Telematics has become increasingly important due to the federally-mandated adoption of ELDs (Electronic Logging Devices) by US motor carriers and drivers, and soon by Canadian carriers as well. Carriers and fleet owners are figuring out how to leverage their investment in these devices to create considerable new value, once these systems are in place. There are many high-value use cases being implemented. Here we discuss some of the most common ones being implemented across the industry.
Use Cases and Value Drivers
Fuel is the single largest operating cost for most carriers (even eclipsing driver pay), often accounting for more than a third of the total annual operating costs of each vehicle. There are several ways ELDs can help reduce fuel consumption:
• Discover drivers with excessive acceleration and speeding. Correct that behavior with training.
• Identify excessive/unnecessary idling and retrain drivers to reduce it, possibly with financial incentives. Consider installing heating and cooling systems that work independently of the engine, so drivers can remain comfortable in the cab, without idling the engine, in hot and cold weather. Consider providing auxiliary power, independent of the engine, to provide drivers with power for their devices while the vehicle is parked.
• Identify and fix vehicles that are getting poor mileage due to engine or other vehicle issues. Taken together, the savings from these efforts can be significant. Some research has shown that improving driving behavior can reduce fuel costs (for that driver) by as much as 37%. Overall fuel reduction from telematics-driven efforts can be up to 25%. This can equate to thousands of dollars per year for class 8 long-haul vehicles and many hundreds of dollars per year for medium and light-duty short-haul
vehicles. It can also be a significant tool to help companies meet carbon footprint reduction goals.