With smartphones being a part of daily life for most Americans, it’s hard to believe that only two decades have passed since then-president Bill Clinton set forth a directive to make the nation’s GPS satellite system a dual-use system. While the GPS system was originally developed for military use, Clinton’s directive made it possible for the system to be used for civilian purposes as well.
Former president Ronald Reagan had initially pledged that the GPS system would be made available for civilian use once it was completed after the Soviets shot down Korean Air flight 007 in 1983, because the aircraft ventured into restricted air space. Clinton fulfilled that promise.
Even though the GPS system was available for civilian use, many businesses failed to appreciate its full potential because the government had purposefully degraded its civilian capabilities at the onset of the Gulf War to prevent the nation’s enemies from being able to manipulate the system to gain an advantage in combat. Although the availability of the GPS system didn’t have an immediate transformative effect on the national or global business communities, some companies did take advantage of the new technology.
Benefon, a company that made mobile phones, was one such company. Benefon produced the first mobile phone that had built-in GPS technology in 1999.
Just four years after he issued the directive to make the GPS system a dual-use system, Clinton put an end to the military’s continuing degradation of the GPS signals that were available for civilian use, a decision that did not go unnoticed by the transportation, fishing and forestry industries, among others. In 2007, the global business community’s confidence in the GPS system was further bolstered when the government announced that the next generation of satellites used in the GPS system would not have the technology to downgrade the system’s capabilities in the future.
In the years immediately preceding and following this announcement, business entities around the world began to look for ways to incorporate the use of the GPS system into their daily operations to give them a competitive edge and streamline their operations.
The Benefits of GPS Fleet Tracking Systems
If you own or work for a company that has commercial vehicles, you’re probably keenly aware that many businesses across the globe use GPS-based technology to manage their fleets of automobiles. If you don’t already use fleet management software, you may not be familiar with the many benefits this kind of technology can provide for your business.
If, like many business leaders before you, you’re interested in learning how you can use a fleet management system to gain a competitive edge and streamline your operations, you should examine the benefits GPS tracking systems provide. Being knowledgeable about these advantages will not only help you see the potential impact a fleet tracking system can have on your business, but it can also help you know which questions to ask when buying fleet management software.
By examining the advantages a GPS tracking system provides, you can identify the ones that are most important to your company and craft your list of inquiries accordingly.
The biggest potential benefit that implementing fleet management software provides is a significant return on investment. While the initial investment required to install a GPS fleet tracking system and the ongoing monthly operating costs may seem intimidating at first, you have to look at the big picture instead of the immediate expense involved with implementing a GPS fleet management system.
In some cases, companies can see a return of $2.00-$5.00 for every dollar they spend on a GPS fleet tracking system. That’s an ROI of between 200 and 500 percent. Just as encouragingly, many businesses are able to recover their investment in as little as three to six months.
A number of other benefits contribute to the ROI you’ll get from installing a GPS fleet management system. These advantages include the following:
In addition to cutting costs to increase your bottom line, implementing a GPS tracking system can help you earn more revenue by optimizing your delivery routes. With more efficient routes, you can increase the number of deliveries your drivers can make in a single shift. If your company can make more deliveries per day, you can take more orders and earn more revenue. According to NDP Consulting’s report, companies that installed a GPS fleet tracking system experienced a collective increase of 25 percent in the number of the work orders they received because of their ability to fulfill orders faster.
Optimizing your delivery routes provides another valuable benefit: it improves the level of customer service you’re able to render. You’ll be able to give your clients more accurate delivery times, for instance. You’ll also be able to respond to requests for pickups faster because you’ll know which of your drivers is closest to the client who has requested a pickup and you’ll be able to re-route that driver to your client’s location.
How to Choose a Fleet Management System
Now that you know all of the benefits that a GPS fleet tracking system can provide, you’re probably eager to have one installed. While your enthusiasm is understandable, you have to know how to choose a fleet management system before you invest in one to make sure you’re getting the system that’s right for your business.
