Telematics is a combination of two terms: informatics and telecommunications. In a broad sense, telematics refers to the integrated use of information and telecommunications technology. It allows a user to store, receive, and send information relating to remote entities – such as vehicles – through a telecommunication device.
Fleet telematics is a more focused way to monitor the behavior, status, movement, and location of a vehicle within a fleet – fleet tracking. This feat is achieved by combining an electronic GSM device and GPS receiver. These devices then communicate with the user via a web-based software. Some of the benefits that this solution provides include: unauthorized vehicle use prevention, increased fleet safety, efficiently control fuel costs, enhanced productivity, and more.
However, telematics still get a bad reputation in some ways. From being like a Big Brother to being too expensive and etc. That’s why we felt the need to debunk some common telematics myths!
Myth #1: Using Telematics Causes Frustration
This is currently the most common myth. Yet, there is some truth to it. There are drivers that experience frustration when interacting with telematics. However, telematics are designed to help your company make money, enable your drivers to do a better job, and more. It would be a waste to pass up on this opportunity just because some of your drivers displayed displeasure over the implementation of a new workflow. Hey, they may be the ones who are doing something wrong and probably do not want you to find out!
Myth #2: All Telematics Systems are Scalable and Automatically Adapt to Your Business
When it comes to telematics solutions, there is no one above all. Not every solution is scalable and fleets may eventually grow out of their provider due to limited functionalities. There is nothing to worry about this though. Simply look out for a solution that has all the capabilities you are seeking right now. In addition, make sure your choice of telematics also come with add-ons that enable it to grow with your business, when the time comes.
Myth #3: Telematics is an Unnecessary Luxury
Well, it is normal for many fleet managers and owners to feel surprised about the initial upfront investment, which is pretty substantial. However, the cost of owning telematics starts to spread out evenly over the long term, i.e. it allows you to enjoy more savings down the road. When you speak with potential providers, do not hesitate to get them to explain more about the initial investment, and then how you will save more than that. People tend to complain that telematics is costly when they are not getting their desired ROI.
Myth #4: Cheaper Telematics Software is Better
No, no, and no. Price should never be the main driving factor in your final decision. Oftentimes, cheap solutions only offer basic software and hardware. You need to put the square block in the square hole, i.e. find a solution that fits your specific business goals and needs. Only then, you can enjoy a better ROI. Anyway, better telematics software is more expensive because they become your long-term valued business partner, provide top-notch customer service, and are much more reliable.
Myth #5: There is Only One Type of Telematics Technology
It is almost impossible to find two telematics providers that are exactly the same. If you do sufficient research, you will discover that there is a wide variety of choices when it comes to dashboards, alerts, reports, features available, hardware, software, and more.