Telematics Guide

Telematics Guide

Are you looking to manage your fleet more effectively? Fleet telematics could be the key to making savings on your running costs while also enjoying advantages in terms of mileage and time management; safety and security; fuel and emissions.

Here we take a look at fleet telematics in more detail, including telematics systems and telematics insurance.

What is fleet telematics?

Fleet telematics is meant to address the fact that fleet vehicles generally run up their highest costs when on the road: and yet this is the time when fleet managers have little or no control on how they are run.

With telematics systems, a fleet manager can gain vital information about how their vehicles are run and, according to the Energy Saving Trust, some reported results include: a 40-vehicle fleet saving around £400 a month on fuel costs; a company enjoying a 30 per cent increase in staff productivity; and another recording a 60 per cent reduction in speeding and a 20 per cent fall in accidents.

How can fleet telematics benefit your business?

Broadly, there are four ways in which fleet telematics can benefit your business. These are:

- Mileage and time management: Telematics systems can provide fleet managers with information about how and when their vehicles are being driven. This can help ensure that vehicles are serviced at the optimum times; can help identify a vehicle’s location so it can be sent to the nearest appropriate job; can be used to monitor journey patterns to discover the most efficient route; and can help automate time-sheets and other paperwork to cut back on administration costs.

- Fuel and emissions: By using fleet telematics systems wisely, your fleet should be able to reduce its fuel costs and therefore cut its impact on the environment. For example, a telematics system may identify the fuel costs of drivers taking similar journeys and point to best practices: such as a more economical driving style; reducing time spent idling; and so on.

- Safety and security: You could potentially improve safety and security; while also reducing vehicle crime with a telematics system. For example, some systems will identify inappropriate driving: such as speeding or harsh braking and acceleration. Others can raise an alarm about inappropriate vehicle movements, such as if a fleet vehicle were hijacked; and personal safety can also be boosted as some systems come with panic buttons.

- Financial benefits: Perhaps the biggest attraction of telematics systems is their financial benefits. According to figures from the Energy Saving Trust, telematics systems can help reduce operating costs by around 10 per cent thanks to better scheduling, reduced fuel use, higher productivity and smarter vehicle utilisation.

Are there examples of successful fleet telematics systems?

There are actually a host of successful examples of telematics systems being used by fleets.

For example, in 2009, the Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust reported that a tracking device played a huge role in helping to reduce its annual mileage by approximately 220,000miles. Telematics systems have also delivered savings for the Royal Mail: with a report of 8,000 Royal Mail vehicles being fitted with fleet telematics helping to reduce its fuel usage by more than 10 per cent and saving the company approximately £4.4million.

What about telematics insurance?

You may have heard of telematics car insurance, which is growing in popularity in the UK. According to Allied Business Intelligence, around 44million Europeans are expected to have insurance telematics systems in their cars by 2017.

Also known as “black box” car insurance, it records speed patterns as well as the types of roads you use and the distances travelled. Insurers can then use this information to calculate your insurance premiums appropriately. So if, for example, you do not travel during peak hours when accidents are statistically more likely to occur, then you may benefit from car insurance savings. In addition, it should encourage more considerate driving which could help to drive down car insurance premiums for all road users by reducing the volume of accidents.





Features

First drive: Infiniti Q50 2014

Infiniti offers a welcome breeze of fresh thinking and attitude in the small executive sector but does the Q50 match BMW's 3 Series and Mercedes C-Class?

Why the new Mercedes C-Class should have its rivals scared

The arrival of Mercedes’ new C-Class doesn’t so much upset the equilibrium of the compact executive class as restore it to where it should be.

First drive: Seat Leon ST estate 2014

It's the first time in 15 years that the Spanish brand’s C-segment hatch has been offered in estate form but is it any match for the Focus or Golf Estates?

Why RoSPA’s training course will bring out the best in your fleet drivers

The level of awareness required of your driving as part of the RoSPA course means you cannot help but be a better driver by the time you sit the test.

Small cars are making it personal; why that’s good news for company car drivers

Personalisation of cars is here to stay and will only get bigger in the near future, spreading from the small car sector to other parts of the market.

First drive: Nissan Qashqai 2014

No longer a trailblazer, but usefully improved in almost every area, the Qashqai remains the Crossover by which rivals should be judged.

Fleet Voice Column

French carmakers have turned it around, now it’s time to compete globally

Twelve months ago, the French car industry appeared to be fini. Its three main players were all struggling to maintain market share across Europe, never mind grow it and compete with the best of the rest. Citroen, Peugeot…

New Discovery concept suggests the best is yet to come from Land Rover

You didn’t have to traipse all the way to New York for the unveiling of the Land Rover Discovery Vision Concept to know the British SUV firm has a tough time on its hands to replacement this family and business favourite.…

Why cameras should be on the dashboard of every company vehicle

What do you think is the must-have in-car accessory this year? Apps, wifi or voice control? Not if you believe the drastic increase in sales of dash cams, which are being used to protect drivers from insurance scams and…

The answer to inner city congestion lies with smart parking apps

We all know the best way to stop emissions and pollution coming from cars is to have them parked up and not in use. It’s a fine idea and simple in theory, but trying to find a parking space in many congested cities takes…

Why Jaguar’s future plans mean clear victory is the only option

A week ago, this column touched on the forthcoming Jaguar XE compact saloon that will have Audi, BMW and Mercedes all looking nervously across the Channel. At the time of writing, your loyal correspondent was en route to…