A new survey conducted by Ft. Lauderdale-based PHH First Fleet Corp. found that telematics technology is rapidly becoming a “must have” technology for many private carriers.
According to the study, 60% of fleet managers polled said they are adopting the devices to track equipment status and driver activities, while 79% are installing the technology in at least 75% of their fleet.
“Two or three years ago, fleets didn’t want to go to this level of technology,” Alex Popov, the company’s vp-fleet services, told FleetOwner. “Many felt it would be a nuisance to them, requiring them to devote a lot of resources and time to managing a lot of data. Now we find they are really investing heavily in telematics because it’s a tool that’s going to drive innovation for them.”
“Telematics is the trucking industry’s newest asset in the fight to curtail soaring prices that impact fleet profit margins,” said Michael Lewis, president and gm for PHH First Fleet. “Private truck fleets are using the data available through telematics to understand fuel consumption, the effects of new engine emissions standards, and driver behavior.
The company’s survey found 42% of fleet managers using telematics were most concerned with tracking delivery times, while 39% wanted to optimize routes and fuel management, and 38% thought their drivers would perform better and drive more responsibly if they knew they were being monitored. Equipment endurance (18%) and security (20%) were lower on the scale as reasons to install telematics, said Popov.
The survey also found that 83% of the fleet managers who use telematics said the technology helped improve fleet performance, and 68% said it’s become fundamental to the entire operation. Another 57% reported they were pleased by the visible return on the financial investment in telematics.
Between 50% and 54% said they would probably install or expand a telematics program in their fleets this year, including the adoption of related policies and procedures on the data collected, PHH First Fleet’s survey found.
To view the survey, go to www.phhfirstfleet.com/aboutPHHFirstFleet/mediaCenter/articles/2006truckfleetsurvey.html
To comment on this article, email Sean Kilcarr at [email protected]