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When you’re first starting your business, keeping track of individual delivery drivers or technicians is fairly easy.

But as your business scales with every new customer and hire, it gets more and more difficult. At the same time, knowing your drivers’ real-time locations also becomes more important. You need data to adapt to last-minute orders, changes, and cancellations.

Just assuming that they’re on schedule isn’t going to cut it if you want to keep your business running efficiently.

You need a way to keep track of your drivers in real time. That’s where driver tracking solutions come in.

In this article, we’ll cover what driver tracking is, showcase its benefits in action, and show you an easy way to implement it for your own company.

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What Is Driver Tracking?

Driver tracking is the practice of using GPS tracking or other geolocation technology to track your drivers’ locations in real time. You can also monitor their driving patterns and speed.

Driver tracking helps you keep drivers on schedule, forecast ETAs, and adjust routes to include  last-minute orders and changes. 

It can also reduce driver issues like speeding or aggressive driving, which increase the wear and tear on your vehicles and the risk of accidents.

You can implement tracking by installing a hardware tracking system inside your vehicles.  A simpler alternative is to use a mobile app on your drivers’ mobile devices.

Let’s take a closer look at the software behind it, and how it works.

What Is Driver Tracking Software and How Does It Work?

Driver tracking software is a solution that helps you collect and translate data from hardware trackers or tracking apps.

It connects to the different devices through a mobile data network and collects information in real time. It then uses this data to generate a dashboard that gives your dispatchers and managers access to the information. 

A great driver tracking software offers access to information such as driver IDs, stops, and routes that are color-coded. You should also be able to tell if their deliveries or stops have been completed or not thus allowing your dispatchers to tell if a driver is on schedule.

Driver tracking software should also offer access to detailed analytics dashboards that show the successful delivery rate, vehicle utilization data, and more.

Why Do Companies Use Driver Tracking?

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics(2), there are over 3,5 million delivery and truck drivers in the US alone.

Some companies have tens of thousands of trucks and drivers in their fleets. That makes it impossible to keep track of them manually.

But even if you only have a few drivers, there are plenty of benefits to using driver tracking.

Adjust driver schedules in real-time to address changes and minimize delays

Without knowing where your drivers are at any given time, effective fleet management is impossible. Your dispatchers and managers need that information when trying to fit in last-minute orders and changes.

With real-time locations from a GPS tracker, your staff can easily distribute new orders to the drivers that make sense. For example, to drivers who are already headed back into the depot.

Forecast availability for last-minute orders

Knowing where your drivers are, and how many packages are left in their trucks, also lets your managers forecast available inventory.

Real-time GPS data is integral when trying to maximize the number of orders your fleet handles.

Improve driving habits to keep maintenance costs low and reduce the risk of accidents

Aggressive driving with rapid acceleration and fast braking adds excess wear and tear to your vehicles. That increases maintenance costs and the risk of accidents or vehicle breakdowns.

Detailed tracking data can help improve driver behavior, driver safety, and keep maintenance to a minimum. It will also expand the lifespan of your vehicles.

The goal is safe driving within the speed limit that considers wear and tear.

ELD

Long-haul carriers in the US and Canada are required to use ELD devices to track the driving hours of all drivers in their fleet.

These devices ensure that all drivers follow HOS regulations. The device also includes basic GPS tracking. But it can be less accurate than dedicated tracking devices or apps.

To provide customers with accurate ETAs or real-time order tracking

According to a 2019 study, 93% of consumers want to follow a package through every step of the delivery journey. 47% of them won’t order again if a brand lacks delivery visibility.

The easiest way to solve this problem is to use a GPS tracking device for your delivery drivers. OptimoRoute offers a mobile app for drivers, with automated real-time order tracking and text message notifications for your customers.

Tracking Drivers With OptimoRoute’s Mobile App

Let’s take a closer look at what OptimoRoute’s driver app (for Android or iOS) can do for your business.

The Mobile App

The app is straightforward to use for your drivers. After installing the app, they just need to open it to receive their order list and route.

The app uses the smartphone’s GPS and geofencing capabilities to track the driver’s location in real-time.

Once they’ve reached their destination, the app will ask them if they completed the order. If it was, the drivers confirm it. If not, they mark it as a failed delivery.

Dispatchers and managers can easily send planned routes by just clicking a button when they’re ready. Mid-route changes are added to the app in real time.

Main dashboard

Above, you see the main dashboard for your managers and dispatchers, available through the OptimoRoute desktop app.

Your managers and dispatchers can use this to get an at-a-glance overview. They can easily see where all the drivers are.

Live ETAs

Your dispatchers can view live ETAs for all deliveries and appointments to forecast any potential issues.

They can easily spot delayed drivers and shipments, so they can readjust schedules and contact customers.

It’s a great tool to boost punctuality.

Our secret weapon: Dynamic Replanning

What makes OptimoRoute special, however, is that it’s not just a great driver tracking app. We also handle both routing and planning.

You can even adjust their routes and schedules in real time to speed up deliveries or appointments.

Sounds good right?

The feature is especially useful for field service companies, since you can mix and match without having to transfer any packages.

Clarke Customer Care uses dynamic replanning for 75% of their orders to make sure that every appointment is met on time.

OptimoRoute automatically matches technicians with the right skill set and tools with each order to keep first-time fix rates extraordinarily high.

Keep your customers happy with Realtime Order Tracking

Customers want to know exactly when their package or technician is arriving. Clarke’s manager used to spend 2 hours a day calling ahead to over 100 customers.

Thankfully with OptimoRoute, you can automate this and keep customers happy without eating up your dispatchers’ time.

Optimize driver performance with detailed analytics

For a good customer experience, the right package must always reach the right customer on time. No matter how good your drivers are, you’ll have issues with delays or mixups.

Humans aren’t perfect, after all.

Use our detailed analytics to identify problems in real time. Then you can rearrange your fleet to solve problems like delayed orders or missed appointments.

Detailed arrival accuracy reports will help you tackle issues with shipping accuracy over the long term.

Compare planned with driven routes

With OptimoRoute breadcrumbs, you can compare the planned route (dotted line) with the driven route (solid line).

It can help you locate any problem areas or potential driver issues. 

Go Beyond Driver Tracking

While tracking your drivers is all well and good, having access to the data doesn’t matter if you can’t act on it.

OptimoRoute offers the ability to track your drivers, redistribute orders, and create new logical routes in real time with dynamic replanning.

Our route optimization software will also help you improve the routes and schedules you plan in the first place. It helps reduce mileage and driver costs by generating the ideal routes in mere seconds.

It automatically accounts for real-life variables like delivery times, vehicle capacities, driver schedules, and more.

Start your 30-day free trial today to see how our driver tracking and route optimization can transform your business.