GPS Tracking Benefits for Construction Fleets
In your personal life, you probably use Global Positioning System (GPS) technology in two important ways, even if you aren’t aware of it: route planning and device locating. That little voice coming from your phone that tells you to make a right turn at the light? That’s GPS technology in action. When you log into a website to push a button and find your phone? That’s GPS, too.
At work, GPS technology has a broad range of applications and can provide support to construction industry business owners and fleet operators, who have much to manage when aiming for success. Safety, reliability, and accuracy are all critical profitability components. Overseeing employees, determining schedules and routes to maximize efficiency and minimize fuel costs, allocating resources, and preventing and responding to equipment theft are all everyday parts of the job. Implementing GPS tracking in your construction industry fleet can streamline these tasks and boost your bottom line.
How does GPS Tracking work?
GPS stands for Global Positioning System. No one knows the answer to this question better than NASA, which says, “GPS is a system of 30+ navigation satellites circling Earth. We know where they are because they constantly send out signals. A GPS receiver in your phone or another device.
listens for these signals. Once the receiver calculates its distance from four or more GPS satellites, it can figure out where you are.”
GPS doesn’t just know where you are. It can be used to determine where your employees and equipment are as well. Supervisors can also use GPS to calculate speed and other information related to the safe operation of vehicles.
How does GPS improve safety in construction?
Every day, construction industry employees are responsible for moving and operating heavy equipment, making work in the field among the most dangerous in the nation. According to a 2011 statement by Dr. David Michaels, the Assistant Secretary of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, “Construction is among the most dangerous industries in the country.” One in five of every work-related fatality in the US that year was in the construction field, and 25% of those deaths were transportation-related.
Unfortunately, while time has passed since Dr. Michaels spoke to Congress, construction projects remain perilous to those in the industry and the community at large. It is as critical as ever that these professionals drive their trucks carefully and at the speed limit. GPS tracking can help owners and managers protect their business’s reputation by enabling them to remotely supervise behaviors such as speeding, sudden lane changes, tailgating, and hard braking. Integrating driver-facing dash cams and artificial intelligence can enhance this monitoring and assist drivers in recognizing and correcting dangerous driving.
If an accident or other safety incident does occur despite all efforts toward safety, GPS tracking can provide lawyers with data-driven evidence that may prevent or resolve a potentially devastating lawsuit.
Can GPS support vehicle maintenance for construction fleets?
GPS can also help managers keep accurate records of each vehicle’s mileage, providing the information necessary to track maintenance needs such as tire rotations, oil changes, and more, ensuring that each truck in the fleet is in the best possible condition. GPS tracking in construction can also alert owners and managers to scheduled maintenance needs, facilitating the preventative care that keeps trucks in service.
Does GPS improve reliability in construction?
No one likes to be disappointed. It used to be that, if construction workers were not on site as anticipated, a business owner or manager could expect an angry phone call from a client. Now, unhappy customers are more likely to take their frustration to the internet, where they might leave a negative review on social media.
Construction customers need to be able to trust that the workers they expect will be on site as scheduled. The best way to deliver on that promise is with GPS tracking. With GPS, fleet managers can help their team plan a route to the job site and avoid traffic or other unexpected delays. GPS can also increase reliability by ensuring that staff is aware that management knows how they are spending their time. Long breaks at the gas station for “smokes and Cokes” or extended lunches – while the truck idles and burns fuel – won’t go unnoticed any longer.
Is it possible to save money with GPS?
Implementing GPS tracking in a construction fleet will require an initial outlay, but business owners can expect to recoup that investment relatively quickly. How? Not only will carefully-planned routes cut down on fuel consumption and reduce idle time, but GPS tracking can reduce loss to theft.
The National Equipment Register (NER) estimates that as much as one billion dollars worth of construction equipment is stolen in the United Stated annually, less than 25% of which is ever recovered. Following a theft, business owners such as Skyler Hansen of the Utah-based B. Hansen Company lost valuable time dealing with the aftermath. In November, thieves got away with a half-million dollars worth of his equipment. Not only did Hansen have to figure out how to recover or replace his equipment, without the necessary gear, but he also lost time to insurance paperwork and police reports and found himself unable to send his team to work. Mechanic Ray Crawford has spent hours driving and searching for the company’s property instead of doing his job. He said, “We’re trying to find [the thieves] and we are trying to find our equipment and I’ve been going out every night looking.”
At first, it might not seem that the beauty and construction industries have much in common, but consider this: In June of this year, a Las Vegas Man was arrested for stealing over $77,000 worth of high-end products from the cosmetics chain Ulta. Police were able to track him because some of the boosted items contained GPS trackers. If the perfume is worth protecting with a GPS tracker, isn’t a $100,000 backhoe or a tower crane worth over a million dollars?
If you’d like to learn more about how GPS Trackit can help to improve safety, increase productivity and reduce costs for your business, speak with one of our knowledgeable Fleet Advisors at 866-320-5810 or get a quick Custom Quote.
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