7 Oct 22

"Successful implementation of telematics improved driver safety up to %72."

Why is telematics inevitable? Because connected technology is the best solution for establishing safe and efficient fleet operations, it is also the future: By 2030, 95% of all vehicles will be connected. How a fleet can successfully implement telematics and what crucial details they need to consider were all explained at the 6th edition of the Connected Fleets Conference. 

The growing inflation in Europe is pushing energy prices even higher. At the same time, supply chain issues continue to give headaches to fleet managers, who are spending more time learning about telematics than ever. At the Connected Fleets Conference, hosted by Fleet Europe Editor-in-Chief Steven Schoefs and Fleet Europe Deputy Editor Alison Pittaway, fleet managers gathered all the gems of knowledge experts had for them. 

What is beyond 2022 in connectivity? 

The elements that will drive telematics in the coming ten years will be control, compliance and consent, says Dr Andrew Jackson, Research Director, Ptolemus Consulting Group. Control is crucial for ensuring good driver behaviour, which leads to the safety of people and goods being carried. A recent survey of Arval Mobility shows a fleet can save up to €10,000 per vehicle per fleet by detecting KPIs through telematics and taking action. 

"Telematics is not an advancement triggered solely by electrification but inevitable," says Jackson, assuming that video telematics will continue to grow and mobile apps and portable devices will have more role in monitoring services. "Fleet telematics may appear optional today but will be mandatory in the next 5-10 years." he warned. 

Reduce accidents, push EVs forward

The market inflation in Europe is expected to increase TCO between 5% to 10%, notes Karim Adjaout, Head of Business Development, Arval Connect, who states that a comprehensive view is necessary: "To be sure your fleet benefits effectively, the connected services you must consider a global approach to the topic." 

Here's why: connected services not only include price negotiations on data fees or hardware installations and other steps. Companies must see the hidden costs and the submerged part of the iceberg and add them to the calculation to ensure connectivity will succeed. By doing this, fleets can save up to €70 per month and reduce fuel to 16%. Telematics also reduces accidents by up to 25% and unleashes the electrification potential. Through Arval Connect, a fleet having only 1% EVs has the potential to become 80% greener. 

Three steps towards electrification

"In the near future,  almost every new car will be factory connected," says Christoph Ludewig, Vice President, OEM Europe, Geotab. Geotab, analysing 55 billion data points from over 44,000 customers daily, predicts that 95% of all vehicles will be connected by 2030. 

"The direct connection of vehicle data and OEMs becomes especially important in the fleet market," says Ludewig. Thus, fleets can harvest original data directly gathered from the connectivity solutions built into the vehicles by OEMs. But this won't make everything easy. That's why Ludewig underlines three steps for electrification: 

  • Decide whether you're going to become electric or not.
  • Through monitoring, learning and experience, upgrade your fleet in time.
  • Scale the electric to increase the EV vehicles in your fleet. 

These steps work perfectly for Swiss Federal Railways, which has over 40 different vehicle models and is working with Geotab to become climate neutral by 2040. "Going electric, operating electric, and scaling electric will be the main topic in fleet discussions in the coming years," says Ludewig. 

Overcoming the problems in Europe

Fleets are struggling with increasing insurance claims costs while accidents continue to rise, more than 90% caused by human error, says Damien Penney, VP of EMEA of Lytx. The solution? 

While there's still some hesitation over adopting video telematics, replacing old-school methods with First Notification of Risk (FNOR), supplemented with artificial intelligence (AI), is vital. With machine vision being the eyes and AI being the brain, video telematics is a proactive approach to avoid accidents before they happen, as the eyes capture all the surrounding environment and the brain detects the risk. 

However, it doesn't happen overnight, as all experts highlight, to adopt advanced telematics. Algorithms must be trained with data gathered from billions of km of driving, says Penney. On the other hand, an empowerment programme for drivers is crucial: "A people-first proactive approach to safety can mitigate risk factors, protect your business, and save lives." Penney urges. 

Choosing the telematics supplier 

It is mandatory to ask essential safety questions if you have a fleet of over 14,000 vehicles travelling more than 400 million km per year, says Saban Tekedereli, Category Manager Fleet Europe, Securitas Europe. What are those questions? 

  • Are we driving safely? 
  • How can we optimise spending in different categories? 
  • Do we have any fleet reserves? 

For safety and reducing costs, start with the 'low-hanging fruits', says Tekedereli. But before monitoring key telematics indicators, choose the supplier according to your needs. These criteria today increasingly involve privacy. 

The telematics journey is 80% preparation and 20% execution, says Tekedereli. He provides some essential tips: 

  • Analyse existing best practices in your company.
  • Benchmark connectivity status to the market average.
  • Discuss telematics with all stakeholders.
  • Set clear rules in using telematics data. 

Executing pilot projects and good communication with drivers are other essential elements of a good telematics approach. The result? Securitas Belgium has increased driver safety by 72%, decreased fuel consumption by 10% and accident rates by 49% between 2012-2021. 

These tips were only a small part of the expertise shared at the Connected Fleets Conference. For a foreseeable future and success, join us at the next conference

The 6th edition of Connected Fleets Conference is sponsored by Geotab, Lytx, Arval (Founding Partners), ALD Automotive, Michelin Connected Fleet, Phecta, Samsara, Streamax and Tranzaura (Diamond sponsors), and Jack by AGC and Moove Connected Mobility (Gold sponsors). 

Authored by: Mufit Yilmaz Gokmen