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The importance of Big Data and reporting for your fleet operations

Big Data is likely a word you’ve heard before. However, it seems to be an abstract term for some to understand. Big Data refers to large volumes of varied data that is received at a fast rate. Usually there is reference to the three Vs – volume, velocity and variety.

Recently, two additional Vs linked to Big Data have emerged, namely value and veracity. Data in itself is not useful. It only becomes of use when its value is discovered through analysis. Veracity refers to data being both truthful and reliable.

A 2016 Forrester report states that, on average, between 60% and 73% of all data within an companies goes unused. In other words, it’s captured but never analyzed or put into action. Another report by Pricewaterhouse Coopers and Iron Mountain found that 43% of the 1,800 North American and European senior business leaders they surveyed obtained little tangible benefit from their information. 23% derived no benefit whatsoever. This means that three quarters of organizations lack the skills and technology to use data in an effective way to organize, measure and analyze their data for insight and planning.

Results from a FleetAnswers survey1 shows that data features in three of the top four challenges that fleet leaders face when using telematics. These three challenges include inconsistent data (42%), lack of data quality (37%) and data being too much, complex or tedious to analyze (37%).

Not using data properly is not necessarily the fault of organizations or fleets. As was said before, it may be a lack of understanding as to what is really needed in order to make it work and what to look out for. A testament to this is the fact that the top challenge from the FleetAnswers survey mentioned above is the underutilization of telematics solutions.

The answer to these Big Data challenges within fleets is undoubtedly to incorporate a telematics reporting tool such as MiX Insight Agility (alongside a central telematics solution) so that data can automatically be sifted through using sophisticated technology and then organized into categories, perfect for easy access and therefore quick analysis.

Telematics reporting can be used to measure a variety of fleet-related metrics including (but not limited to): 

  • Driver behaviors such as speeding, excessive idling, harsh braking and more to manage safety risk;
  • Driver scores to see improvement or decline in performance for the training purposes;
  • Fuel consumption and associated behaviors that may be contributing to an increase so that action can be taken to reduce it;
  • Vehicle movement (such as routes or arrival and departure times) and utilization of assets; and
  • Engine hours to develop accurate maintenance and repair schedules, and reduce potential vehicle downtime.

If you have not yet delved into a telematics reporting tool for your fleet, then you are potentially missing out on opportunities to improve your fleet operations and keep up with competitors. We reiterate that data is only useful when it is applied so don’t let it go to waste.

Sources 

1.     Telematics survey: Uses, challenges and opportunities. [PDF file]. FleetAnswers. Retrieved from http://fleetanswers.com/sites/default/files/Telematics%20Survey%20Report%20%28Part%20ONE%29%20%28Final%29_0.pdf

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