Does GPS Fleet Tracking Improve Your Bottom Line?
As a fleet manager, you've heard of GPS fleet tracking. The idea of knowing where all your assets and drivers are at all times might have grabbed your attention, but as always the question is, "How will this service actually help my business?" You've got a lot to juggle, and upgrading your fleet with tracking software may not feel like a change you want to tackle unless you're certain it's going to improve your bottom line.
If you're wondering how GPS tracking helps increase ROI, you're not alone. A lot of fleet tracking companies are less than transparent about what impacts the cost of GPS tracking and what value you're getting for your investment. Track Your Truck understands that you want a simple explanation which will allow you to make the best decision for your company, and that's what this guide is all about.
What Impacts the Cost of a Fleet Tracking Management System?
When you scan the market for GPS tracking management systems, you'll see a huge range of pricing. It's not always easy to parse out what companies are charging you for and what you get for the money. These are the top five factors to consider when determining the value of a company's tracking software and services.
A tracking service is only as good as the equipment it uses. Many companies include GPS trackers as part of their monthly service fee, including Track Your Truck. However, other companies may attempt to squeeze more money out of you by providing you with older or sub-par trackers that are not reliable. In these cases, the tracker may start malfunctioning, and you may be forced to pay for a replacement.
Depending on the size of your fleet, the cost associated with continually replacing tracking equipment will build up quickly. Track Your Truck supplies only the most reliable LTE equipment for use with our services.
We stand by our equipment so much that we offer a two-year warranty on each tracker. If something goes wrong within that time, we make it easy to have your equipment repaired or replaced. If you see a service that offers extremely low pricing on equipment, investigate the red flag. See if the company offers a warranty, and find out what its terms are if they do.
Some companies offer a warranty just to say they do, and you may find on closer inspection that it covers only a very narrow set of circumstances. It's also important to know how simple the claims process is. Are you expected to fill out complex forms and follow a strict set of steps before you can even talk to someone about it? This may be a sign that you don't want to deal with this company. A robust warranty on the full range of equipment shows a company believes in its products and that a slightly higher price is reflective of equipment quality.
For fleet tracking to help your bottom line, you have to be sure the service and the equipment work as intended. In a competitive market, some companies have no qualms pushing devices that have not been inspected or certified by the cellular and satellite carriers the system will be using. Non-certified devices can conflict with the carrier network, rendering the service useless.
A non-certified product may function fine at the time of purchase, but carriers can decide to discontinue service at any time.
Before we approve any product to offer our customers, we ensure the device has gone through the rigorous testing of the carrier certification process. Each device is tested and certified in multiple labs so we can ensure the product has a long life of seamless service. And for your peace of mind, our warranty covers full replacement. It costs more to work with certified devices, but the losses associated with non-certified devices are simply not worth the upfront savings.
4. Software Source
Some companies will white-label software, meaning that they are selling you something they didn't create and aren't intimately familiar with. When you use a white-labeled service, you can easily see the impact of this cost-cutting shortcut. If a bug occurs, you may have to wait months for it to be resolved as bug fixes only come around once per quarter at their fastest. Needless to say, this makes it impossible to get the full value out of the service.
Track Your Truck builds all our software solutions in-house. We tackle bugs and system updates at a substantially faster rate than our competitors, and we work continually to provide smoother service and new features for our software. With a white-labeled software, on the other hand, you have to hope it works with no guarantee that the software will be fixed or modified if there's a bug or other issue.
5. Customer Service
There simply isn't a substitute for competent and caring support. The level of customer service you can expect from ultra-cheap fleet tracking companies is usually somewhere between dismal and nonexistent. The cheapest services make it hard to get a hold of customer service representatives, and even harder to get a problem solved.
Track Your Truck is proud to provide excellent service when you have an issue, but also the support you need to get started with our software. In addition to help desk tickets, our support portal features installation guides and how-to videos that will make it easier to integrate our services into your company. We even have training specialists on staff to help you set up our software NetTrack, and help you learn the ropes. With Track Your Truck, you've always got a helping hand waiting in the wings.
What You Get for the Money
When considering fleet tracking and ROI, you need to know what exactly you're paying for to make the best decision. There are three questions you should answer about fleet tracking and costs before making a choice, to confirm return on investment from GPS tracking.
