by Iñigo S. Roces
The past month saw headlines peppered with news of incidents involving trucks and buses. And while the authorities and pundits continue to point fingers as to who is at fault, one truck manufacturer is taking concrete steps to prevent this problem altogether.
Scania is connecting fleet operators directly to their vehicles and drivers with the launch of their new Fleet Management System (FMS). BJ Mercantile, distributor of Scania trucks in the Philippines, launched their new FMS to improve fleet safety, increase the productivity, and reduce cost of operations of local Scania truck clients.
Scania FMS is a set of services that connects the vehicles to the office, providing a readout of key details like vehicle data, fuel consumption, fleet position and driver performance (coasting, heavy braking, speeding or idling). The system returns comprehensive, clear and useful information, hoped to help operators better understand how their fleet is performing and quickly address issues with the driver or vehicle. Clients can choose from two packages: the Monitoring Package or the Control Package.
The Monitoring Package gives fleet operators weekly email summaries covering all of their vehicles, such as fuel consumption, carbon dioxide emissions and driving behavior. The information is easily exported to Microsoft Excel in order to easily integrate with any pre-existing monitoring charts. The package also grants access to the Scania Fleet Management portal for more convenient service planning. Service Planning and Remote Diagnostics provides an overview of all the equipment in the fleet, along with their maintenance plans, including a calendar for keeping track of maintenance and repairs. When a vehicle is scheduled for repair through the FMS portal, parts for replacement can already be prepared in advance, thereby reducing downtime. The workshop only uses Scania genuine parts to lessen breakdown risks.
The Control Package includes everything offered in the Monitoring Package, with the addition of vehicle and driver follow-ups and operational information. They’ll be able to access information and functions including driver evaluation, vehicle evaluation, fuel report, events report, vehicle tracking, fleet position, and environmental report all live, as the vehicle is moving. There’s also a messaging service for quick and easy communication.
All new Scania trucks that are being sold in the country come preinstalled with the Scania Communicator telematics unit crucial to the Fleet Management System. Fleet operators merely need to activate the service.
Once the Control Package is activated, fleet operators can see where their vehicles are on the road, as well as readouts like current speed, emissions, and fuel load and consumption, all in real time. The system also includes handy tools like GPS-based geo-fencing, which can restrict where their trucks go; and electronic speed limiting, which can set a maximum speed for the vehicle remotely. Finally, the system also features a driver scoring system which grades drivers in six aspects and suggests ways to improve their driving, raise their scores, and thereby reducing operating and maintenance costs.
Besides monitoring the trucks and their condition, Scania also offers a driver training program to show drivers how to drive more economically and more safely.
Scania Fleet Management System is already being used by a number of fleet operators in the country. BJ Mercantile gladly demonstrated the FMS at the event, with the help of Great Sierra Development Corporation and Best Geo-Carrier, two pilot operators of the system and Scania fleet clients.
“The Scania system gives you more in-depth knowledge of your vehicles and driver performance,” said Benzon Rosete, Managing Director, Best Geo-Carrier.
“Scania Driver support is being used together with our Driver Management Team to coach drivers in the way they handle our Scania vehicles,” said Luigi Teola, Technical Manager, Great Sierra Development Corporation.
The fleet operators also shared how the system has helped them come up with an incentivized rewards system to improve their drivers’ performance in a positive way.
The Scania Fleet Management System is available to fleet operators that have purchased new Scania trucks, starting at PhP1,800 per vehicle, per month.
Scania’s intuitive system serves as proof positive that there are already easy and efficient means to easily govern, manage and maintain a fleet of trucks or buses. With this new system out in the market, it’s only hoped that many more will follow soon.