Mike Fitzgerald, executive vice president and general manager of Innova Telematics Solutions, spoke with Aftermarket Business World about trends in the fleet management space.
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What features/functions are customers looking for now in a fleet management solution – and how has that changed over the past few years?
Features and functions that meet government requirements is certainly something that customers look for; however, the ability to increase productivity by diagnosing and repairing vehicles more quickly is paramount to reducing downtime and saving money.
What are some of the key barriers companies face when trying to deploy a fleet solution? What are the common stumbling blocks?
As with any new technology, cost, acceptance and management of data can be barriers. However, overcoming these stumbling blocks is not difficult with a system that provides a quick return on investment; is quick and simple to install and implement; and provides data in a clear format that is easy to understand.
What misperceptions do companies have about how these systems work, or what they can do with them?
The major misperception when it comes to fleet management systems is a result of underestimating the value of all the data and features. For example, some fleets implement a system to track vehicle positioning or driver behavior. That is only part of the story. By reviewing the complete set of data provided allows fleet managers to have better insight into the overall management of their vehicles, including required and anticipated service information that helps reduce unexpected, costly downtime and repairs.
What are some of the key technical innovations that are going to be important for customers moving forward, both within your own product set and in general?
In addition to enhanced data management, technical innovations that will be particularly important to fleet customers center around vehicle diagnostic features. Vehicle technology is constantly evolving and each year vehicles come equipped with even more sensors and computers. The majority of fleet management systems are not keeping up with changing vehicle technology.
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