1. How Much for the Hardware?
Hardware is a sticking point for many fleet managers. Purchasing hardware for multiple vehicles can be costly upfront, especially if you're equipping a large fleet. It's typical for companies to separate the cost of the hardware from the cost of the service. Industry averages hover from around $40 to $200 per device for live GPS trackers. You also need to consider monthly service costs, which usually run between $15 and $30 per month.
Track Your Truck does things a little differently. We clarify fleet tracking ROI by offering free devices and low monthly payments for service. Our service packages start at $19.99 per month, as long as you purchase three or more devices.
Device installation is another cost to consider. Hard-wired systems may require professional installation, which costs between $75 and $150 per vehicle, depending on your geographical location. You also have the option to go with plug-in devices that anyone can set up easily. Many businesses and fleet managers opt for a combination of the two hardware types in order to create the most affordable package.
2. Is There a Contract?
You may be leery of entering into a multi-year contract for a fleet tracking service, especially if there's no warranty or the products aren't carrier-certified. However, contracts can also save you money. Track Your Truck offers our best deals at the two-year contract price point, and our 20-year track record of excellent service proves it's a solid investment. We also offer one-year and month-to-month contracts.
Companies that only offer contract-free service generally have no pricing options, which makes them unsuitable for many small to mid-size fleets. Flexibility is valuable because you can make changes and take advantage of the multiple pricing tiers available.
3. What Services Do I Get?
GPS tracking delivers the money-saving benefits of GPS fleet tracking. Live tracking provides better routing and more transparency for your customers. Track Your Truck's premium GPS vehicle trackers can:
- - Track real-time vehicle location, speed and heading
- - Remotely disable vehicle ignition
- - Monitor driver behavior with a built-in accelerometer
Our NetTrack software offers highly customizable activity reports and data integration capabilities. Our software is uniquely versatile for use in any industry thanks to its flexibility.
Return on Investment for Vehicle Tracking Software
Now that you have a better idea of what goes into the pricing of fleet tracking software, let's dig into exactly how GPS tracking lowers costs. Track Your Truck's platform will help increase your ROI in these six areas.
How does GPS fleet tracking lower costs the most? Fuel is one of the biggest expenses for any fleet, regardless of size or industry. Idling wastes more than 6 billion gallons of fuel per year, costing consumers and businesses $20 billion. Not all idling can be avoided, such as when a vehicle is stuck in traffic near an accident, but a great deal of the waste comes from correctable driver behavior.
GPS tracking allows you to see when and where drivers are letting their vehicles idle. If you find that one driver is frequently idling in your lot before deliveries, you can find out why and correct the behavior.
Fleet tracking also conserves fuel by saving previous route information. Taking the shortest route to a destination can quickly add up to major fuel savings, even if you only reduce routes by half a mile on average.
Employee tracking is central to how GPS tracking lowers costs. Traditionally, fleet managers knew very little about what drivers were actually doing when out on jobs. Employee pay is a huge business expense, and it's fair to want to know that drivers are doing their jobs correctly and efficiently. GPS tracking can quickly reveal when employees are performing poorly. Devices with an accelerometer are particularly valuable in this area.
If, for example, you are suspicious that a driver has dangerous or inefficient habits, you can set their vehicle's device to alert you to jackrabbit starts, hard braking and reckless cornering. Real-time alerts allow you to address these behaviors as soon as they happen, while comprehensive reporting allows you to spot dangerous patterns and work to correct them or produce evidence to support termination.
Alternatively, one of the benefits of fleet tracking is the ability to provide concrete metrics about what good driving looks like, as a benchmark for training new employees and ensuring experienced drivers perform as expected.
Another huge cost savings you get with fleet management software is an accurate payroll. If employees show up 15 minutes late, take an extra half hour for lunch and go home 15 minutes early, yet their payroll is for a full eight hours per day, you're losing money. Driver ID technology allows you to track drivers themselves in addition to vehicles, so you know who is actually driving when.
Modern fleet tracking software will consistently save managers time and allow them to be more productive. No more tracking down drivers to find out where they are and when they'll reach a customer — you can view the location of each vehicle at any time. You don't need to spend time compiling reports because the software does it for you. Fleet tracking takes some of the small stuff off a fleet manager's plate, allowing them to better prioritize and execute on their objectives.
Many managers don't realize the extent of the relationship between fleet tracking and insurance costs. Many companies offer discounts up to 15% and some may even offer an incentive program that pays you to install and implement a tracking system. GPS fleet tracking and insurance rates are closely connected, and it's just one of the ways to save money.
