Hazard Holiday: Why More Fleet Managers Should Use Telematics To Safeguard Drivers

Telematics helps to keep your fleet safe with data on the vehicle, the driving and routes

Holidays, more often than not, can be dangerous. In the lead up to the busy holiday period, when Australian roads become deadlier, fleet managers are being urged to take advantage of fleet telematics systems to help save lives.

Most Australian states and territories follow a ‘Towards Zero’ road safety strategy, similar to the ‘Vision Zero’ principle adopted by many overseas countries and US cities.

Simply put, the Vision Zero goal is to achieve zero road fatalities; because one road fatality is one too many. The Towards Zero campaign aims to ensure no-one is seriously injured on our roads.

Companies striving to operate safe vehicle fleets naturally align with Towards Zero’s key aims – to improve the safety of:

1) road users

2) road speed limits, and

3) road vehicles.

The fourth aim, to improve road and roadside infrastructure, falls outside the direct influence of supply chain operators.

Supporting Fleet Managers To Save Lives & Use Vehicle Telematics

While road safety education and action are helping to lower road fatalities, as it stands, over 1000 people lose their lives on Australian roads each year. And thousands of more road users suffer life-affecting injuries.

Importantly, vehicle telematics systems that monitor vehicles and support drivers have a clear role to play in curbing the future road toll even further.

For fleet managers — with a duty of care to your employed and contracted drivers, and a legal responsibility to ensure safe road activities within your entire supply chain — the operational visibility and data insights offered by a fleet telematics system can’t be ignored.

Vehicle fleet telematics systems provide numerous business gains, such as:

  • optimised routes and deliveries
  • better dispatching and customer service
  • greater efficiencies and productivity, and more…

But when it comes to protecting lives, how will a fleet telematics system make your drivers safer on the road?

What’s crucial for a fleet manager to know?

1. You’ll know where they are

Real-time GPS tracking of your moving vehicles using a fleet telematics system will give you a birds-eye view of the locations of your company’s vehicles and drivers.

Knowing where your drivers are is the first critical piece of information you’ll need to quickly help them if there’s an emergency.

Plus, if a vehicle ever leaves a designated ‘geofenced’ work area, the onboard telematics system can trigger an alert, to let you know when a vehicle may be stolen and driven to a non-designated area.

Telematics fleet management systems can also collect data from various vehicle systems, to indicate out-of-the-ordinary activities, for example, longer than normal idling, stationary positions or unusual speed readings – with an alert sent to notify head office.

If route changes occur due to unforeseen hazards, fleet managers will have this information automatically on hand to make timely decisions.

2. You’ll know how they drive

Fleet telematics systems can monitor driver behaviours and critical vehicle checkpoints such as speeding, seatbelt use, driving time for fatigue management, harsh braking, excessive acceleration and so on.

When compliance to meet safety and legal regulations is vital, what you measure about your drivers via vehicle telematics, you can then manage more effectively.

Road safety for mobile fleets is all about keep your fleet in good condition and being proactive
As your ‘chain of responsibility’ for on-road safety comes under pressure during holiday periods, fleet telematics systems help you set achievable safety and efficiency goals for your drivers. Think about instigating rewardable targets that engage your personnel to become consistently better drivers, for example, with behaviours that;

  • improve fuel economy
  • eliminate speeding
  • delay vehicle wear via less harsh braking and accelerating.
What’s more, telematics fleet management systems can be tailored to deliver automatic in-vehicle instructions and performance coaching to your drivers – to proactively train better, safer drivers of your road vehicles.

3. You’ll know the condition of your vehicles

Real-time data from your fleet telematics system provides pertinent details about the mechanical state of your vehicles. Vehicle fault diagnostics, engine hours, fuel consumption, instrument readings and sub-system data from each vehicle, plus pre-trip checks (e.g. for loads, load restraints, dangerous goods) and maintenance scheduling, offer valuable insights to improve fleet safety and productivity, as well as support management of your supply chain responsibilities.