The first step in a fleet tracking buying guide is for you to identify the reasons you want to get a GPS fleet management system. Do you want to use your system to locate your vehicles only? Or, do you want your system to have the capacity to help you reduce your operating expenses, such as your fuel and labor costs, and increase your revenue as well?
Once you’ve determined the reasons why you want a GPS fleet tracking system, you need to figure out the number of vehicles you want your system to track and the area your GPS fleet management system will need to cover. Once you’ve figured these things out, it’s time to create a list of questions for the prospective GPS software vendors you’re going to interview.
Questions to Ask GPS Fleet Management System Providers
You should design your list of questions so that the responses you get will reveal more than just the price that a company is willing to install a GPS tracking system and support its day-to-day operation for. While price is generally an important factor in any business decision, you should consider many other factors as you’re choosing a service provider, including whether or not you think you’ll be comfortable working with a given provider on a regular basis.
One of the first questions that a GPS fleet tracking purchasing guide will recommend you ask is this: “How long has your company been in business?” It may be less risky for you to choose a company that has a proven history of success than it is to select a business that was established just recently and that lacks an extended track record. As a general rule of thumb, if a GPS software provider is actively hiring or the company is expanding by acquiring a competitor, it’s a good sign that the company intends to be in business for the long haul. What you want to avoid is buying a GPS fleet tracking system from a company that might be out of business in the foreseeable future.
You can also investigate the company’s trustworthiness by asking a prospective vendor for a list of references. You can reach out to other businesses that have fleets similar to yours and inquire about the experiences they’ve had with the company you’re interviewing.
Additional questions you should ask prospective GPS fleet tracking system providers include the following:
Fleet Trax Offers GPS Tracking Solutions Across Industries
In business for more than a decade, Fleet Trax has the proven experience to provide GPS tracking solutions in all types of industries. Whether you own a taxi service, a towing company, a landscaping business, a plumbing and HVAC company, a trucking business or you compete in another industry altogether, we have a GPS fleet management system that can accommodate your business needs.
When you choose Fleet Trax for your GPS needs, you gain a trusted partner that is genuinely invested in your success. Our scalable GPS fleet management systems are capable of tracking your most valuable assets, your commercial vehicles and your products, no matter how many automobiles are included in your fleet. Whether you have a handful of drivers on the road at once or a crew of thousands, you’ll know where your vehicles are with our tracking systems.
We offer hard-wired and wireless cloud-based GPS tracking options that allow you to stay current with your fleet’s movements in real-time. Our GPS fleet management systems are intuitive and require minimal training to use. Our systems provide detailed reports on driver behaviors and the maintenance status of your vehicles, helping you reduce your fuel and labor costs and save on maintenance expenses.
Our easy-to-use GPS fleet tracking systems can help you avoid hefty fines because they generate the Hos logs your drivers need to remain AOBRD, FMCSA and DOT compliant electronically. In addition to helping you remain in compliance with the law, our menu of services also includes convenient fuel cards, geotracking and roadside assistance, as well. Our asset tracking capabilities will help you to know that your heavy equipment is only being used and deployed when and where you need it, too.
When you choose to work with us, you don’t need to sign a contract. We provide the ongoing training and technical support you need to get the most out of your GPS fleet management system for however long you decide to stay with us. Once you see all of the benefits our GPS fleet tracking systems provide, we’re sure you’ll want to keep us on as your committed partner well into the future.
As one of the top GPS providers in North America, we don’t just sell GPS fleet tracking products. We offer businesses just like yours the chance to enter into a partnership with a proven company that is invested in their success. As an industry leader, we set the example by providing affordable, appropriate GPS fleet management systems for businesses of all sizes and helping them achieve the maximum ROI from their systems.
We provide customer service that matches the quality of our state-of-the-art technology. When you work with us, you’ll have a dedicated account manager who will handle all of your GPS system ordering and training needs. You won’t be charged extra for the data you need to operate your business efficiently. You can extract the information you want from our system for free and you’ll always have access to your entire GPS system history, because we’ll never purge your data.
Whether you’re in construction, energy and mining, cable and telecommunications, government or another field, we have a GPS tracking solution for you. Give us call or chat with us online to learn more today.