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How Much Does a GPS Fleet Tracking System Cost?

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GPS Fleet Tracking System Prices

A GPS fleet tracking system is one of those investments that quickly pays for itself. By monitoring your drivers' exact mileage you'll reduce labor costs, improve employee productivity, and cut down on fuel costs.

GPS fleet tracking systems consist of an electronic device that is installed in a vehicle and computer software that records data about each trip. Information recorded includes the location of each vehicle, the mileage, and the exact time the vehicle reaches its intended destination.

GPS fleet tracking systems prevent worker fraud and improper personal use of company vehicles. They can also be used as a tool to make better decisions about which employees to dispatch and when.

What is a Fleet Management System?

Fleet management systems provide a way for companies to minimize the risks associated with operating and relying on vehicles and improve the efficiency and productivity of their labor force. Simply put, this is software that puts all aspects of your fleet at your fingertips, including:

  • Vehicle details - registration, insurance, etc.
  • Driver information
  • Maintenance schedule, including historic and future repairs and servicing
  • Procurement costs
  • Fuel transaction
  • Reporting functions regarding fleet performance

Fleet management systems offer a wide range of functions, including driver management, safety management, and vehicle telematics. These functions can be handled in house or, if you prefer, outsourced to a dedicated team.

A fleet management system might not seem like it is a necessity for your business, but the truth is that any company that owns or leases vehicles should have some type of fleet management system in place. These systems keep your employees and your assets safe, all while increasing productivity and minimizing the risks that come with the utilization of vehicles by ensuring that everyone and everything is functioning at the best possible level.

What are the Benefits of a Fleet Management System?

Integrating a fleet management system for your business offers a wide array of benefits. Whether you look at it from a managerial or a monetary standpoint, these systems truly improve any business they’re attached to.

As a company, one of the first things that you will notice after implementing a fleet management system is how much time and money you save. These systems optimize work schedules, making sure that all employees are working, not just to the best of their ability, but quickly and efficiently as well. In addition, fleet management systems let you get a better look at when vehicles will need to be serviced and what repairs or replacements will be needed soon.

These benefits go hand in hand with the monetary savings; with a more comprehensive look at what needs to be done for each vehicle and how it is performing, you cut the risk of issues popping up or making minor damages worse. Plus, since these systems cut down on risk, your insurance premiums are also reduced.

Implementing these systems also leads to better customer and employee satisfaction. Several fleet management systems allow for tracking systems that let you provide customers with real-time information about their driver or products. It also gives your drivers and employees an efficient way to process any necessary information and reduces the amount of manual work they must perform. And, when your employees have multiple tools to get their job done, they perform better, which leads to happier clientele.

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Safety First with Fleet Management Systems

You should never view a fleet management system as a way to spy on your employees; it is a way to protect their safety, as well as the safety of your business and its assets. Management systems often offer the ability to locate any company vehicle at any given time, which provides a broad range of safety applications. If a driver were to get into an accident, for example, then being able to pinpoint their exact location could get emergency services to them faster and possibly even save a life. The same goes for a breakdown; you have the ability to get to your driver as quickly as possible, keeping them from being stranded with the vehicle or having to deal with unsafe or extreme weather conditions. Plus (from a purely business point of view), since you know where the vehicle is and can diagnose the issue, you spend less time waiting and more time getting things fixed. Fleet management systems are an amazing way to not just monitor your vehicles and employees, but to keep them safe as well.

Types of GPS Fleet Tracking Systems

There are two basic types of GPS vehicle tracking systems:

  • Active or real-time vehicle tracking systems use cell phone or GPS signals to keep up-to-the-minute records of a vehicle's location and mileage. The information is automatically sent to your computer system every few seconds or minutes.
  • Passive vehicle tracking systems store data about the vehicle's location and mileage on a device in the vehicle. That data is transferred to your computer system only after the truck returns to a fixed location.

Real-time tracking requires a monthly service fee, while passive systems have just a one-time cost.

Real-time tracking is preferable if you need to know the location of your vehicles at all times. However, if you're simply looking to cut down on worker fraud and abuse of company vehicles, a passive tracking system will suffice.

GPS Fleet Tracking Systems Average Costs

Active and passive GPS vehicle tracking systems are priced similarly, aside from the monthly fee that comes with active systems. Budget anywhere from $200 to $700 per vehicle for the equipment and installation. On the low end of that price range you'll still get a reliable system. But, it might lack features like wireless radio frequency transmission or a built-in navigation system for the driver.

If you opt for real-time tracking, plan on spending about an extra $25 to $50 per month for each vehicle in your fleet. However, for many fleet operators, the convenience of being able to track employees in real time is well worth the added expense.

In some cases, companies that sell real-time tracking systems will give you the equipment for free if you agree to sign a long-term contract for the monthly monitoring service. Be sure to ask any dealer you're considering if this is something they offer.

Other GPS Fleet Tracking System Costs

Some dealers charge a one-time fee to activate your fleet tracking system, usually ranging from $30 to $100. Many charge early termination fees if you cancel the real-time tracking service before the end of your contract. Those fees often range from $100 to $200.

While some dealers offer unlimited tracking as part of their monthly fees, others charge based upon the number of locates or “pings” you use every month. It might cost $25 per month to check on the status of your driver 1,000 times, $50 per month to locate the driver 25,000 times and $80 per month for unlimited locates. If this is the case, be sure to purchase a plan large enough to suit your needs. Any locating you do in excess of your plan will come with expensive overage fees.

Why Do Dealerships Utilize GPS?

While a huge selling point of GPS trackers is the ability to efficiently and quickly locate any vehicle that a customer wants to see, GPS systems offer much more than that; GPS trackers are an efficient management and security tool, as well.

As with any type of business, auto dealerships have to keep control of their assets and monitor their inventory. GPS trackers provide an additional level of peace of mind when it comes to both of these, as you can quickly see what you have and where it is simply by checking on your GPS system. And, not only are you able to track your vehicles on the lot, but you would be able to find them for repossession purposes if a customer is unable to make payments.

From a security perspective, a GPS tracker can make it easier to keep your vehicles and your lot safe. Many car thieves look at auto dealerships as an easy target, assuming that they can get away with taking a single car from the lot. With multiple vehicles, it can take hours, sometimes even days, to notice a single missing vehicle. Once you finally notice it’s gone, it could have been sold or abandoned. A tracker can prevent this. GPS allows you to notice in real time if a vehicle is missing and provide its exact location to police. And, if the trackers are openly displayed, it can prevent theft by letting it be known that the vehicles have GPS systems installed.

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