4. You’ll know when something happens, or prevent it 

Although we strive for a safe road transport system that protects us from our own and others’ mistakes, unforeseen events and accidents still happen. Telematics can help to identify and monitor drivers who are tired and distracted and to assess unsafe road and weather conditions. Logging of work and rest times for heavy vehicle fatigue management and Electronic Work Diaries requirements can be extracted from vehicle telematics data. Add-on capabilities, available with Leopard Delivery and Leopard Telematics, such as in-cab cameras to view drivers and roads, means vehicle telematics systems may be effectively used to reduce fatigue- and/or weather-related incidents. Monitoring of heavy vehicle stability systems help to detect a vehicle approaching its handling limits. GPS tracking combined with collision detection sensors in the vehicle can be set to trigger an automatic accident notification with location data to emergency services and your head office. Furthermore, forensic acquisition of vehicle data could be helpful for understanding any potential losses and managing the subsequent investigation. Lastly, vehicle telematics systems can detect when a service is due or when a battery is close to the end of its service life, allowing appropriate tasks can be actioned to prevent your driver from being stranded due to engine problems. A well-designed vehicle telematics system will help improve driving and prevent accidents. Subsequently, this will enhance road transport safety, as a whole, and reduce safety risks across your entire fleet, for greater peace of mind.

Geotab & Leopard

Partnering with Geotab to deliver integrated fleet telematics solutions, Leopard Systems are proud to support the work of Vision Zero into Australia, alongside the Towards Zero road safety campaign.

Leopard Telematics™ provides a simple-to-use platform interface that delivers rapid alerts, for fleet managers to act on mission-critical events as soon as they occur. Integrating relevant telematics data with business systems offers fleet managers operational visibility for better decision-making. Driver scorecard reports from Leopard Telematics™ data helps fleet managers coach and incentivise for improved driving behaviours. Plus, provides customisable reports, to help you visualise specific information relevant to your unique operation. Contact Leopard Systems today to find out more about Leopard Telematics™ for your fleet.

SANTA SUCCESS: Let’s make your delivery stress disappear for good this Christmas

Tracking systems for your deliveries give you complete visibility on where your deliveries are

Santa has his own delivery tracking system

Since that jolly delivery guy, the elven operation and last-mile reindeer only exist in the minds of excited kids on Christmas eve — is it really possible to transport goods with less stress this Christmas without a delivery tracking system? As a mid-sized transport company, you know all too well that delivering freight at Christmas time, or any peak period, can be anything but magical. Between lost deliveries and unhappy customers, missed pick-ups and angry shippers, wasted time seeking important information and wasted money redelivering parcels and freight, it’s not easy or fun being at the logistics end of ‘Santa’. But there are delivery tracking systems out there that won’t cost a fortune and are easy to get started with.

In the lead-up to Christmas in Australia, over 75% of internet users prefer online shopping over traditional shopping(1). Consequently, consumer and service level demand for ‘in full, on time’ deliveries will sky rocket, again. Transport and logistics companies need to be ready, with supply chain visibility, to meet these requirements.

In fact, the Australian transport and logistics sector is dominated by businesses who move freight with limited supply chain visibility; restricted by the high cost of complex IT systems(2). To improve business results, suitable generic IT solutions that help businesses monitor supply chain visibility and delivery events in real time, were recommended(2).

A delivery tracking system makes proof of delivery easy

With deliveries from online sales set to boom—yet, many delivery companies find it difficult to make major technology investments like courier tracking systems—a low-cost delivery tracking system makes commercial sense. These businesses could start with an easy-to-use, fast-to-deploy proof of delivery app that resolves the fundamental challenges of supply chain visibility.

 

Easy proof of delivery and sign on glass technology

Logically, delivery companies recruit non-permanent contractors and temp-hire drivers to cover busy peak periods like Christmas. But how do you keep track of outsourced freight runs and ensure your contract drivers perform your deliveries correctly? Is there a way to help your temp drivers reduce the error-prone manual handling of delivery transactions, and simplify how they document completed jobs? If you could track every driver’s pick-ups and deliveries in real time, and record every end-customer’s receiving signature, wouldn’t that delivery tracking system information, alone, help your company better monitor the work done, and know what work you are paying for? Better still, what if your company could enhance your ‘completed run’ supply chain visibility via the very smartphone devices your contract drivers already own? And, what if you could quickly launch this delivery tracking system in a couple of days, not months?

