Fleet management is the management of commercial vehicles owned by an organization to improve productivity and cost-effectiveness without compromising on safety and customer satisfaction. Fleet management software provides a single real-time dashboard to fleet managers to manage performance and maintenance, so that fleet operations run smoothly.
Benefits of Fleet Management
Fleet management software enables fleet managers to have a real-time view of vehicle movement and location, driver performance, fuel consumption, and potential delays.
Fleet management software can ensure:
Compliance with regional driving regulations before the start of a trip
Better driver safety, performance, and satisfaction
Less paperwork, decreasing error margins, and scope for interference
Real-time tracking of fixed as well as mobile assets
Fuel consumption optimization
Greater customer satisfaction
How to Choose the Best Fleet Management Software
When shopping for the best fleet management software, ensure that the option you choose has these core features:
Driver management refers to monitoring and measuring essential driving parameters like acceleration, harsh braking, speeding, and over-idling. When you share feedback on them with the drivers, they can take corrective measures to help:
Improve driver efficiency and productivity
Decrease chances of accidents
Lower fuel consumption
Better vehicle performance
When you invest in developing good driving habits, driver retention also increases.
Vehicle management may include a GPS vehicle tracking system and a fleet alarm system.
GPS Tracking System. GPS vehicle tracking enables fleet managers to access the real-time locations of their vehicles. This allows them to know where vehicles are at any given point in time as well as whether they are moving, idling, or parked. GPS tracking helps fleet managers optimize productivity and provides accurate information to customers about estimated delivery times, enhancing overall customer experience. Most fleet management platforms offer GPS tracking through the driver’s phone.
Fleet Alarm System. A fleet alarm system can notify you of issues while your vehicles are in operation. For instance, an alarm system may notify a driver to turn off their engine if they have been stopped with the engine running for a long period of time. This can help to reduce the waste of fuel. If the driver does not turn off the engine, the fleet manager can receive a notification as well to contact the driver.
Fleet operations management features include route planning and monitoring, fuel management, and task management:
Route planning and monitoring. Fleet management software helps in route optimization by analyzing past performances for the logged trips as well as anticipating future events. This helps in faster arrival times and a better customer experience.
Fuel management. Fuel costs form a major part of a fleet operations budget. Route optimization automatically leads to better fuel consumption, lowering costs.
Task management. Operations management optimizes vehicles, drivers and routes to ensure that each order is fulfilled as soon as possible, resulting in a better customer experience. Fleet management software provides the real-time location of each product. So, in case of delays, customers can be alerted in time and if need be, compensated accordingly.
Fleets do not operate in isolation. They must fully integrate with all other business activities. Your fleet management software should be capable of integrating seamlessly with other business tools like CRM and inventory management. Mobile apps for the fleet management tool can help drivers enter real-time data after each delivery, which automatically updates the status at all other instances.
Fleet management can make it easier to manage inventory for you, be it parts needed for fleet maintenance or products being delivered. Mobile apps for drivers can be directly linked to inventory levels so that the status is updated as parts are used or products are delivered. In some cases, a platform can even file orders for you automatically once stock on certain items reaches a low enough level.
Forbes Advisor set out to determine the best fleet management software by comparing each company on a variety of factors, including cost, must-have features, and value for the money. We scored each software on a 5-star ranking system, with the highest score being 5 out of 5 stars.
Here’s what we considered for each category in our ranking:
Cost and fees. Fleet management software with free trials or low-cost starter plans was given more credit than those that are more expensive. Those that offered full features on lower tiers were also given more preference than those that withhold features until the highest tier.
General features. There are some features that must be present to be considered the best fleet management software, such as real-time location tracking, service history tracking, and document management. Those that also offer maintenance alerts, dispatching, and route tracking were scored higher, too.
Ease of use. We also looked at the learning curve for each fleet management software solution because if you can’t adopt the software quickly, you’re less likely to use it. Installation of hardware should be easy to do yourself or included with your plan.
Customer support. Finally, we considered what current customers had to say about each fleet management program. Software companies that offer 24/7 support scored higher, too.
Track the movement of school buses anytime, anywhere
Monitor unauthorized trips into entry-restricted areas
RFID integration to track the entry & exit of students
Report the location of the student to the parents
Avoid reporting delays to parents
Respond better during bus breakdowns
Identification of aggressive driving habits
Manage fleet maintenance schedules efficiently
Alerts through email & SMS for violations
Alerts via email & SMS for student’s entry/exit
High-quality digital mapping to display bus routes & stops
Intelligent reports on fleet utilization and much more