Over recent years, telematics has gained increasing popularity amongst rental businesses and has taken the industry by storm. But what is telematics and how can it benefit the rental industry? Formed by the words ‘Telecommunication’ and ‘Informatics’, telematics consists of a wide range of technologies, used together to monitor, transmit and receive fleet related behaviours such as longitude, latitude, machine health, battery life, meter readings, hours of operation and job site safety.
Nowadays, when you purchase new equipment it is fitted with a tracking device as standard, this feeds data back to your centre of operation, giving rental desks and fleet managers a wealth of information to work with. By using the data these tracking devices provide, teams can make more informed data-driven decisions to cut costs, improve overall efficiency and offer customers a proactive experience like no other.
Telematics solutions give you the ability to track equipment with immense accuracy, eliminating visibility gaps and improving inventory management, which gives you newfound knowledge of business performance. Real-time GPS fleet tracking ensures you maintain a complete view of your equipment. The ability to see the status and exact location of your assets alongside data such as hours of operation, meter readings and battery life, helps manage logistics, servicing jobs and charging periods.
Keeping your team in sync and ensuring every aspect of your business operation runs smoothly is no easy task. With GPS fleet tracking, this becomes a whole lot easier. The transferral of data between teams in the office and your workforce out in the field becomes instantaneous. Telematics solutions that integrate with rental software will also allow for seamless data transfer, keeping the entire team updated in real-time.
Planning jobs in advance make it far easier for teams to assign new jobs to the best person. Drivers can be allocated to the closest jobs, saving on fuel costs, improving response times and contributing to more being completed each day. Should any unexpected problems occur, such as road closures or major traffic congestion, GPS fleet tracking means that drivers can easily be allocated new routes, avoiding obstructions or alternatively a new driver can be assigned based on proximity.
It’s a fact that equipment can spend a surprising amount of time idle, so knowing when it’s active is invaluable when aiming to improve the bottom line. Telematics data not only displays the status of your machinery, but it also highlights if the item is not being used frequently enough. Overused assets with costs to be recharged are also highlighted since fully utilised equipment could indicate investment opportunities.
Telematics data takes the guesswork out of equipment utilisation. Real-time machine health lets you ensure equipment is serviced and repaired on time. It also offers data that will highlight when the performance of an asset begins to decline, indicating that there may be a faulty component in need of repair. Preventative maintenance like this corrects issues before they arise, so assets can continue to make revenue. If necessary, rental software on a mobile device will allow you to service and repair assets on site, reducing any unnecessary downtime.
Most leading telematics and rental systems allow you to create something known as a Geofence. This is a virtual boundary that triggers automated alerts if your assets enter or leave a particular area. A great solution for reducing theft. Some telematics systems even give you the ability to remotely switch off your equipment if it’s being used outside of the agreed perimeter or working hour. Innovation like this delivers peace of mind that your machinery is safe and secure.
Telematics for the rental industry is not only an operational tool for recording and monitoring the whereabouts of equipment, but it’s also a solution that can improve customer satisfaction. This is something that can often be overlooked as one of the key benefits of telematics for rental businesses.
Live data transmitted from a telematics solution gives you accurate information about assets at your disposal. This means you can exceed customer expectations, providing them with the whereabouts of drivers and the precise time of arrival. Keeping your customers informed through every stage of the journey works wonders in creating and maintaining strong business relationships.
So, if you’d like to implement a telematics solution into your business, the next stage is to select a provider. There are plenty of providers to choose from, each offering functionality that slightly differentiates them from the rest. In light of this, it’s important that you take the time to find the system that’s most suited to your requirements.
If you are interested in improving your operational efficiencies, the performance of your fleet and customer experience then get in touch with the inspHire team. We already integrate with many of the leading telematics providers and have worked with companies who are already reaping the benefits.