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GPS Fleet Management Customer Testimonials

A large commercial landscaping company credits the use of a GPS system, furnished by GPS Fleet Management, Inc., with the recent theft prevention of two pieces of expensive heavy construction machinery:  a $30,000 skip loader and a $40,000 backhoe.  On the most recent incident, “I got an e-mail alert at 3 in the morning telling me that one of our backhoes was heading on an un authorized trip to a location far removed from the jobsite where it was parked overnight.” My Blackberry conveyed the new exact location where the backhoe was. I called a company employee who lived in that vicinity and by morning the backhoe was back on the job. Recovery time, from theft to recovery: under an hour!

The skip loader theft and recovery story was similar, only this one happened in the early evening, around 6 pm. “The GPS system tracked the skip loader as it left a little bread crumb trail from where it was stolen to where it was taken,” the customer reports. “I was able to call the police in Queen Creek and tell them that the piece of machinery was traveling east on Ocotillo Road.  When the guy was pulled over. He told the police he was a contractor who just assumed this was the rental machinery he had ordered—even though it had OUR company name on it.”

The theft prevention feature alone has more than paid for the GPS “solution”, which our company now has installed on 15 trucks and 28 pieces of heavy construction equipment. “We saved on what would have been an increase in premium had the thefts occurred, and the insurance company gave us a discount as well. When you have a lot of machines, as we do, that really adds up.”

The GPS program also keeps track of the hours of usage on each of its fleet. “We have different services set up: oil changes, 500 hour services and 1000 hour services. It keeps track of it all and sends us an alert when something needs maintenance. You get a sense of security, knowing you don’t have to worry about missing a scheduled service. The system sends us an alert.”

Unauthorized after-hours use and that expensive gas waster, unnecessary idle time, has been cut—to zero on unauthorized use and “substantially” on idle time—thanks to the GPS system.  It also helps assure accurate job billing by telling us when the crew arrived at the jobsite and when it left, “ he says.. We can check the hours without actually being there."

Originally the company only used the GPS Fleet Management system on its trucks to confirm a crew’s time on a job, payroll verification, identifying unauthorized usage and maintenance tracking. “Once we saw what it accomplished, we decided to use it on our heavy equipment. We had LoJack, but, frankly, LoJack was a joke. We had two machines stolen when we had LoJack.  With your system, our theft percentage dropped to zero!"

In 2005, a patient transportation company met with GPS Fleet Management to discuss a web-based solution to manage vehicle fleets. In January of 2006, they installed a GPS fleet tracking unit in every vehicle. When combined with cellular technology, we can watch what our vehicles are doing from any computer using the internet. Here are some of the benefits that we are experiencing:
  • We get reports automatically e-mailed (daily, weekly, monthly) that shows what time a vehicle started up and every stop made during the day.
  • We can get data downloaded into a CSV or Excel file and easily analyze routes takes, miles driven and personal use of vehicles.
  • E-mails are automatically (in real time) send to supervisory personnel if a vehicle is speeding, excessively idling, starts up after hours or leaves the Phoenix metropolitan area.

Since we implemented the GPS fleet management system, we have realized significant benefits already, including:

  • The number of "Safety First" complaints (from the 800 number on the back of each vehicle) has decreased about 40%
  • Speeding has dropped dramatically
  • Vehicle sharing has been far easier since we know where the closest vehicle is at any time.
  • Tracking mileage is allowing us to bring vehicles into the mechanic when mileage dictates (just-in-time) rather than a using a scheduling guestimate.

The bottom line is that vehicles are being used more effectively, personal usage is minimal, drivers are more conscientious, consumers and employees are safer, support staff are more productive and expenses are lowered. We expect a meaningful drop in our insurance premiums due to this change. We expect to recover the costs of the system in the first year.

One of the largest builder of homes in Arizona which has been in business for almost 40 years. Having a fleet of over 30 service vehicles has always presented several management challenges for our warranty service department. Tracking proper usage of the vehicles was difficult at best due to the fact that most of the fleet is spread over 3 states at any one time. Some of the “gray” areas we wanted to clarify were:

  • Are the service techs where they are supposed to be when they are supposed to be there?
  • Are the vehicles being used for personal errands or for side jobs on weekends?
  • Do the time sheets turned in by the techs match their actual start and stop times?
  • How fast are the vehicles being driven?
  • How do we know if regular maintenance is being performed on the vehicles?
  • How much actual time is being spent at the customer’s house?
  • How many miles per day, week or month are they averaging?

