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How Construction Companies Can Meet Eco Goals and Optimize Workflows

Vehicle tracking via RFID and other technologies can significantly improve a company's fleet in several critical areas.
By Thomas Goodall
Sep 18, 2019

For construction companies, moving materials and workers between locations can be costly in several key areas. Firstly, the amount of time it takes for journeys to be completed is significant. Secondly, the fuel costs associated with these journeys are substantial. And thirdly, the amount of carbon dioxide produced from these journeys contributes to global warming and can harm a company's eco goal.

One way all of these areas can be improved is by employing business vehicle tracking technology across a commercial fleet. This is done by installing telematics devices inside commercial vehicles and having a central system process all the data produced from these devices. The data can then be analyzed by fleet managers, while improvements to the fleet can be made in the three areas noted above. Vehicle tracking can also be combined with RFID to improve the overall efficiency of a construction company.

Tackling the issue of lengthy journey times may seem particularly challenging because of the factors outside a commercial fleet's control, most notably traffic caused by other road users. There are, however, ways in which vehicle tracking can improve on journey times. The primary way this is accomplished is through analyzing the historical data produced by telematics devices to identify trends and patterns which can then be avoided.

Traffic congestion in specific areas is a major cause of long journey times. By identifying where congestion builds up on particular days and at specific times, fleet managers can plan more efficient routes for their drivers to purposely avoid these areas. In some cases, these routes may be longer in the distance covered and use smaller roads, but they have less traffic and construction. Fleet vehicles can, therefore, reach their destination quicker and more efficiently. This is not only a benefit to the customer who does not have to wait as long for materials or workers to arrive on site, but also for the construction company that may be able to reach more locations in a day by using more efficient routes. Optimizing the workflow of a commercial fleet can have a significant benefit over time, with productivity increasing, which leads to higher revenue for the company.

The second area that is often extremely pricey for construction companies is the cost of fuel for commercial vehicles. Vehicle-tracking technologies offer multiple ways in which this can be improved. As mentioned above, by taking more efficient routes the time required to reach sites can be reduced; however, the amount of fuel used to reach these sites can also be reduced due to less time spent sitting in traffic with the engine idling.

The other way in which vehicle tracking can improve fuel use is through the installation of in-cab coaching devices that alert the driver to behaviors which contribute to high fuel usage. Alerts are triggered by speeding, engine idling, harsh braking and harsh acceleration. By allowing drivers to self-correct their own behavior, construction companies can significantly reduce fuel usage, and this can decrease the associated costs.

Finally, it is common for most companies that operate commercial vehicles to now have eco goals, or sustainability plans, for their fleet. These are targets set for areas such as fuel usage, which are monitored for individual vehicles and the fleet as a whole. Installing vehicle tracking technology allows for the collection and analysis of highly accurate data on such factors as fuel usage. By measuring the fuel usage of a fleet over a period of time, goals can be set for a fleet to work toward.

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