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Factors Preventing The Implementation Of Vehicle Tracking Systems

Aug 14, 2008
Vehicle tracking systems are becoming an increasingly important part of the fleet management business. As GPS and other location technologies have developed, these systems have not only become more accurate but also more affordable. There are however many fleet managers out there who are still unsure whether a vehicle tracking system would really help improve the efficiency and profitability of their business.

One of the reasons why some of these fleet managers have not yet implemented vehicle tracking systems is because they feel that they have a trustworthy staff and do not have to keep an eye on them. Fundamentally they do not understand the ultimate purpose of a vehicle tracking system, it is not the encroachment of 'Big Brother' but instead is a way for companies to improve their operations by reducing fuel costs, maintenance expenditure and insurance premiums.

An adjunct to this belief is that if a vehicle tracking system is implemented the staff members will respond with union action. Once again this is down to a belief that these systems are 'Big Brother' in disguise. This viewpoint is ultimately incorrect, once staff members are given an understanding of how a tracking system will make their jobs easier, any resistance is soon quelled. Staff members will find reduced amounts of paperwork and less hours spent on the road after implementation, subsequently realising that there are benefits that outweigh the fear of supervision.

Technophobia is definitely one of the reasons preventing many fleet managers from implementing vehicle tracking systems. The belief that they are difficult to install and use is prevalent, although through education this situation is changing. Normally companies will supply an expert to help with installation. The system requires a GPS device in every vehicle and a computer back at the headquarters although depending on the system used, the installation can differ. This expert should also be able to help with training operators how to use the system most effectively.

As well as the fear of technology, many fleet managers are happy using the system already in place. This may incorporate mobile phone technology but ultimately this is a poor system compared with modern variants. Using mobile phones is unrewarding as a way to track employees; it is easy to lie at the end of a phone. Additionally, using mobiles does not give the fleet manager information on the car mileage or the maintenance schedule. As well as this, a GPS system will give up to the minute information on vehicle whereabouts and direction. Fundamentally a GPS system is an all encompassing solution to tracking requirements.

Confusion is another reason why some fleet managers have not yet made the investment in a vehicle tracking system. With so many different varieties on the market today this is understandable. For the fleet manager however, making an assessment of their business' needs is an essential part of finding the right system. Added to this is the investment that a tracking system requires, some can be expensive although through hard bargaining it is possible to receive a good deal. In terms of price and payment it should be remembered that most vehicle tracking systems are more like a service rather than a product, understanding that a monthly charge will normally be applicable is essential.

Hopefully this information will help those fleet managers out there who are still unsure whether to implement a GPS vehicle tracking system or not. If technophobia, confusion over pricing and fear of surveillance can be overcome, implementation should be a painless process resulting in amore streamlined, efficient and profitable business.
About the Author
Technology expert Thomas Pretty looks into the myths surrounding vehicle tracking systems and how businesses can benefit from implementation.
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