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Part 6: 8 Powerful Features that Only Come with a GPS Tracking Device

By Jessica Stoddard Back to Home on July 18, 2016
Ultimate Guide

In Part 6 of the Ultimate Guide to GPS Tracking for Business, we're taking a closer look at eight key features of GPS tracking and how they can help improve your business's operations.

Here we go:

1. Real-time GPS location

With GPS tracking, fleet managers can quickly and easily locate any vehicle or asset using real-time location tracking data. This allows fleet managers the flexibility to adjust routes as needed, make quality assurance visits, and ensure employees perform to the best of their ability.

Route Replay

Real-time location tracking helps Earl, founder of CSI-Absolute Clean Inc. in Chicago, IL, ensure his employees always provide the best service:

"If I am out making follow up calls on customers, I can look at my phone and see where everyone is. If I am within 6-7 miles, I will stop by to check on the job and see how things are going."

2. Maps, landmarks & geofences

Businesses can maximize the effectiveness of GPS tracking by using features like maps, landmarks and geofences:

  • Maps: GPS tracking software provides a streamlined, intuitive view of a business's fleet and assets and their operations. Some software even uses the familiar Google Maps interface for ease of use.

  • Landmarks: Save important landmarks like main offices, warehouses, or popular service calls.

  • Geofences: Businesses can create a virtual fence around important areas in their service region and receive notifications whenever a vehicle enters or exits these regions. Geofences are especially helpful when there are employees working in different areas, and they're a powerful way to ensure the security of vehicles and assets.

3. Alerts & notifications

Mobile Notifications

GPS trackers send notifications whenever a particular event or driving behavior occurs. Fleet managers can configure their GPS tracker to send alerts for:

  • Harsh braking
  • Rapid acceleration
  • Excessive idling
  • Vehicle or asset use outside of scheduled work hours
  • Unauthorized use
  • Vehicles or assets entering or exiting a geofenced area
  • Tampering with GPS tracking device
  • Maintenance schedules and reminders

Alerts keep fleet managers tuned in to how their drivers behave in the field so they can take immediate steps to improve efficiency and curb unsafe or wasteful behavior. Patrick, owner of Tri-County Power Sweeping, in Atlanta, GA, uses alerts to control his fuel usage:

"Speeding alerts cut down on potential accidents and tickets, but they also save me in fuel costs. […] Sometimes trucks would run out of fuel before the end of the night because of excessive speeding. When I installed [GPS tracking devices], that stopped happening"

Learn more about what real-time alerts can do for your fleet.

4. Driver ratings & safety

Some GPS tracking devices collect data on driver behavior and create safety report cards for individual drivers and for entire fleets. Fleet managers can review these report cards to identify areas where their drivers can improve their driving habits.

Safety Report

At Servpro in Columbus, OH, GPS fleet tracking has helped Nathan, the manager, improve his fleet's safety scores from C's to B's.

"We are at about 90%. With so many vehicles, if someone wrecks it can have a big impact on our insurance premiums. Employees are aware of the tracking so they will drive safe."

5. Automate maintenance

The best GPS tracking systems are also capable of automating fleet maintenance. Fleet managers can input routine preventive maintenance schedules based on usage, miles travelled, or scheduled dates and receive alerts when maintenance is due, such as:

  • Oil changes.
  • Tire rotations.
  • Warranty expirations.
  • License renewals, and more.

Learn more about automating your vehicle maintenance with GPS tracking.

6. Dispatch & messaging

In addition to helping businesses dispatch the nearest or most convenient vehicle, GPS tracking helps fleet managers stay connected to their drivers at all times. Managers can use their GPS tracking software to:

  • Communicate with individual drivers or send messages to their entire fleet.
  • Manage and optimize workflow by assigning and reassigning tasks.
  • Keep track of time spent on the job.

Here's an example:

Because of the nature of their business, David, the service coordinator at Will Electronics in St. Louis, MO, can't verify routes before their drivers set out every morning. GPS tracking enables David to manage routing and make changes throughout the day. If he can quickly locate the nearest vehicle to any emergency, David can easily route the most appropriate vehicle to that location.

7. Time tracking

GPS tracking's time tracking capabilities ensure that businesses only pay their employees for the time they actually spend on the job, allowing fleet managers to reduce payroll and overtime costs. This also allows you to accurately estimate future bids based on the average time it takes your crew to complete a job.

At CSI-Absolute Clean, Earl appreciates how GPS tracking helps his employees track time:

"If an employee says they forgot to clock out, I can verify where they were and for how long. […] Guys are more punctual because they know I can verify it."

8. IFTA reporting

If your business must provide IFTA reporting, GPS tracking can simplify the process by automatically generating IFTA reports for individual vehicles and entire fleets. Fleet managers can quickly access individual or fleet wide mileage and fuel usage data, as well as tax rates for individual territories, and generate reports in seconds so they can focus on improving service instead of reporting.

Learn more about Linxup's fuel-tax reporting add-on feature.

How does GPS tracking work?

In the final part of the Ultimate Guide to GPS Tracking for Business, we look back at the origins of GPS and explain the technology that drives your GPS tracking devices. Stay tuned to learn more.

Read More

Part 1: Which Businesses Can Benefit from GPS Tracking
Part 2: How GPS Tracking Reduces Costs and Increases Revenue
Part 3: 3 More Ways GPS Tracking Benefits Your Business
Part 4: Reduce Theft and Monitor Asset Usage with GPS Asset Tracking
Part 5: 3 Ways GPS Tracking Simplifies Fleet Management
Part 6: 8 Powerful Features that Only Come with a GPS Tracking Device
Part 7: How does GPS Tracking Work?