4. Software and Hardware
Track Your Truck goes above and beyond to ensure that our hardware lasts. On average, some devices on the fleet management market can have a lifespan as short as two-years. If you're working with a company that charges per device, this cost can stack up quickly. Track Your Truck's GPS devices user the most current LTE infrastructure, are carrier certified and rigorously tested— ensuring they are far and away more reliable than the rest.
Our commitment to software is just as strong. Because we build all our software solutions in-house, we have the understanding and skill to provide fixes and updates promptly. You can rest assured that both your hardware and software will continue to work for years to come.
Vehicles themselves are costly to maintain. They have to be safe and capable of fulfilling their intended tasks, and having vehicles out of commission can cost your business hundreds of dollars per day. GPS tracking helps reduce the costs associated with vehicle downtime in a few ways.
Idling adds extra, unseen mileage to an engine and can damage the engine over time. The extra wear and tear on the engine can increase the cost of maintenance by nearly $2,000 per year. Idle alerts from Track Your Truck let you know when a vehicle has been idling for longer than the threshold you have chosen, so you can get drivers moving and clamp down on this wasteful behavior.
Wear and tear also results from dangerous driving. Gunning the engine away from a stoplight, braking hard and whipping around corners are all habits that cause unnecessary stress on the vehicle and its many components, leading to more repairs down the line. Poor driving habits also cause accidents, which can increase your insurance costs while putting crucial vehicles out of commission.
6. More Business and Customers
Fleet tracking software can greatly increase customer satisfaction and loyalty. Customers increasingly demand transparency, whether they are receiving a delivery or waiting for a service appointment. When a customer pops in to a live chat or makes a phone call inquiring about the arrival time of their driver, they don't want to wait.
Track Your Truck allows you to pull up a driver's location and estimate their arrival time immediately, getting customers the answers they want and increasing your reputation for excellent service. Additionally, our maplink feature can let customers track vehicles themselves. This feature decreases the time spent fielding arrival inquiries and lets customers feel more in control.
Another benefit to having an employee fleet tracking policy is less damaged cargo. When drivers know their behavior is being monitored, they're less likely to drive in a way that results in crushed and dented boxes, and customers are more likely to receive their items in pristine condition.
Is GPS Fleet Tracking Worth the Investment?
Just how much can Track Your Truck's GPS fleet management system save you? The relationship between your GPS tracking and ROI will depend on several specific factors, including how many minutes vehicles spend idling and how many minutes drivers aren't working per shift. The following examples are just one possible scenario, assuming a fleet size of 15.
- Regained minutes: Assuming employees are making $30 an hour and aren't working for 15 minutes each shift, Driver ID can save your business $2,418.75 monthly.
- Fuel savings: The industry average for fuel savings is 13.2%, so if you spend $2,000 on fuel monthly per vehicle, a GPS tracking software can save your fleet $3,960 each month.
- Insurance savings: If a standard policy is $150 per month per vehicle, an insurance discount for GPS tracking software can save you $337.50 each month.
With just these three considerations taken into account, your business can save more than $80,500 per year. Multiply that by the eight years a Track Your Truck device is expected to last, and you have saved almost $645,000. Whether you're brand new to GPS fleet tracking or are switching over from a less robust service, there is no question that Track Your Truck will save you money and improve your bottom line within months of starting service.
Track Your Truck: The Best Value in the Business
Is GPS fleet tracking worth it? Undoubtedly. Track Your Truck will never be the cheapest name in the GPS tracking game because we will never settle for the cheapest equipment or software. We strive to offer our products and services at fair prices, and we provide the best value in the industry through our unwavering commitment to quality. You will always get top-shelf, certified products and swift, friendly service from our support team — which is more than you can say for many of our competitors.
With a comprehensive suite of features designed for accuracy, you'll have your finger on the pulse of your fleet at all times. You can intervene with poor driving behaviors and solve problems in real-time, while unprecedented reporting software shows you the bigger picture. This combination provides you with all the information you need to make the adjustments that will improve productivity and eliminate areas of waste.
If you're interested in a simple, effective GPS tracking solution at a lower cost, Track Your Truck is the answer. You can request a custom quote tailored to your fleet's needs, or learn how to save money with fleet tracking by requesting a demo.