U.S. Markets closed

Today's Pickup: More Fleets Use Telematics, But Few Utilize Its Full Capabilities


Good day,

The digital revolution may not be happening as fast as we think. According to the results of a new survey, 36% of transportation businesses still rely primarily on manual processes to forecast hiring needs, and only 23% use big data analytics to guide strategic decision-making.

Those are some of the findings from Teletrac Navman's third annual Telematics Benchmarking Report: U.S. Edition. Teletrac Navman is a global software-as-a-service provider that uses location-based technology for GPS tracking solutions.

The report did find that 86% of fleets are now using a telematics service, but most still lack a data-driven approach to managing their business. Given a list of 12 telematics features, Teletrac Navman found that companies used an average of only three telematics features to measure general vehicle status metrics like vehicle and equipment location (74%), hours of service (66%) and speed (61%), as opposed to measurements that could meaningfully impact their bottom line, like idling (37%) and fuel usage (30%).

"This year's survey results reveal there's a big difference between being a tech-compliant organization and a tech-driven one," said Sid Nair, senior director of transport and compliance, Teletrac Navman. "Putting ELDs in vehicles is not a silver bullet and, ultimately, won't help fleets solve their business challenges as the transportation and logistics industry becomes ever more competitive. Using data effectively is the key to making your fleet work smarter, not harder, but managers can only reap these benefits if they look beyond using technology strictly for compliance and commit to using data to inform important business decisions – ones that can boost productivity and minimize expenses. That's the true meaning of digital transformation."

The trend over the survey's time, though, is positive for telematics use. In 2017, the first year the survey was conducted, only 48% of fleets said they used telematics; that rose to 82% last year and 86% this year.

The wide-ranging survey also found:

  • While 66 percent use ELDs to track HOS, 24 percent admitted to still using paper logs despite it being law not to and 19 percent are using AOBRDS.
  • ELDs continue to be fleets' top compliance concern (58%), but the percentage is down significantly from 2018 (74%).
  • Nearly a third (29%) report there is no driver concern around ELDs.

Benefits of utilizing a telematics system to its full potential are highlighted in the report, with 42% of fleets seeing fewer safety incidents once they started monitoring driver behavior. More than a quarter cite driver monitoring (32%), speed prevention (26%) and preventing driver fatigue/exhaustion (30%) as top telematics-related safety benefits.

The 2019 Teletrac Navman Benchmark Survey includes responses from more than 500 participants in transportation and general telematics in the U.S.

Did you know?

The average respondent in Teletrac Navman's third annual Telematics Benchmarking Report: U.S. Edition believes it will be 9.1 years before autonomous driving will impact business.


"As an economist, I am careful about claiming something is a shortage, what this really involves is that the market is broken somehow...[and the] quantity of labor demanded is constantly exceeding labor supply."

-Kristen Monaco, associate commissioner at the Bureau of Labor Standards and author of a BLS report stating there is no truck driver shortage

In other news:

Florida building autonomous car testing facility

Florida has started work on a facility to allow for autonomous cars to be tested. (NBC2)

Is the workforce ready for mobility jobs?

With predictions that mobility will generate more than 100,000 jobs in the next 10 years, the question becomes if society is ready for those jobs. (Middle Market Growth)

Trump: China will buy agricultural products

President Donald Trump said that China has agreed to purchase large quantities of U.S. agricultural products ahead of trade talks. (CNBC)

Rail art hopes to highlight freight transport

Noah's Train, said to be the longest mobile work of art in the world, will make a stop in Rotterdam in October as it seeks to highlight freight cargo transport. (Hellenic Shipping News)

Spartan Motors acquires truck manufacturer

Spartan Motors has purchased Royal Truck Body, a Carson, California, manufacturer of work trucks. (Lansing State Journal)

Final Thoughts

The annual Teletrac Navman Telematics Benchmarking Report: U.S. Edition, released today is always filled with nuggets of information. This year's edition finds that while most trucking fleets are now utilizing telematics in some manner, few are taking advantage of the systems' full capabilities. On average, only 3 out of 12 features identified were being used by survey participants. This despite the fact that most respondents reported cost savings for the features they use. There could be many reasons for this, but the sheer volume of data available and the expertise needed to understand it are two barriers.

Hammer down everyone!

Image Sourced from Pixabay

See more from Benzinga

© 2019 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.