By incorporating the GPS system into our fleet, we feel that we have gained valuable and measurable knowledge regarding the questions we had. A couple of valuable stats we have been able to compile in just the 2 months the systems have been installed in one-third of our fleet are:

  • The GPS units were installed at the beginning of March 2006.
  • In California alone, the number of completed work orders went from 198 during January and February, to 241 for March and April. (A 21% increase!)
  • The number of hours per week averaged 1757 for January and 1765 for February. After GPS, The number of hours per week averaged 1641 for March and 1656 for April. (More than a 100 hours decrease!)
  • The average number of miles driven per week has dropped by approximately 1000 from March to April. (Saves approximately 10 gallons per vehicle per week!)

The peace of mind of just knowing where our vehicles are and have been greatly enhances our confidence that we have control over these “gray” areas. We look forward to the day when the entire fleet has been outfitted. I have no doubt the savings in just these few stats alone will far outweigh the cost of the system.

Imagine operating a labor-intensive service business where you had no idea how much time your employees spent at any given account. Imagine being unable to accurately determine operational costs until 30, 60 and even, 90 days after they occurred. The old adage, “It’s like driving a car by looking in the rear view mirror” comes to mind. Yet, this is how our business operated for over 10 years before installing our global positioning system by GPS Fleet Management in October, 2005.

With our GPS, we have begun to track and document important data that is already helping us to make changes. For example, we are now able to determine the profitability of EACH account, which in turn has allowed us to make objective pricing adjustment decisions. We have also been able to capitalize on more efficient route structures, which is paying dividends in light of the current high fuel costs. In addition, employee oversight has improved with vehicle speed and location monitoring capabilities.

In summary, I believe that our GPS has given us a competitive advantage. I am anxious to get more data to evaluate seasonal and year-to-year differences.

A company that builds and maintains cellular tower sites in 15 western states. Our clients include virtually all the major cellular providers. We send crews to sites to construct and repair towers. These crews work very much on their own, often in remote locations. Our company motto is “Do it once. Do it right the first time.” Hence our standards are high (our customers demand that and we have to provide it). So we wanted a GPS system that would meet our standards.

Why We Needed a GPS System: Our management team became concerned about the significant overtime being submitted by our crews. Often our clients need to get their towers operational and begin or reestablish their revenue stream from cellular traffic. Our crews do put in long hours, including driving to the various sites. Like many businesses our payroll is one of our most significant costs and prudent management dictates that we control costs where possible.

Being on their own in remote locations resulted in our crews manually submitting their time. In most cases we believed that the time was reasonable but in some cases the hours submitted appeared inflated. In looking for a solution we contacted Myron Hammes, President of GPS Fleet Management.

The Results: Mr. Hammes explained the benefits of the GPS Fleet Management System and we were quite surprised at the level of detail that we would be able to obtain. The system was ordered and was installed on our vehicles in California and Arizona over a single weekend. We were impressed by the orderliness of the process and the timeliness demonstrated by Mr. Hammes and his installation people.

Once we were in receipt of both the reports from the GPS Fleet Management system and our payroll we were able to easily spot inconsistencies. We were able to pare back quite a few “extra” hours that had been submitted. The detail of the reports is really outstanding. We can see when each vehicle started in the morning, when it reached a site, when it left a site and when it returned to the motel or to the home of the driver. Every stop is detailed as to the location and duration of the stop. This is especially helpful in documenting hours worked on time and material jobs. The reports clearly indicate how long we were on a given site. No questions can be raised.

Extrapolating from that first payroll and the costs that we were able to reduce, we believe the system is one of the best investments in equipment that we have ever made.

An ancillary and unexpected benefit was that our drivers can call in if they are having trouble finding a site. Our Project Management people can see on their computer monitor exactly where the vehicle is and direct the crew to the site. When a tower goes down and we get the call we can determine which crew is the closest and direct them to the site for the needed repair. Our customers are impressed by our timely responses.

