The Internet of Things (IoT) brings a number of benefits to fleets, especially around connected vehicles. Find out more on IoT fleet management and how it enables companies to manage by measurement.
IoT fleet management overview
IoT, or internet-connected devices that can be remotely monitored and/or controlled, can be used in a number of ways for fleet management. Collecting and transmitting data through telematics devices is one primary use. The data comes from various sensors that can be installed in any given vehicle. The most well-known type of sensor is the GPS device, but other types do exist and many are integrated with one another. Overall, there are five main categories of data that any connected vehicle will generate:
- Engine data: This can include an engine’s RPM, coolant temperature, fuel levels, tire pressure and washer fluid level.
- Fuel data: This category includes a vehicle’s fuel level, rate of consumption and how often refuelling occurs.
- Geographical location data: This includes location data from a GPS device along with information on a vehicle’s speed and acceleration.
- Driver behavior data: This is any data specifically generated by a driver’s habits: harsh braking, speeding, drifting in the lane, etc.
- Auxiliary data: This is the broadest category and covers any extra devices that might be attached to a vehicle, such as refrigeration units in a food truck. It also includes data generated from integrated devices, such as the driver ID and the NFC keys used in electronic logging.
See also: Are you getting the most out of your telematics data?
How IoT helps fleet management
IoT technology continues to expand and connect vehicles and drivers like never before. The result is new efficiencies and improvements in how businesses manage their fleets. This occurs at both the high level and vehicle-specific level of a company.
High level, general data gives managers an easy and quick look at overall fleet activity. It becomes possible to track aggregate trends and make changes to improve performance. For example, a fleet manager could look at the points in each vehicle’s route where idling is greatest and design and test better optimized routes. This will lead to fleets becoming more efficient and saving money at the same time. Accident rates and locations can also be used to pinpoint areas with hazardous driving conditions which can aid fleet managers in deciding the best routes for their employees.
At the vehicle-specific level, metrics like driving habits and fuel use deliver pinpoint indicators of productivity. Drivers who engage in speeding, harsh braking, sudden acceleration and other risky habits can be identified and provided with coaching. Additionally, monitoring fuel usage with the help of telematics devices can reduce waste and potential fraud.
There are also traditional benefits of IoT telematics devices. Using them aids in simplifying compliance with environmental and safety regulations, monitoring the effectiveness of fuel and idling policies while increasing the vehicle’s value by promoting preventative maintenance.
More benefits of IoT fleet management:
- Being able to monitor IOX-AUX devices linked to a vehicle and acting on the data in real-time.
- Tracking and managing movable assets such as tools, equipment, inventory and other non-powered assets through Bluetooth beacons.
- Preventing theft and loss by tracking valuable merchandise or company equipment as it is moved from one location to the next.
- Tracking and monitoring tire temperature and pressure data.
IoT is becoming increasingly more significant in the fleet management industry. By knowing where, what and how assets are deployed on any connected device, managers can make smart decisions based on factual data. Having the capabilities of this business intelligence is driving performance and creating competitive advantages for fleet managers.
Learn more about Geotab’s fleet management solutions for fleet optimization, productivity and compliance.
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