Keeping fleets on track
31 March 2015
Andy Kirk, sales & marketing director at Quartix, explains how telematics systems can help cleaning companies to improve efficiency and driver safety across their fleet operations
Telematics systems are powerful tools for transforming day-to-day operations for commercial fleets across the cleaning and maintenance industries. The breadth of data provided by telematics is proven to be an efficient and measurable way of reducing fuel consumption and improving vehicle routing. Indeed, the benefits of vehicle tracking are evident for many operators looking to save fuel, time and money as well as improve the safety of their drivers and customers, and reduce their CO2 emissions.
Reduce costs & accidents
key feature to help you reduce fuel consumption is Quartix’s Driving-Style Monitoring suite. The module monitors and reports on acceleration, braking and speeding, giving fleet managers the ability to make substantial fuel savings whilst dramatically improving the safety of their drivers and others.
Drivers who accelerate and brake harshly cost a business much more than those who do not. Harsh braking not only wastes fuel and increases servicing costs (tyres, brakes, etc.) but is also known to be a driving style which leads to an increased risk of accidents, which is why managers are now seeing monitoring good driving as a top priority.
You can make real fuel savings by using the system and working with your drivers to improve driving style and reduce idling times. Reducing top speeds by 10mph alone could cut 8-9% off the fuel bill, and modifying the acceleration and braking style could cut a further 6% off the bill. The savings mentioned are made exclusively by improving driver behaviour – reducing idling will mean further savings. It is widely recognised that a diesel engine left running idle will consume around one gallon of fuel per hour, so cutting down on this practice could mean valuable cuts on the fuel front.
'Use carrot, not stick'
To encourage their drivers to adopt a more economical and safer driving style, managers have found that using carrots, not sticks, often works best. Giving incentives to better drivers and rewarding top performers, who are easily identifiable thanks to league tables on the Quartix system, has shown to be one of the most effective ways. Without singling any drivers out, another method is to look at the score average across the fleet and working with the team to increase it.
Several cleaning companies have found Quartix beneficial for their business. Specialist group City & Kent Cleaning says they’ve become more efficient since integrating telematics into their fleet operations. Managing director Ian Pether sees the Quartix system to be especially valuable given the group’s continued expansion.
He says: "The growth across all of our divisions, specifically in the supply of cleaning chemicals, janitorial supplies and cleaning machinery from our South London warehouse, necessitated an expansion of our delivery fleet and a need for better logistical control."
He continues: "Using the Quartix features we are able to closely monitor vehicle movements, anticipate any delivery delays, arrange alternative routes and monitor driver mileage/driver productivity. These features have bolstered our operational efficiency dramatically."
Edinburgh-based cleaning outfit Greig Avinou National Window Cleaning have also had a positive experience with Quartix, with MD Greig Avinou citing the system as "a valuable tool, verifying our attendance and time-on-site".
Furthermore, Quartix has recently released a new mobile app which enables users to view the real-time location of their vehicles and access the core features of the system whilst on the move. The app is free to download on the App Store, Google Play and Windows Phone Store.