Proof of delivery ap: A gift out of the box 

Notably, the Starter account of Leopard Delivery Cloud™ by Leopard Systems includes a run management dashboard (Job Centre) and unlimited mobile-linked driver accounts, straight out of the box. In a nutshell, registered drivers can immediately begin to feed pick-up and delivery information back to the Job Centre via a proof of delivery app on their own smartphone/tablet or a company supplied device.

On the road with a delivery tracking system makes it easy for the driver to adhere to procedures

When all in sync, your drivers use the Leopard Delivery Cloud™ app at every pick-up and delivery point. They scan the freight’s barcode, and record the quantity of items and location. Most importantly, your drivers collect the customer’s sign-on-glass Proof of Delivery (POD) or pick-up signature, via their touchscreen, to instantly verify the transaction took place. Back at head-office, the Job Centre allows management to see all the information entered by the drivers in real time and throughout the day. Every night the Job Centre creates spreadsheet reports of your company’s daily run details and collected proof of delivery app information for account management purposes. You can also easily add or disable driver accounts from the Job Centre delivery tracking system.

Proof in the supply chain visibility pudding

As is, Leopard Delivery Cloud™ Starter is a solid, low-cost supply chain visibility platform and proof of delivery app that’s quick to set up and straightforward to use. Starter tracks and records essential information for your freight deliveries and pick-ups, in real time. The seemingly simple requirement of POD or Proof of Pick Up, shouldn’t be underestimated in safeguarding your delivery service performance. 

In short, no-one is left in the dark about where an item is, or who’s responsible for it. What’s more, your drivers follow your company processes, which in turn, informs your performance and payroll obligations, plus promotes greater productivity.

The end result of a delivery tracking system – happy customer.

 Celebrate the savings

Leopard Delivery Cloud™ Starter, as a supply chain visibility platform, harnesses the unparalleled savings of ‘bring your own device’ (BYOD). When your contract drivers use a device they’re familiar with – you save on training costs, delivery tracking systems and hardware purchases. In addition, Leopard Delivery Cloud™ Starter offers an extremely low-cost entry point for a supply chain visibility and logistics platform. With affordable monthly pricing based on the number of drivers linked to your proof of delivery app Starter account, your company can grow and contract your driver numbers in a scalable cost-effective way. This pay-as-you-go service is backed by Leopard System’s email support when you require help; saving you time through better supply chain visibility, as well as avoiding major IT infrastructure, delivery tracking systems development and maintenance costs.

Scanning bar codes with delivery tracking system an app

 
To successfully deliver your goods, minus the traditional Christmas delivery stress, simply request a Starter Registration Form by emailing register@leopardsystems.com.au.

Complete and return the form, then you’ll receive your Starter account login.

Your account includes your Job Centre, plus multiple smartphone access details for your delivery drivers to install Leopard Delivery Cloud™ on their iOS and Android devices.

From there you can get started straight away with your delivery tracking system. Add jobs to your Job Centre. Link drivers to your awaiting jobs list. Your drivers can start delivering your Christmas parcels and freight immediately. Sound good?

We hope you enjoy the supply chain visibility benefits of a proof of delivery app that you can set up today. Good luck with your deliveries and Merry Christmas!

From all the team at Leopard Systems

P.S. We also offer Leopard Delivery Cloud™ as a full-scale enterprise mobility solution. The Starter account can be expanded to an all-inclusive range of capabilities such as turn-by-turn GPS navigation for drivers, real-time GPS map locations of vehicles for head office, real-time job forwarding to drivers, push-to-talk audio communications, OHS & chain of responsibility checks, ERP integration, proof of condition or damage photos, and much more… If your company needs a supply chain visibility solution with more features and more functionality, talk to us today. 

1. ‘Australia B2C E-commerce Report 2016’, Ecommerce Foundation, accessed 23 October 2017,

2. Elphick-Darling, R. et al. ‘Investigating the Potential Benefits of Enhanced End to End Supply Chain Visibility’, Austroads, Research Report AP-R538-17, accessed 23 October 2017.