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What do GPS tracking devices in fleet vehicles do?

Data Blocks
Data Blocks

The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a satellite-based navigation system used to track vehicles and drivers in real time. Pieces of hardware, called GPS tracking devices, are installed in a vehicle to monitor driver behavior, equipment performance and vehicle routes through GPS satellite data.


Table of Contents

  1. How do GPS tracking devices collect and exchange data?
  2. What are the business benefits of GPS tracking devices?


GPS tracking devices work in tandem with GPS fleet tracking software to give fleets real-time updates and alerts, based on data sent directly from the vehicle to the software operator. The second layer of data indicates if vehicles are operating optimally, or if drivers are reaching their destinations in a timely, safe manner.  

How do GPS tracking devices collect and exchange data?

Data is tracked in three primary ways:

  1. The Global Positioning System
  2. Diagnostic plug-ins
  3. Driver input data

Information generated by a vehicle is bounced between satellites, computers and receivers that determine the exact latitude and longitude points on the ground. Data is transmitted via satellite system to the GPS hardware where vehicle data points, like location, engine time and geofencing status, are collected. 

Coupled with GPS fleet tracking software, a GPS tracking device does more than monitor vehicle location. Instead, it provides key metrics such as vehicle speed, engine performance, driver behavior, progress towards job completion and more. 

With access to this information, businesses can make integral decisions about their fleet including route optimization, maintenance needs, asset availability and utilization.

What is GPS fleet tracking »

What are the business benefits of GPS tracking devices?

Improve Productivity

GPS tracking devices significantly increase fleet productivity. Businesses have the insights and tools to optimize driver output, while virtually eliminating any idle time through a variety of actionable data. The ability to streamline driver and dispatch interactions also improve the communication loop between the road and office. 

In turn, GPS tracking devices help decrease the time drivers spend between jobs, maximizing their work day and increasing business profitability.  

Gain Insight into Vehicle and Driver Behavior

Fact: Business models that rely on time-saving operational and maintenance costs save money. But, often times, companies find themselves ignoring actionable vehicle data that can lead to better visibility and control of their fleets. That’s where GPS tracking devices come in. 

These solutions combine GPS data and vehicle diagnostics, providing an in-depth look into fleet performance through a user-friendly software platform. This vantage point leads to decisions that can reduce fuel consumption, enhance customer satisfaction, improve safety and extend company dollars. 

Mobile Management

Whether at the office or out in the field, staying connected to a fleet is crucial for businesses. Advancements in GPS tracking technology have provided companies with the ability to manage their fleet from virtually anywhere. 

GPS tracking devices allow users to obtain constant access to their fleet’s location through a mobile device. Mobile alerts of fleet activity such as excessive idling and unauthorized use can be sent via SMS or email. Both the hardware devices and the accompanying software empower fleets to stay competitive and make faster, smarter business decisions. 

Increase Safety

Fleet managers can examine their fleet’s safety behavior, such as harsh braking and speeding, through user-friendly and data-rich dashboards. Managers can easily pinpoint problem areas and take corrective actions to minimize safety risks and vehicle depreciation. With instant safety event replay features, managers can reduce unsafe driving patterns through driver coaching. 

Track and Maintain Compliance

To help your fleet stay up-to-date and minimize risk, GPS tracking devices funnel ELD, IFTA and DVIR data through a single platform. This reduces administrative work while guaranteeing compliance with the Department of Transportation and Federal Motor Carrier Safety 

Not only can compliance be easily tracked with GPS tracking devices, but it can also positively contribute to multiple layers of a company. Staying federally compliant reduces the risk of fines, encourages customer trust and improves vehicle maintenance—producing a strong return on investment.