How to Make Your Drivers More Efficient

Providing drivers with a tablet and integrated software is a great way to increase productivity
How to Make Your Drivers More Efficient
Mobile devices equipped with routing and billing software can help make your business more efficient.

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Managing a fleet of drivers can be difficult, to say the least. There are always inefficiencies for reasons such as routing issues, lack of information, lack of communication and customer error. Every minute that your drivers are not performing efficiently, money is going out the door. 

So what can be done to help assist your drivers in providing the best service in the most cost-effective way?

There are several actions that can be taken to weed out time-wasting habits and improve driver productivity. With increased access to technology and software, options are available that can help solve some of these problems. Tablet computers and other mobile devices equipped with proper software provide solutions to many of the problems that your business may be experiencing.

Highlighted here are some of the common productivity issues that you may have with your fleet. Providing your drivers with mobile devices can help them accomplish more work in less time.

Printing routes on paper is expensive and wasteful

Many companies are still tied to printing out drivers’ routes on paper every morning. This process can be effective, but it produces its own set of issues. Paper printing can be expensive and wasteful. Think about how much you spend on paper, ink and printer upkeep by printing all of your route sheets off every morning for every driver. Over just one year the costs and waste can add up to a staggering amount. By supplying all of your drivers with tablet computers that integrate with your routing software, you can easily upload the driver’s route to their device every day. This way they are provided with a pre-calculated route optimized for their daily stops.

Update routes throughout the day

With a traditional paper route system you are unable to update your drivers’ route information throughout the day. If a customer requests additional service or a driver has to make additional pickups or drop-offs, you would have to call the driver and ask them to complete the additional work. With tablet capabilities, your dispatcher would only have to update the information in the computer and push the updates to the driver’s tablet or device. This will save time and eliminate human error.

Geolocation for every restroom placed

Since the mobile devices have geolocation capabilities built into them, you can easily track the location of your drivers and where restrooms have been placed. Drivers can note the exact geolocation at each of their stops, which can help save time when trying to locate lost restrooms. This process can help drivers find the precise location of the restroom in the future. We have all experienced driving out to an address that turns out to be an entire college campus. With easy location tracking, you will know exactly where the restroom was placed.

Documenting issues that prevented service

In some instances a driver may have stopped by a job site, but he or she was unable to provide the needed service because the restrooms were too difficult to access. If a customer calls to report that their restrooms weren’t serviced, it is usually the driver’s word against the customer’s. However, with tablet technology your driver can take a picture of the obstruction and annotate the reason that the service was not completed. In this case, if a customer calls to report that their restroom was not serviced you can email them the picture the driver took and explain to them why your driver was unable to service the restrooms. Once the customer understands what they must do to make the restroom more accessible, there may be fewer instances of having to drive out twice for the same service. This process could also help reduce credits that have to be issued to the customer’s account due to service complaints, and can keep everyone honest.

There are several companies that can provide you with the software to help reduce inefficiencies in your routing programs. They can even integrate with other aspects of your business, such as your CRM and accounting software. Be sure to shop around for the software that will fit best your needs. You wouldn’t want to make such a big decision without analyzing all of your options and needs first. Be sure to make a list of the functionalities that you most require for your business and work from there.

Here are some software suggestions to help you manage your fleet more efficiently:

  • The driver’s app from Clear Computing Inc. running on Apple and Android devices gives drivers a real-time route list for service stops and work orders with all the information needed to complete and update the status of each job. Included are voice directions from the current location for each stop, maps and update forms for key operational fields, including quantity, units serviced and start/end times.
  • Famhost Apps is designed to eliminate paperwork delays. Invoices automatically calculate prices, parts and taxes; inventory is updated automatically; and an electronic copy of the invoice can be emailed automatically to the customer, as well as information sent to the office.
  • The Reveal GPS vehicle tracking system from Fleetmatics is designed to improve productivity for virtually any mobile workforce by providing insight into driver behavior and workforce productivity.
  • GPS Insight fleet- and asset-tracking software is designed to allow managers to have complete visibility into mobile operations to reduce costs and improve driver efficiency.
  • SmartForms from GPS North America transforms traditional paperwork orders and inspections and sales forms into customizable digital forms, available on an iOS or Android platform.
  • Locqus provides a cloud-based field service management platform that provides the ability to schedule jobs, send en-route customer notifications, collect payments on site, track inventory, create quotes/invoices/receipts, view transactions and view employee and job locations with geolocation services.
  • The NexTraq Fleet Tracking System provides a cloud-based, comprehensive fleet-tracking solution with Fleet Dispatch that allows an operator to schedule jobs, dispatch them to vehicles, and send messages to and from workers in the field, including a drag-and-drop schedule board that accelerates and simplifies assigning jobs.
  • Mobile WorkForce integrates with Point-of-Rental Systems’ Enterprise Software for Windows and can be utilized with any Web-enabled mobile device and be integrated with other software to provide a variety of fleet tracking services.
  • RIDGIDConnect streamlines the reporting process, integrates digital media and files into a hosted archive environment, and produces sharable professional reports. 
  • Summit Automatic Decision Mapping and Dispatch from Ritam Technologies uses Summit Rental System customer accounting and operations management for billing and to prepare routes. 
  • The Android App from RouteOptix allows a driver to make notes regarding locations, change service details, record delivery/pickup details and enter tickets from disposal facilities.
  • The SAFE Software menu-driven program allows operators to track customer information, schedule service and recurring visits, create invoices and proposals, record payments and more.
  • Mobile Technician software from SWRemote allows technicians to manage a job in the field using a mobile device while linking and updating directly to Successware21 Office Management System in real time. 
  • The Service Program software was created for QuickBooks users, providing access to live weekly training sessions, video tutorials, phone and online support.
  • Tank Track software is designed to help septic service businesses manage customer information and schedule appointments quickly and easily.

Click here to request more information on any of these software options.

About the Author
Erin Van Schepen is marketing coordinator for On Site Companies, a portable solutions company based out of St. Paul, Minnesota. For 25 years, the company has provided quality equipment coupled with excellent customer service. Read more about On Site’s story at www.promonthly.com/editorial/2014/07/best_foor_forward, or visit www.onsiteco.com.



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