FLEET MANAGEMENT IS ABOUT OPERATIONAL EXCELLENCE
Telematics, training and total cost of ownership should be the top concerns of fleet managers in the business of moving people and goods
Fleet managers are spoilt for choice when it comes to investing in medium and heavy-duty vehicles. Design and technology advancements, fuel efficiency and safety improvements have a big impact on commercial vehicle purchasing decisions. The challenge is ensuring a predictable cost of ownership throughout the vehicle lifecycle.
This expands the scope of fleet management from vehicle operations to load monitoring, driver management, prevention against theft, and driver and road safety.
This month’s cover story features Uae-based telematics service provider Location Solutions. Telematics is often associated with a black box comprising a GPS antenna, SIM card, and integrated with software to measure vehicle location and other parameters as well as driver behaviour in order to ensure uninterrupted movement of people and material. According to Location Solutions, there’s a lot more potential in these systems that haven’t been explored by fleet owners. Location tracking is only a part of what telematics can offer to operators of construction equipment and vehicle fleets. There’s a lot more data that can be acquired to manage the entire operational costs of vehicle or equipment fleets used in construction or logistics, provided they are measured accurately with the appropriate sensors and visualised on a centralised platform to enable faster decision-making. The company is driving its product and market development by focusing on its core competency of software development, to offer solutions customised for markets such as construction.
Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has launched the second phase of installation of remote monitoring systems on heavy vehicles to detects and track the conduct of drivers on roads. The new phase, which started this September will see the installation of remote monitoring devices on trucks exceeding 15 years in service. It aims to improve traffic safety and road security by curbing potential traffic accidents of trucks. Such initiatives are necessary with increase in the number of heavy vehicles on roads, to avoid vehicle damage, road accidents and human casualties.
The special report in this issue explores the commercial vehicle fleet management trends in the Middle East. Technology is helping fleet managers detect risks and inefficiencies in real time to improve fleet safety and productivity. Smart driving with on board computers, in-vehicle monitoring systems (IVMS), and telematics, all of which can be referred to as fleet management technology, has come a long way from simply knowing the location of vehicles. Furthermore, advancements in smartphone and GPS technologies along with high speed internet connectivity have changed the telematics business rapidly. However, technology only forms a part of the overall fleet management strategy. Fleet management is also about preventive maintenance of parts to reduce friction and handle stress, which leads to more mileage from the commercial vehicle and increased productivity.
We also explore the utilisation of mortar machines, which are among the most versatile equipment on a construction site, springing into action after building structures are completed. These indispensable workhorses perform the onsite operations of mixing, conveying and placing mortar for finishing applications on walls and floors, and they have the portability and installation convenience to be operated from anywhere on a construction site. We talk to Putzmeister to find out how the company is expanding the applications of these machines for construction.