Article

Geofencing Breaks Efficiency Boundaries

April 2010, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

by Guest Commentary Kirsten Lester, PeopleNet

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Geofencing is a key driver of a paperless environment, with the power to optimize back-office and driver efficiency, customer service, asset protection and safety.
(Photo courtesy of PeopleNet)
(Photo courtesy of PeopleNet)
When integrated with dispatch, routing and other back-office applications, geofencing eliminates paper handling, reduces communications costs, and propels workflow processes to run at top speed. Further, when used with an in-cab scanning service, geofencing drives additional back-office and driver efficiency, which further reduces costs, speeds up cash flow and enhances the bottom line.

Back-Office Bonanza

In an integrated environment, geofencing transforms paper-based operations into an automated, faster paced workplace that eliminates human error and countless hours of manual labor. It also improves driver efficiency and optimizes load scheduling and customer service. The data it sends enables routing software to automatically determine whether all remaining stops on a route can be completed on time on a given day, and readjusts routes and re-assigns stops when necessary. The dispatch software notifies customers of the new schedule and ETAs (estimated time of arrival).

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Exception notifications driven by geofencing keep communication costs down by communicating only when exception events occur, such as an overdue delivery, excessive detention time, etc. Otherwise, geofencing can be configured to store and send data only when needed for customer service and load management.

Advanced Customer Service and Driver Satisfaction

Geofencing with exception notification gives for-hire fleets a strong, cost-effective competitive advantage over traditional, manual dispatch operations. Communicating changes in delivery times ahead of ETA and giving customers online access to delivery status helps them prepare for deliveries.

Driver Efficiency and Satisfaction

Driver performance and satisfaction go hand in hand. The highest performing drivers understand how geofencing minimizes paper-handling time, so they can drive and earn more:
* Pre-announced ETAs minimize driver detention by allowing customers to prepare for delivery.
* Eliminates manual delivery confirmation by providing pre-populated electronic forms.
* With in-cab scanning, no additional time and costly out-of-route miles to scan or mail paper documents.

Improved Cash Flow, Accounting Costs

With an in-cab scanner connected to a smart device in the cab, geofencing lets drivers and back-office personnel skip handling paper documents days and weeks after load completion. The driver scans in the signed delivery receipt, and is prompted to identify which stop the document is associated with. The geofencing software aligns the information associated with that stop (customer number, location and order or bill of lading, and other load information), immediately indexes it into the workflow, and provides confirmation that indexing was accomplished at a specific time and place.

Invoices are generated faster to speed up payment. Automated indexing reduces hard cost of traditional truckstop scanning and outsourced indexing by approximately 25 percent in addition to soft costs.

Kirsten Lester is a product manager at PeopleNet, which provides Internet-based and integrated onboard computing and mobile communications systems to improve North America's trucking industry's fleet management. More information about the company may be found on the company web site at www.peoplenetonline.com or by calling 888-346-3486.


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