Turning Points

A global leader in data collection, Geotab, processes billions of data points, making it the biggest telematics company in the world. It has big plans for Australia.
Geotab Go GO9.

As the supply chain recovers from three years of market turbulence its value in everyday life has never been more apparent.

The management by freight carriers of key and varied metrics across the network, is no less important, including the now commonplace business practice of data analysis.

From its capture, integration and optimisation, data is fast transforming the world we live in and with it the supply chain. Within the next ten years that transformation, will have entered another phase.

Drivers are likely to have some form of biometrics monitoring their health. Internal safety reporting by private companies will go directly to relevant government agencies.

Meanwhile, the surface has barely been scratched when it comes to the potential of geofencing for matters of safety and security.

Geotab, a global powerhouse in telematics with over 40,000 customers in 150 countries, is working towards this next phase.

When compared with other markets, its presence in Australia has been relatively nondescript. That’s about to change.

In February, the company announced it had signed a deal with Logmaster, an Australian provider of Electronic Work Diary (EWD) and fatigue compliance management systems.

The partnership marks a major milestone in Geotab’s investment cycle in the Australian market, where EWDs are fast becoming part of major industry reforms for commercial vehicle drivers.

As a voluntary alternative to the written work diary, an EWD monitors and records the work and rest times of a driver.

In addition to reducing red tape for drivers and operators, EWDs offer another avenue to deliver insightful real-time data in which fleets can better manage their own compliance.

Under a completely new production strategy spearheaded by Sean Killen, Geotab Vice President Latin America, Asia & ANZ, the company has embarked on a collaborative marketing model bolstered by what it describes as deep product integration.

“Australia is such a great market and we’re really going to shake it up,” he says. “Given the changes taking place and the scheduled shutdown of 3G by Telstra, the market is enthusiastic about Geotab expanding in Australia.”

Sean Killen Geotab
Sean Killen Geotab Vice President Latin America, Asia & ANZ.

The experience and expertise of Geotab in the heavy vehicle sector combined with Logmaster’s commitment to safety compliance has created high expectations for a Long-Term Evolution (LTE) enabled telematics solution in Australia.

The bigger carriers, in response to this, soon will need to commit to a telemetry platform that, almost certainly, is going to shape how they operate over the next ten years.

“There is an urgency in the market at minute,” says Sean. “If you are a major carrier with thousands of vehicles in your fleet a big decision needs to be made relatively soon on who to partner with for the next phase. They don’t want to do this twice.”

To that end, Sean estimates that there are over 300,000 vehicles out there that will have to flip hardware over to LTE.

Installing telematics in a vehicle is not something a fleet wants to have to do repeatedly, should they get that decision wrong.

Billion-dollar companies have ambitious strategic visions on where they want to go that Geotab, as an active partner with many Fortune 500 companies in other regions, can align with.

“That’s the type of customers that we really focus on because they’re sophisticated enough to get the value from the data and what it can do for their business,” says Sean. “Australia will lead on this side of the world in how fleets are using the data to transform their businesses.”

A privately owned company itself, Geotab turns over about $500 million a year in revenue.

At present, it has 750,000 trucks connected to it around the world and processes an estimated 100,000 data points a second.

The Logmaster EWD brings with it the entire Geotab ecosystem to the local market, making it one of the most feature rich transport management platforms in Australia.

Along with meeting the EWD Standard of the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator, the Logmaster product enables the user to log all shift data including start, stop, rest break and finish times, while providing real-time alerts for managing breaks.

Log activity can also be shared with multiple companies.

Managing fatigue is consonant with the management of inefficient driver behaviour, which not only delivers operator compliance but also improves performance and productivity.

EWD, according to Sean, will be an integral part of Australian trucking operations within the next five years.

“We now offer a complete telematics and Electronic Work Diary solution for Australian fleet and transportation companies of all sizes,” he says. “For Geotab it represents a commitment to delivering a world-class experience for every fleet type in Australia.”

Just as the needs of leading carriers are being impacted as a result of mounting pressures like inflation, labour challenges and strained supply chain, telematics enables operators to make smart and nimble business decisions — an imperative if they are to properly negotiate this fluid environment.

“There’s genuine thirst from companies in Australia for where telematics is going,” says Sean. “We’re here to quench that thirst.”

Major carriers like Toll will be faced with a big decision shortly.
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