The focus of fleet management software will continue to shift in 2017 to facilitate organisations’ intelligent utilisation of a wider variety of both internal and externally-generated data, believes Chevin Fleet Solutions.
The continual development of mobile and automotive technologies – such as telematics, autonomous vehicles and connected cars – means more data than ever is being generated relating to fleet vehicles, equipment, staff and other types of assets.
With fleet operations under continuing pressure to keep costs down and reduce workloads and reduce deadlines to a minimum, many have increasingly been recognising the potential of using new types of existing or potentially-available, disparate data in their fleet management software to help streamline processes, improve efficiency and reduce expenditure, says Chevin.
The fleet management software provider anticipates an ongoing trend for improved utilisation of ‘big data’ this year.
Ashley Sowerby, managing director of Chevin, said: “Increasing amounts of data generated both internally and externally have proven to be of great interest for fleet managers who recognise the potential of using it to help make better operational decisions.
“Of course, it’s not simply about collecting volumes of information – the key to efficiently utilising ‘big data’ in fleet management is to identify what information is most useful and then bring it together for reporting and analysis.
“Simply asking the question, ‘to what end this data can be used’ or ‘how could we enhance our fleet operations by bringing existing internal or external information together using fleet management software?’ can be a powerful enabler.”
Meanwhile, with an increasing variety of data being generated externally by telematics systems, fuel cards, maintenance service providers, parts suppliers and fleet management companies as well as tax, title and registration and driver management solutions, Chevin believes ease of integration will also prove to be a key trend of 2017.
“With so much information potentially available – often coupled with stringent deadlines, administration or cost constraints - the process of integrating data from third-party applications and service providers into fleet management software should never be difficult or time-consuming,” added Sowerby.
Additional in the company’s predictions for 2017 is an increased use of mobile devices to help with management of operations and maintenance within fleets – as smart phones and tablets, according to Chevin, can be effectively used as employee management tools if they are intelligently linked to a fleet management system.
Mobile devices can be used to help manage almost any kind of operational activity, from providing load, pick-up and delivery details and route information to drivers, or collecting inspection, maintenance or audit information from drivers, workshops, job sites and more.