It is the era of digitalization and automation. While fully-automated trucks are going to take eons to come into effect, a certain amount of automation now is definitely necessary for the seamless functioning of logistics. Be it embedded analytics or machine learning, the trucking sector is surely ready for a fair amount of automation.
Logistics in itself is a pretty complicated business to be in, and every logistics fleet has its own set of challenges to deal with. Technology makes facing challenges less complicated and hassle-free for business owners. It also enables them to have a clearer perspective of change.
While the most obvious reasoning for adapting technology in this sector is to alleviate hassle, the more profound one is to make it more competitive and advanced. A business owner would surely invest in a technology that gives his fleet of trucks a competitive edge over his competitors.
This means that one must look beyond the obvious ones and look for those add-ons and technology additives that can make their fleet superior over others. That being said, it is also important to check for its relevance and the value-addition it gives to the trucking business.
As most of the tech adaptations require a lot of diligence, up-front investment, training, and other hidden costs, they are not easily reversible. Business owners must hence do it with the utmost care and have a clear pathway and implementation strategy. Implementing technologies that can quickly turn obsolete will only prove to be a big loss to the business.
7 top strategies that can easily automate the trucking business:
Keeping these things in mind, here are 7 top strategies that can easily automate the trucking business:
IoT or the Internet of things can have a revolutionary impact on the trucking business. It can network the fleets with a variety of devices that can share data amongst them and help in tracking vehicles more efficiently. This can help the carriers and logistics team to make a more informed decision when any situation arises. It also minimizes the need for human intervention to a great extent.
Using IOT, fleet owners can track and manage their freights and get constant alerts about any possible shocks, temperature drops, and dynamic routing and re-routing in case of sudden disturbances in the traffic pattern.
Dynamic routing can help the business owners save a lot of time in transit and quickly find an alternate/quicker route during traffic congestion, natural calamity, and other such disturbances using the automatically updated GPS routes.
2. Client Selection And Real-Time Information
Many a time, trucks drive empty, especially after dropping off their shipment as they can €™t book cargo directly. This leads to a lot of fuel wastage. However, when the freight management system is automated, fleet owners can inform the drivers about freight-sharing options available in their vicinity.
The automated client selection can also help fleet owners to get access to posted requirements and mobilize the necessary resources with ease. When a business has a requirement for a certain number of trucks/fleet for their business needs, the logistics company can immediately mobilize their nearest fleet to the client location to speed their process and minimize any delays.
This way, they can also save a lot of time and fuel resources, which would otherwise be wasted on the transit. They can also provide their clients with real-time information about the location of their freight during transit.
3. Automated Telematics To Track Drivers
Using structured telematics, scorecard technology, and driver AI, truck fleet owners can recreate and analyze situations were drivers face a problem during their operation. It can also help them analyze bad driving behavior that could potentially hamper the overall maintenance cost of the truck. When coupled with 360-degree swivel cameras that operate even at night, a fleet owner can eradicate false insurance claims from a third party.
Such devices can help in replaying the actual accident scene and be used to defend the driver/fleet owner in case of any untoward accidents during transit. You can read more about the safety enhancements you can make for your business at Samsara safety.
4. Log Tracking And Productivity Management
For a logistics company, drivers are the biggest assets, and it is extremely crucial that they have all the right information at all times to work effectively. Having an app that can track their login hours, productive time can help the fleet owners keep a tab on their workforce and manage their workflow with ease. It can also improve the driver €™s work experience through specially tailored configuration options and open APIs.
5. Reefer Tracking
Automating the reefer container tracking process would prevent product spoilage or wastage during transit. It would provide the freight owners with instant alerts with regards to any possible temperature drops, and device malfunctioning using powerful sensors planted on the trucks. This also eliminates the need for continuous manual temperature logging and recording from time-to-time.
6. Asset Tracking And Management
Many fleet solutions providers like Samsara provide efficient tracking software to track and manage your assets. It can help the fleet owners in tracking engine hours, mileage covered, maintenance data, and a detailed inventory reporting coupled with location history. It can also help them in tracking their dormant assets (both powered and unpowered) present in their trucks. These devices are very small and can be easily camouflaged inside the vehicles.
7. Documentation And Message Tracking
If a fleet owner wants to provide exceptional customer service, they must definitely invest in cloud-based documentation and real-time data-entry automation for their fleet. With this, one can easily upload and retrieve documents like customer invoices, payroll details, overage or damage claims, and missed delivery timelines. Drivers can also take notes and capture e-signatures without having to carry and manage piles of paperwork during delivery.
It is important for logistics businesses to invest in the right kind of automation to make their business competitive and sustainable. Automation, however big or small, must be easy to carry out and useful in the long run to be termed as an asset for a trucking business. Samsara is a company that helps trucking businesses across countries to conduct sustainable, efficient, and safe logistics operations through IoT and on an open platform.