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Using telematics to improve fleet utilization

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While fleets have a vast and increasing amount of data at their disposal for making more informed equipment and maintenance choices, information only enables improvements in efficiency and productivity if it’s truly actionable and is presented in a context where it can be used effectively and strategically.

“Only by leveraging the right technology can you combine data from different sources in ways that provide real benefits,” says Michael Riemer, vice president of product and channel marketing at Decisiv. The cloud-based Decisiv Service Relationship Management (SRM) platform is now the standard for service event management at more than 1,500 fleets with over 500,000 assets, and at more than 3,000 dealers and service providers as well as many call/breakdown centers and leasing and contract management providers. “Effectively combining truck performance and diagnostic health data with fleet maintenance information can definitely improve asset utilization.

“As a growing number of OEMs incorporate telematics with remote diagnostic capabilities in trucks, fleets are exploring ways to use the information to their advantage,” Riemer continues. “Many fleets use telematics data to enhance routing and scheduling, and to monitor and improve driver behavior. Those uses yield real benefits, but integrated diagnostic information can play an ever bigger role in improving asset utilization rates.”

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Riemer goes on to suggest three ways telematics with remote diagnostics capabilities can maximize uptime:

1) Improving preventive maintenance scheduling: Using telematics to track mileage and engine hours (and even fuel consumption) will help ensure higher compliance rates with preventive maintenance schedules. With meter data automatically captured on a regular basis, you will be alerted when an asset approaches or passes the threshold for the next maintenance event.

2) Making fault codes relevant: With telematics and Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs) from remote diagnostics systems, you know if a truck encounters an issue that requires immediate attention. The key is to ensure that you receive only critical alerts with information, including fault level severity with guidance on how quickly the repair is required and preferably a recommended repair plan or triage process based on the most likely cause.

3) Streamlining repair events: Telematics and remote diagnostics data is most valuable not as an email or a phone call but as part of an end-to-end closed loop process leveraging an OEM call center, online communication and collaboration, and a simplified process for service scheduling based on the location and availability of service providers. When the service supply chain including the dealer/service provider are part of the process, triage time can be reduced more than 70% and downtime by more than 20%.

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“By connecting telematics and remote diagnostics systems to an SRM platform, you’re able to leverage critical data to make the best maintenance and repair decisions,” Riemer says. “Enabling communication and collaboration with in-context access to key information eliminates the headaches, stress and frustration with email and phone-based approaches to improve asset utilization.

“Decisiv’s SRM platform is already integrated with telematics and remote diagnostics solutions from Volvo Trucks North America, Mack Trucks, and Hino Trucks,” Riemer says. “What all of these integrations have in common is that they provide visibility into asset performance and health, as well as transparency and real-time information during service and repair events.

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