When your fleet consists of heavy equipment such as bulldozers, cranes, backhoes, graders, or dump trucks, you have a lot of investment at stake in each one of those machines.

Being able to continuously monitor and track that heavy equipment and its usage is essential to effectively controlling your operating and maintenance costs and improving your return on investment.

To do that, you need a telematics solution that can provide the data needed to know where your equipment is, how it is functioning and being operated, and its maintenance needs and status. The more you know, the more effectively you can manage the fleet and get the most out of every piece of heavy equipment in your operations.

These telematics solutions are far more sophisticated now as industries of all kinds move to the Internet of Things (IoT) with its vast monitoring and analytics capabilities. They allow you to keep on top of every aspect of your equipment. Here are six examples of how telematics can help you better manage your heavy equipment:

  1. Equipment security: Despite the size of heavy equipment, theft and security is actually a significant problem. Installing GPS telematics tracking devices on every piece of equipment ensures that you know at all times where the equipment is, whether it is in motion or parked, and whether it is where it is supposed to be. These tracking devices are able to monitor the equipment even when it is in very remote areas, such as rural construction sites, oil or gas fields, and even mines,
  2. Usage alerts: When heavy equipment is operated at or beyond its specific limits, not only does it cause undue wear and tear that increases maintenance costs, but it can also create safety issues for the operators and those working nearby. A telematics solution can alert you immediately if the equipment isn’t being operated properly – whether it is moving too fast, being used erratically, or overheating the engine – so you can act quickly to correct the situation. Not only does this help prevent equipment failures, but it also gives you the information you need to teach and work with your employees on the best way to operate the equipment.
  3. Preventive maintenance: By using intelligent telematics, you can maximize the productive hours for each piece of equipment and extend its usable life. Sensors can deliver alerts about engine problems or other diagnostic issues and immediately alert management if a vehicle goes out of service. Equipment maintenance scheduling can be based on accurate engine usage hours and any automatic service alerts, eliminating unnecessary maintenance. With real-time notification of faults or mechanical problems that require urgent attention, these issues can be corrected before they lead to unexpected downtime and lost revenue.
  4. Lower operating costs: It is important to find savings wherever you can to increase profitability and ROI. Continuous tracking of heavy equipment with telematics lets you know instantly of any changes in the equipment, such as a sudden fuel drainage that could indicate fuel theft. You also get alerts about conditions such as excessive idling, rough driving, or other negative factors that can affect operating costs.
  5. Reduced capital expenditures: In any heavy equipment fleet, there tend to be some pieces of machinery that are used more than others. But that can lead to overuse of certain equipment, which means greater wear and the likelihood that it will require more frequent maintenance or need to be replaced sooner than necessary. With a telematics solution, you gain the insights you need to track utilization and make sure your equipment is being used efficiently, with wear and tear spread evenly across all the equipment in your fleet.
  6. Regulatory compliance: When you move your heavy equipment to new worksites, in different states or locales, or even in other countries, you encounter different rules and regulations regarding your equipment and its impact on the worksite and the surrounding area. With a telematics solution, you have complete visibility into everywhere that equipment has been, how long it has operated each day, at what times, and more. When regulations require you to supply that information, or if you need to respond to local stipulations, you have objective, verifiable proof of your operations. That can be useful in preventing fines or other legal action that can hurt the profitability of a project.

The data that a telematics solution offers can make the difference between a well-run and profitable heavy equipment fleet and one that is poorly managed and plagued by inefficiency and mechanical breakdowns. Detailed insight into equipment usage and status is essential to optimizing that equipment through preventive maintenance, improving usage, enhancing security, and boosting ROI.