GPS can be a highly beneficial tool for any business that needs to track assets being transported from one place to another. An asset tracking system can also be used in other business situations, such as tracking and monitoring employee performance. But there are many other factors of GPS tracking that can help to boost efficiency and productivity in the workplace.
How Does GPS Tracking Work?
Global Positioning System technology is an extremely common feature and tool in today’s world. For example, it can be found in our smartphones, satellite navigation systems, and the microchips of our household pets.
As multiple satellites orbit the earth, beaming down data, a GPS triangulates its position by measuring how far away it is from other satellites. A receiver must then lock onto at least four of these satellites to determine its accurate location on earth.
Once a receiver has this information, the tracking device can work out the precise location of a particular asset. As well as knowing the direction and speed in which the asset is travelling. As a result, a business can then determine where its assets are located, whether they’re on the move and when they’re likely to arrive at its destination.
When to Use Trackers
The main benefit of businesses using GPS is to prevent the risk of loss and theft of their high-value assets. For example, a tracker could be fitted to a fleet of vehicles that a company has leased. If one of these vehicles is stolen, emergency services can use the data transmitted from the GPS device to locate and recover the vehicle.
A device can also be used to keep track of non-vehicular assets in the workplace, which can eliminate the process of manually tracking down an asset in the workplace and help improve time management. A construction company that splits its equipment and tools across multiple sites could benefit in this way.
GPS can be used to track and monitor employees, as they are valuable business assets too. For example, a vehicle fleet manager could use tracking to monitor their drivers. They could identify a driver’s speed and whether they are driving carefully or not. With this data, they then might choose to set speed restrictions and incentivise safer driving.
Another example is a flyer distribution company. They can track leaflet carriers going door-to-door, on foot, within a specific geographical area. That company’s clients may want to see proof that the flyer campaign has been delivered.
Typical Features of a GPS
GPS asset tracking software enables businesses to monitor their most valuable assets. These assets can be located either on-site or anywhere else in the world.
With asset tracking software you can also keep track of all business assets in one centralised directory. By having a complete overview of all assets you can identify their location, where they need to go, and who has used them last, all in a matter of seconds.
A tracking system can use GPS to help you better understand how your business is currently utilising its assets. With this data, you can determine which assets are providing a low ROI due to being under-used. You might decide to sell those assets or relocate them to other premises where they can be put to better use.
Most modern tracking software solutions are also cloud-based so that you can access data anywhere and at any time. Typical features of an asset tracking system can include:
- Real-time tracking
- Comprehensive reporting functionality
- A maintenance scheduling module
- Asset usage history
- Alerts for asset theft
- Alerts for driver behaviour in fleet tracking
Most systems also offer barcode tracking and RFID tracking technology, as well as integration with accounting software or ERP systems. They can help manage an asset’s lifecycle too, from acquisition to disposal.
However, the right option for your business will depend entirely on the type of assets you need to track and the budget you have available.
Choosing a System for Your Business
Firstly, you should determine what assets you want to monitor, as company assets can take many different forms. For example, a company in the healthcare industry may want to track important patient documents and medical waste.
Other forms of assets could include a vehicle fleet, IT assets, mobile devices, machinery, equipment, employees or sensitive data.
Then, once you’ve defined the assets that you need to track and manage, you can better research the features you require from an asset tracking solution.