In addition to the cost savings and the accuracy of our payroll we get reports when our vehicles exceed the speed limit or whatever speed level we care to use as the point at which we are notified. Knowing that they will get a phone call if they speed our employees drive in a more responsible manner. There is great peace of mind in knowing we are operating in as safe a manner as possible.

Recommendation: We are very pleased with the system and the people at GPS Fleet Management with whom we have dealt. The installation went very smoothly and the reports are clear, accurate and useful. Conflict over what hours were worked has simply ended, safety enhanced and cost savings obtained. What more could we ask for? We unhesitatingly recommend this for any company with vehicles in the field.

When we first put Global Positioning Systems into his company vehicles we noticed some startling things. Trucks pulling trailers traveled 90 mph in some cases and employees sometimes misstated their hours worked. We sat down with our employees and explained his findings and future expectations. Thanks to the GPS systems, we have been able to increase efficiency and employee honesty. We installed the systems into 15 vehicles and plans to ultimately put them into 85. The systems are capable of logging when the vehicle starts, how long it drives, how long it idles, rate of speed and much more. “Just having the GPS in all the vehicles is a big plus, and we are going to be getting a discount on insurance and saving a lot of time.” The systems can also be used to help police hunt down a stolen vehicle. The benefit of the tracking device has been “immeasurable.” “There was probably at least two hours in one day that my technician was wasting.  It was the way calls were being dispatched, directions, etc.”

We wanted to keep a closer eye on our trucks and our employees, and he also wanted to track the time his workers spent at jobs. So we turned to Global Positioning Systems, commonly referred to as GPS, to find out how his company could run more efficiently. We installed the systems into six vehicles and used them as a tracking device. The systems log when the vehicle starts, how long it drives, how long it idles, rate of speed and many other details. “I wanted to see where my vehicles were going.  I wanted to watch the personal use of my vehicles and see if they were taking them on weekends for side jobs.” To get an accurate assessment of the situation, we installed the systems and didn’t tell his employees for a couple weeks. What he saw confirmed his suspicions. “I saw quite a bit of difference on timecards than what the system showed, stopping at Circle Ks four times a day and some personal use of my vehicles, so I sat down with the employees and talked with them and I saw a lot less of that.” The system also helped us lower our gas bill, watch his vehicles and estimate costs of jobs since he can watch how long the jobs take. The GPS systems “definitely” paid for themselves.

Our GPS Fleet Management system has helped us:

  • Reduced fuel consumption and unnecessary mileage on vehicles by eliminating unauthorized use, unnecessary side trips and stops.
  • Confirm actual time their technicians spent at each job which has proven to be a benefit to the company and the customer. Better customer service!
  • Dramatically reduced unnecessary idle time. (Each 1-hour of unnecessary idle time represents an average of 2 gallons of gas consumption and 2 hour of engine use.) Therefore, this has resulted in lower operating expenses by less fuel consumption and less unnecessary wear and tear on the trucks engines.

As a part of my surveying/engineering business I run up to 10 survey crews in trucks every day. These crews are out in the field on projects, out of our sight, all over the valley. Since adding GPS Fleet Tracking to our company a couple of years ago we have been able to monitor the movements and scheduled of our crews on a continuous basis. We have been able to eliminate inefficient crew assignments and to improve service to our clients. This has resulted in better utilization of crews and increased our client satisfaction and improved our bottom line.

This letter is to thank GPS Fleet Management for all the support and commitment they’ve offered to our company in the past year. Since the installation of the GPS devices into our company vehicles, we have been able to compare differences on our gas consumption, repairs, and employee performance. After the comparison, we feel that the installation has been a good decision for our company's cost saving measures.

At first, some employees weren’t pleased, but they soon realized its effectiveness when they found that they were able to check their time against their GPS report. With a supervisor’s authorization, our employees are permitted to view their reports to help them better manage their time.

We definitely would recommend GPS Fleet Management to any company that has company vehicles. Not only are their systems effective, but their service and commitment are phenomenal. Thank you again, Myron.

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