30. May 2021 | By Tim Ruhoff
Time is money. this is particularly important when it comes to route planning for fleet vehicles. inefficient routing means cash for the company. detours, traffic jams and slow-moving traffic mean that vehicles are on the road longer than planned. to avoid this, good route planning is very important for a company. the technical tools available for this and the advantages they have will be discussed below.
Factors to be taken into account
The aim of route planning is to optimise vehicle utilisation. the aim is to avoid empty runs and optimally calculate connections. it does not matter whether the route is coordinated for a truck or a car. route planning makes it possible to accurately calculate the route for all types of vehicles. to do this, the start, destination and route are planned in advance. planning is carried out using an online map, a navigation system or route planning software. when planning, in addition to the journey time, intermediate stops for refuelling must also be taken into account. it must be ensured that there are also sufficient petrol stations on the route. furthermore, roadworks must be avoided. however, current traffic disruptions such as accidents can also be taken into account and routes rescheduled in good time in order to avoid delays. shops and customers to be supplied may have opening hours which must be observed accordingly. furthermore, rest times must be observed.
In the case of trucks, the road conditions must be taken into account. For example, in the case of bridges, care must be taken to ensure that the clearance height is suitable. In the case of protruding or overlong trucks, the turning circle and curves must be taken into account when planning the route so that the transport can be carried out safely and the vehicle does not get stuck.
Advantages of route planning
Delivering to the customer on time is the goal of every company. since route planning calculates the exact time, the delivery can be announced in advance. with well thought-out route planning, the available transport space can be used perfectly to avoid detours and empty runs. for example, after an order has been completed, the return trip can also be used to process further orders on the route. if this is organised in good time, even any overnight costs incurred are cheaper than an empty run. in this way, with good planning, an originally expensive empty run becomes a lucratively paid return trip. this not only saves companies time and transport costs. it is even possible to reduce the size of the fleet and thus also save on personnel costs. in the case of personnel, it should be noted that the driving and rest times of the truck drivers must be taken into account. with foresighted planning, it can be much more economical.
Route planning software
For a small fleet with one or two vehicles, route planning can be carried out manually or with the help of navigation systems. the more vehicles and orders are to be planned, the more difficult it becomes to keep track of the vehicles and routes and to be able to react in the event of changes. this is neither effective nor up to date. there are now digital systems that support planning. the workload is significantly reduced by means of fleet management software. the route documentation can be stored and managed electronically via the software, which helps with the planning of order processing. furthermore, further data on the vehicles can be clearly administered via fleet management software. this includes, for example, a digital vehicle file. all vehicle information such as first registration, the current mileage as well as repairs and maintenance intervals can be stored in the file. the repair and maintenance data can also be stored in a digital file. the vehicle data can be stored in the file.
Using all the factors that need to be taken into account in route planning correctly is only possible with a digital solution. Above a certain fleet size, it is no longer effective to carry out route planning without digital support.
Route planner App
Eine pünktliche Lieferung ist das A und O für einen zufriedenen Kunden. Verspätete Lieferungen können im schlimmsten Fall sogar Regressforderungen nach sich ziehen. Daher ist eine detailgenaue Planung der Route bares Geld wert. Die Funktionsweise einer Routenplanungs-App ist simpel. Im Fahrzeug ist ein GPS Sender eingebaut, der die Position des Fahrzeugs über Radiowellen permanent an einen Satelliten sendet. Der Satellit überträgt die Daten an die App. So ist nicht nur der aktuelle Ort des Fahrzeugs darstellbar, sondern ebenso seine Geschwindigkeit oder die Fahrtrichtung. Auf einen Blick ist erkennbar, wie lange die Fahrt noch bis zum Ziel dauert und welche Route die Kürzeste oder welcher Weg der schnellste ist. Eine Routenplanung für Lkw und Pkw erkennt zudem, welche Strecken aufgrund von Sperrungen nicht befahrbar sind und bietet Alternativrouten an. Dadurch kann wertvolle Fahrzeit für Umwege gespart werden. Ebenso bietet das System Alternativrouten an, wenn die geplante Strecke durch Staus aufgru
Route planner app and fleet software - the optimal partners
With the help of a route planner app, travelled routes can be automatically recorded and evaluated. however, not only is the history documented, but the current location of each vehicle can be determined through vehicle location. this offers the fleet manager the opportunity to react flexibly to changes. for example, customer orders can be passed on to the driver who is in the immediate vicinity of the customer and there is no need to send an additional employee into the field. in addition, the app is helpful for the billing of travelled routes and travel time. the destinations driven to can be transferred directly to the fleet software for billing purposes. at the same time, this also offers a control function, as the travelled routes can be compared with the actual planning. in this way, it is possible to prevent drivers from deviating from the planned route during their deployment in order to run private errands. this is also a good way to avoid the risk of drivers being sent to a destination that is not on the planned route. the app is also a useful tool for the fleet manager.
Geo & Tracking from fleetster
The Geo & Tracking software from fleetster combines many of the advantages described above and is versatile. The current vehicle location is transmitted live by the GPS tracking system and can be tracked. The route driven is documented and can thus be controlled. Furthermore, the Geo & Tracking from fleetster has the option of setting up geozones, e.g. a district. As soon as the vehicle leaves this geozone, an alarm is triggered and the fleet manager is informed. In this way, thefts or employees going on private errands with the vehicle are quickly detected. With the Fleet Tracking software from fleetster, fleet managers always have their vehicle fleet in view.
Wherever arrival and journey times have to be determined exactly, fleetster's software is a great support, not only for logistics companies, but also in the area of car sharing or in the management of pool vehicles. Thanks to live tracking, it is possible to track at any time where the vehicle is and whether it arrives on time at the customer or is returned on time at the rental station for the next customer.
The fleet is an essential factor in a business and efficient route planning saves money. It pays for a fleet manager to invest in clever route planning systems. Reliability and on-time delivery is important for customer satisfaction, so good route planning is a real competitive advantage to arrive at the customer's site quickly and safely. In addition, the route can be designed to avoid spending expensive working time in traffic jams.