Delivery route planning and vehicle tracking software offer massive efficiency gains for fleet operators, as Doherty’s Meats has discovered after deploying the Fleet Geo solution from Vimcar.
Doherty’s Meats, one of Northern Ireland’s leading meat producers, quickly delivers products that often have a short shelf life to customers several times a week and, as delivering to customers is at the core of its business, a high-performance fleet is essential.
To increase efficiency, traceability and fleet management optimisation, the company has recently installed Vimcar Fleet Geo. Fleet Geo is currently in use by more than 90,000 vehicles, and is designed to give small and medium sized business owners control over their fleet.
With this solution in place, Brian McQuaid, Sales and Marketing Manager at Doherty’s Meats, can optimise the routes of his nine-strong fleet and ensure there are no time-wasting overlaps. It also tells him which of his drivers are closest to his customers, so that the company can get to customers all around the country quickly and efficiently. As well as offering massive efficiency gains, the solution also provides security peace of mind with customisable alerts flagging up when vehicles are moved outside of business hours and being misused.
“I can now ascertain whether or not the same vehicles are servicing the same areas and tidy up their route if necessary,” said Brian. “We cover the whole of Northern Ireland so looking at route history is really important for us.”
The benefit that Fleet Geo has had on Doherty’s Meats is testament to the wider sector impact of delivery route planning software. First and foremost, these solutions can review a vehicle’s route to make sure food was delivered to a specified location in a timely manner. It’s crucial that food arrives within a certain time frame to ensure it’s still safe to eat upon delivery and, in the case of fresh packaged products, delivered ahead of sell-by dates and kept at optimum temperatures.
Whether your fleet deals with pizza delivery, grocery delivery or another type of food delivery, food safety is of the utmost importance. Reviewing your fleet’s route history can also help reduce idling times and highlight which routes can be optimised moving forward. This will help save on fuel costs and minimise the numbers of miles your delivery vehicles need to travel.
Although these efficiency, safety and security gains will be among the most obvious and attractive benefits to businesses, vehicle tracking can evolve customer service. On average, the GPS Live Tracking of other fleet management providers refresh every 60 seconds to 2 minutes. With Vimcar, this takes just 20 seconds, ensuring vehicle tracking is as close to real-time as possible. This makes it easy to provide customers with accurate ETAs for deliveries and pickups, thus reducing the waiting and idling on each job.
By tracking your drivers in realtime, you’ll know when drivers are late so you can let customers know when changes to the ETA are made. In addition to tracking your fleet in real-time, vehicle tracking also lets you view each vehicle’s route history with exact coordinates. With this data, you can make adjustments to your fleet’s routes and have a better sense of how often your vehicle is on the road. A well-maintained fleet is less likely to break down en-route or encounter maintenance-caused accidents.