Car Telematics

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Since the inception of and subsequent growth in recent years, one quarter of all company cars are fitted with some form of telematic device. Yet despite the decreasing cost and large insurance savings, most Fleet Managers decide to stay well clear of any such technology.
Car Fleet

Fleet Managers cite legal concerns and a lack of resources are becoming major reasons why they decide against implementing telematics systems: if the data shows they have a driver who regularly speeds, they feel they do not have the time to act on the results.

Consequently, if that driver had an accident and the police analyse the telematics data, the business would be held culpable for effectively permitting such driving behaviour.

Is legal standpoint even relevant in modern organisations? Most companies, whatever their size, will include terms in the employment contract stating that drivers must adhere to the law. Any actions outside of the law will invalidate the employee contract and make them culpable for their own actions.

With all of the positives that can arise from telematics, what are the other reasons why Fleet Managers simply avoid such systems? To summarise in one word, 'tracking'.

Tracking is a word with such negative connotations throughout organisations. It suggests a lack of trust, big brother events and all round negative feelings. However it is an accepted concept within the commercial vehicle sector. Whilst many workers are not particularly keen on the idea of being 'monitored', most are happy to admit that they have nothing to hide.

Fleets of cars bring with them a different sector of the workforce. As an exercise, think of a company car driver and a commercial vehicle driver. What do they look like? What are they wearing? What do they sound like? The chances are, you are thinking of a stereotypical middle class and working class person. One in a suit, the other in some form o work wear. Are fleet managers exercising a 'them and us' concept when it comes to car telematics?

Perhaps they are. Or perhaps they are thinking about the logistics are practicality of implementing telematic systems. Commercial vehicles are typically taken out on long term leases or even purchased outright due to the high mileage requirements. Any telematics system is likely to be in place on that one vehicle for a substantial period of time. With a fleet of cars, it is not unusual for the lease period to be much shorter, some drivers changing cars every six months.

Telematics systems will always incur a high installation cost thanks to the requirement for them to interact with the vehicle CANBUS. Experts are required to fit and remove such systems. If this is required on a six-monthly basis, I too would avoid such costs.

What ABAX are proud to offer is a system that only records what car drivers require from a telematics system. A record of each journey driven in order to submit mileage expense claims. The driver determines to what extent a fleet manager can 'track' their movement an even has the ability to remove all functions of tracking and just submit a mileage claim with the Triplog product.

For the fleet manager, ABAX designed the product so that movement of devices between vehicle can be done by anybody who can open the bonnet of a vehicle. Rather than gather data from the ECU of a vehicle, all movement is recorded via GPS. Th only interaction between the hardware and the vehicle is a connection directly to the vehicle battery.

To read more about how ABAX can help your business, check out our website

To read more about telematics and the legal implications, read the full article here