Why Construction Jobs Can Benefit from GPS Tracking and Fleet Management Software
Construction projects and machines go hand-in-hand. Contractors who deploy resources daily across one or many projects navigate a complex network of manpower and machine allocation.
Commercial structures, public buildings, infrastructure projects, new housing developments, and even renovations often require multiple workers, and several types of equipment, vehicles, and storage containers.
GPS (Global Positioning System) vehicle tracking devices that include fleet management software offer a box full of automated, electronic tools to help with equipment and personnel management.
In addition to on and off site vehicle and equipment tracking and theft protection, records generated by GPS tracking can be used to assist with accounting and worksite compliance, reduce paperwork, shorten invoice cycles, and most importantly, save time.
Recent innovations in GPS tracking software for vehicles and equipment include telematics integration, which enables GPS trackers to log and transmit engine activity, power-take-off (PTO) signals and even sudden directional changes.
One important assist is the automation of data entry. Electronic logging of engine on-off hours, fuel purchases, miles driven, and more, eliminate manual data entry errors for related reporting, and provide verifiable logs for accounting and legal purposes.
Whether used to sum up fuel costs, validate payroll, or create compliance reports, electronic data reported and logged via GPS tracking can save project managers, bookkeepers and CPAs a lot of time and hassle year round, and at tax time.
Time Sheet Validation
Hourly time sheets, for example, can be electronically generated for employees hired to operate heavy equipment on site. GPS tracking software can be used to log ignition on-off events, monitor equipment movements, record idle times, and send notifications if equipment is moved out of a specified area.
Better GPS tracking technologies include the ability to map specific operators to specific vehicles with key-fob devices assigned to individuals. The device is activated when plugged into a vehicle by the operator, and deactivated when removed.
Key-fob devices can be used to map a single operator across multiple machines, and to ensure that time-sheet records based on ignition activity are credited to the correct driver.
Similarly, GPS tracking can be used to manage single vehicles across multiple job sites, near or far, making it easy for managers to locate and redirect heavy equipment, materials and personnel to new locations.
Fuel Cost and Tax Tracking
GPS tracking systems can also be used to monitor and generate reports or alerts for fuel usage.
When integrated with fuel cards, GPS software can track fuel purchases electronically, virtually eliminating the need for paper receipts and handwritten expense reports.
Additionally, fuel card integration can help prevent fraud. Fuel card usage can be restricted to specific fuel amounts, or to specific dollar amounts. The number of permissible transactions can be limited for each day, and black-out periods can be set for after hours and weekends.
Better yet, fuel usage combined with fuel purchase reporting can be used to verify costs, and back up expense itemization for tax returns and other financial reports.
For projects that involve transport of equipment or materials across distances, GPS tracking with integrated ProMiles makes it easy to generate electronic, IFTA-compliant trip records that can be used to validate tax records.
ProMiles helps projects comply with state and federal regulations by adjusting calculations automatically when a vehicle moves into a different state, and collecting data that can be used to determine state fuel tax payments.
Work Site Safety & Compliance
For any building project, large or small, worksite safety and municipal code compliance are key to smooth operation and timely completion without extra strain on a budget.
Worker safety rules, local noise ordinances, and even parking restrictions can all be handled efficiently and above board using records and alerts enabled by GPS tracking.
An added bonus is that the same tracking records can be used to prove compliance, if a challenge is ever mounted.
For example, landmark and GeoFence capabilities can be used to protect workers, comply with safety laws and abide by local restrictions. The tools allow managers to map electronic boundaries for jobsite arrivals and departures, and employee vs. equipment parking zones to prevent operators from moving equipment into protected areas.
Movements within and outside of the boundaries thus can be tracked via GPS, and alerts can be sent to managers if the boundaries are crossed.
Using ignition on-off data, alerts can likewise be sent if the equipment is operated past a particular time, providing another valuable tool that benefits both employees and employers.
Theft Prevention and Recovery
One of the biggest problems confronting contractors is the risk of equipment and asset theft. GPS tracking software can be used to alert owners and managers – via ignition on-off activity – if the equipment is powered-up after hours and/or driven offsite.
Non-motorized assets, like storage units and trailers, can be tracked via battery-powered GPS devices.
Additionally, if theft occurs, GPS tracking devices can be used to locate and recover the stolen items.
Using GPS tracking devices and software to deter job site theft can obviously save operations money, but can also lower insurance rates and help legitimize insurance claims and crime reports, if needed.
Money and Time Saved Means Projects get Done on Time and on Budget
Finally, businesses new to GPS tracking, or who simply want to upgrade to a more robust system, may qualify for a Section 179 tax deduction for GPS equipment purchases (check with a CPA about eligibility requirements).
All in all, vehicle trackers combined with telematics and intelligent software makes contemporary GPS tracking and fleet management software one of the most valuable business technologies of the 21st century.
GPS tracking deployment on construction projects helps streamline management, cut costs, maintain budget goals, and improve building completion dates, all factors that contribute to building meaningful structures.
To find out more about how GPS Trackit Vehicle and Equipment Tracking Solutions can help save time and money on construction sites, complete a pricing request form, or call 866-320-5810, to contact a Solutions Specialist.