vehicle efficiency and keep your vehicles on the road longer. Additionally a vehicle tracking system will improve driver behaviour and in doing so with your company's Duty of Care responsibilities.

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We work with the leading vehicle tracking companies.  It is highly likely that at least one of these will have the vehicle tracking solution best suited to your fleet of vehicles.

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