Technology opens doors to better customer service.
Who hasn’t cleared a window of time for the cable guy to stop by, only to be disappointed when they don’t show up?
That’s one of the issues that telematics can address very specifically, according to Todd Ewing, Director, Product Management Group at Fleetmatics. “Telematics can help give customers an accurate representation of when service is going to happen,” he says.
In addition, telematics can ensure that the end user is there when the vehicle is dispatched. “It’s ultimately a benefit to the companies because it means the customer will be at home or at their place of business when they need to be,” says Ewing. “If the customer doesn’t get an ETA, they may not be home. If they get an email or a text to know exactly when to expect the driver, they’ll be there.”
And that can lead to customer confidence. “People like the idea that modern technology is helping to run the business,” says Ewing. “Some of our customers promote the fact that they’re tracking their vehicles as part of their marketing. In turn, their customers know that these organizations are completely aware of what’s happening.”
Many of Fleetmatic’s customers like the “find nearest” feature. “They can go into our map, type in an address for a job, and identify the vehicle in their fleet that’s closest to that job,” explains Ewing. “They can also search by people who have certain skills and get the right person dispatched quickly.”
Customers also appreciate being able to look at visual replays of where their fleet people have been, so they can understand how the driver got there, what routes they took, how efficient they were, and what places they stopped at between jobs.
In fact, telematics can change a business dramatically, according to Sunil Patel, Fleet Product Manager at TELUS. “Telematics can make a fleet more efficient and productive, by taking tasks and responsibilities out of a worker’s hand and over to technology, allowing them to do other things and better serve their customers,” he says. “If they were doing 10 jobs a day, with telematics, they may be able to do 11 or 12–that’s an immediate revenue opportunity.”
And with more jobs being completed in the course of a day, there’s less overtime. “Studies show that companies that use connected solutions have less overtime pay,” says Patel. “They can better understand and have better visibility of where their drivers are.”
Telematics can ensure that customer service needs are being met by streamlining the process of fleet management. That’s particularly true for FleetCarma, which provides telematics solutions for electric car fleets. “With electric vehicles, you’re dealing with state of charge and battery information,” notes Julie Hunter, Client Solutions Specialist for FleetCarma. “Without telematics to check the state of charge, you’d have to go to each vehicle, open the door and turn it on.”
“Telematics opens a lot of doors to improve the efficiency of your fleet, your employee management and customer service. As we become more efficient and productive, customer service levels can only increase over time.”