Venson Automotive Solutions is urging businesses to prepare for the impact that the connected car will have on the fleet sector.
The ‘connected car’ is forecast to be the third fastest growing technological device, after the mobile phone and tablet, with technology giants such as Apple, Google and Microsoft viewing the automotive sector as an expansion opportunity.
“It’s clear that technology is set to transform the motoring sector over the next few years and we’re urging fleet managers to be prepared for the changes,” said Simon Staton, director of client management at Venson Automotive Solutions.
“Connected vehicles allow businesses to access even more driver and vehicle data, but firms will need to get the support of their staff and should consider the wealth of legal issues it will create.”
With more driver and fleet apps available in the market, Venson supports the BVRLA’s calls for businesses to check employee contracts to ensure that existing guidance includes connected vehicles, as well as smart phones and tablets.
In addition, fleet managers need to ensure they comply with the latest data protection and even human rights legislation, when it comes to the intelligence collected and stored by connected vehicles.
Staton said: “To ensure the new wave of connectivity and web-based telematics reaches its full potential, it’s essential that drivers buy into the benefits.
"This means businesses have to provide assurances that the data and intelligence they gather is used wisely.
"Monitoring and harnessing information from vehicle diagnostics to support proactive servicing and maintenance and driving behaviour analysis for fuel efficiency and road safety, is all part of the fleet management process.
"However, drivers expect to be able to keep their personal lives private, as well as being entitled to a degree of privacy at work.
“If employers wish to monitor their employees, they should be clear about the purpose and this should be justified by the real benefits it delivers.
"The BVRLA offers guidelines for businesses keen to operate best practice, when it comes to the connectivity of their fleet.
"Firms need to act now to ensure their business and their drivers are protected.
"Crucially, everyone who accesses vehicle and driver data, has a responsibility to ensure that it is treated securely and with appropriate permissions.”