Increasing Efficiency and Reducing Costs: How Electronic Logging Devices Can Boost Your Bottom Line
A capable ELD solution can help your trucking company boost efficiency by simplifying IFTA reporting. It can also improve vehicle maintenance by reducing idling time.
By automatically recording a driver’s hours of service, electronic logging devices (ELDs) comply with FMCSA regulations and reduce fatigue for drivers. They also improve safety by reducing risky driving behaviors.
The ELD, or electronic logging devices, is the hardware that automatically records driving time for truck drivers by federal Hours of Service regulations. These devices transmit this data constantly to fleet managers in the back office via a cellular connection or Bluetooth and to drivers’ trucks during inspections by law enforcement.
In addition to helping fleets stick to HOS rules, an ELD also reduces operating costs for trucking companies by eliminating the need for drivers to fill out paper logbooks manually. This frees up their driving time and ensures fleets and dispatchers are always in the loop about a driver’s status.
Moreover, the data an ELD collects goes beyond HOS. Fleets in food and beverage, local government, passenger transit, construction, and other industries all find an ELD’s real-time location data to be a competitive advantage, allowing them to earn more per load.
Unlike paper logs, ELDs accurately record vehicle and driver activities and eliminate the need for fleet managers to track HOS manually. This alone saves time, effort, and money that would otherwise be spent preparing and maintaining manual documents.
By automating these processes, ELDs also ensure more consistent compliance. This reduces the risk of costly Form & Manner violations, out-of-service violations, and even engine fault reporting.
Additionally, better planning routes results in more efficient vehicle utilization, reducing operational costs and higher profits. Fleets that utilize a feature-rich ELD can track and monitor driver performance data, which helps them structure a performance-based rewards program that incentivizes drivers and improves customer satisfaction and employee retention rates. It also allows them to identify impaired driving behaviors that could lead to crashes and CSA scores.
ELDs can track the vehicle’s location and transmit that data to the back office constantly or, in the case of DOT inspections, for a one-off transmission. They also collect driving behaviors like harsh braking and rough cornering to identify high-risk drivers to encourage them to improve their driving style.
Whether your fleet is trucking, food, and beverage, passenger transit, local government, or construction, the benefits of implementing ELDs can boost your bottom line and give you a competitive advantage in the marketplace.
The most obvious reason to install an FMCSA-approved ELD is compliance with Hours of Service regulations, but there are many more benefits to using these devices. By improving route management, reducing operational costs, and increasing productivity, you can maximize profits for your business.
Increased Customer Satisfaction
ELDs make it easier for fleet managers to monitor driver status in real-time. This is critical for compliance with HOS and other regulations and supporting vehicle inspections, route planning, and more.
The best ELD devices also provide more than just compliance data. They can help you save money through improved route optimization, fuel savings by tracking engine idling, and digital maintenance planning tools. Additionally, they can improve CSA scores by eliminating human error and help you stay safe on the road.
When evaluating ELDs, look for ones that are FMCSA-approved and easy to install and use. Avoid systems with a high initial hardware cost, additional in-cab devices required for driver use, or add-on fees for features like GPS tracking.
A primary function of ELDs is to make complying with Hours of Service (HOS) rules easier, but they also have other cost-cutting benefits. For example, less-than-truckload carriers can use real-time GPS data to share vehicle locations with broker apps, increasing their earning potential by enabling quicker pickups and delivery times.
ELDs can also help reduce fleet expenses by automating routine tasks like driver and vehicle inspections, fuel tracking, and compliance reporting. They can help prevent costly violations by providing accurate HOS records during roadside inspections.
If you want to cut costs, consider using an ELD that is FMCSA-approved and offers all-inclusive features at one monthly price. Some are easy-to-use and intuitive software that requires minimal training for drivers and fleet managers, saving you time and money. Request a free trial today to see how Samsara can benefit your fleet.