GPS fleet tracking is an increasingly common technology for commercial fleets. Yet you can do even more to improve productivity and gain efficiency by pairing your GPS tracking data with geofencing tools. Read on to learn about fleet geofencing and its advantages and applications.
What is fleet geofencing?
Geofencing is a digital solution in which you set up a virtual perimeter around a specific location of your choice or a point of interest. Your virtual boundary can pinpoint a zone as narrow as a single-lane street or as vast as a whole country. You can also set a boundary around an entire highway. Fleet geofencing puts this into practice for fleet vehicles.
Taking advantage of GPS fleet tracking, you can set up real-time notifications letting you know when assets enter or exit the boundaries of the geofenced perimeter. Using WiFi, cellular data, GPS, or RFID, the geofencing software will use real-time data about your assets to trigger pre-programmed responses.
Advantages of fleet geofencing
Fleet geofencing can help improve productivity and streamline operations. There are many ways it can make life easier for drivers and fleet managers:
- Helps prevent cargo theft. Take quick action if an asset moves outside of its geofence boundaries
- Ensures driver safety. Use geofences to identify high-risk locations and be more attentive to your drivers as they pass through those regions.
- Reduces administrative burden. Geofencing and GPS fleet tracking give administrators real-time access to asset location.
- Provides real-time alerts. Administrators can automate alerts notifying them whenever an asset enters or leaves a virtual parameter, such as a driver entering or leaving a job site.
- Cuts detention time. With geofence alerts notifying you of when a vehicle enters and exits a facility you can quickly identify shippers and receivers that frequently detain your drivers.
How does fleet geofencing work?
Geofencing is easy to use with your fleet management software. First you find your location on a map. Then, you draw the geofence’s shape and set the boundaries for your virtual perimeter.
In configuring a geofence, you can set up entry and exit triggers that will use WiFi, cellular data, GPS, or RFID data to alert you to activities within the chosen zone. For example, you might set up an alert to let you know if a bulldozer leaves its designated zone at a construction job site. You can also set alerts by driver, vehicle, asset, or group.
Industry applications of fleet geofencing
Various industries can benefit from geofencing. This section explores some of the specific advantages in several unique industry environments.
Combatting equipment theft
Construction site thefts are all too common. Even the theft of one loader from a job can be costly. Yet geofencing paired with GPS asset tracking can ensure continuous monitoring of equipment, even on remote sites. With a geofence alert established, you can be alerted any time an asset is unexpectedly moved or used.
With the geofence alerts telling you when equipment enters or exits a site you can also improve cycle times and utilization. With real-time visibility, managers no longer have to call to ask when a truck is due. As Chad Goodrich, service administrator for Equipment Corporation of America, explains, “Now we can see all our drivers, vehicles, and equipment in one place — saving us time from checking files or multiple calls.”
Energy, oil and gas, and rail companies can all similarly benefit from the asset protection advantages offered by fleet geofencing.
Streamlining last-mile delivery
On delivery routes, geofencing can be used to check assigned routes are followed and ensure service level agreements (SLAs) are met. With geofencing technology sending out triggered notifications, communication between managers and drivers is simplified too. This also benefits your customer communications as you can easily update them regarding delivery schedules using geofencing data.
Monitoring rental vehicle activity
Moving truck and vehicle rental companies can use fleet geofencing to bill customers more effectively. With geofencing, the company can bill higher fees when vehicles leave predetermined places or identify drivers who are taking vehicles across international borders, which could run counter to the rental agreement.
Confining business vehicles
Many businesses provide vehicles to employees to perform work. This could be a taxi driver, a snowplow driver, or a city employee on sewer patrol. Geofencing can help ensure your employees stay within their assigned zones. This can simplify dispatch and keep drivers safe too.
Specifically, you might send an alert to field service workers when they’re entering no-go zones in a natural preserve. Or, police fleets may set geofence boundaries around dangerous areas to alert their officers when entering such a location.
Tracking commercial fleets
With geofencing software, fleet managers can track your vehicles’ movement to support fleet optimization and apply safety measures. With alerts about driver idling and detention time, you can also improve route planning (to cut fuel usage and optimize vehicle performance).
Also, rather than calling (and distracting) your drivers to ask about their ETAs, you can set geo-boundaries around their loading spots, rest areas, destination, etc., and receive automated reports.
Geofencing can also be used to create virtual time stamps and cards with your fleet management software recording working hours when staff passes through the digital, geofenced perimeters.
Enjoy geofencing with Motive
Using fleet geofencing and GPS tracking can simplify and improve your fleet management. Various industries can see improved customer satisfaction, compliance, driver safety and asset security. Real-time insights from geofencing can reduce administrative burden and enhance performance, utilization, and monitoring. All of this can drive smarter business decisions.