Guide to Telematics

  • Find out why companies introduce the technology
  • The benefits to the technology explained
  • What does the future hold for telematics

You may or may not have heard of telematics but it is a term that will become more and more familiar as the technology becomes more widely adopted.

If your company is in the process of introducing telematics, this guide will help you to understand what telematics is, why companies look to introduce it and the benefits it can bring to you as a driver.

What is telematics?

Telematics is essentially a box that sits within your car that tracks various data that can be used to improve efficiency, reduce costs and track a car's whereabouts.

It is a way of monitoring the location, movements, status and behaviour of a vehicle or fleet of vehicles and is more commonly used in vans and lorries as it enables companies to plan routes more effectively and in some cases give customers a more accurate delivery time.

The business case

The challenging economic climate means businesses are looking to use every tool in their armoury to save money.

Not only is Telematics aimed at helping improve driver safety, fuel economy and  total mileage but it also offers the potential to lower insurance premiums too.

The range of data that is downloadable is huge and enables companies to carry out real-time cost control. This, for example, could include as much detail as start and stop times, distance travelled, average and maximum speeds, acceleration, gear selection, engine idling, braking data and fuel economy.

Suppliers estimate that companies could recoup their telematics investment within a year and could potentially save up to eight times the cost of the box.

So why isn’t every company investing in the software?

Mainly because the initial cost is far from cheap and you need to have enough available resource to analyse all the data that is produced.  

The driver benefits

One of the biggest issues drivers have with telematics software is the perception that 'big brother' is watching - that the company doesn't trust them.

Ultimately the biggest benefit for you as a company car driver is that it can improve safety.

Under the watchful eye of the company, drivers tend to be more mindful about the way in which they drive; looking to improve economy, reduce idlling and keep within speed limits. This in turn will reduce the likelihood of an accident and make for a generally less stessful journey.

What does the future hold?

With the Corporate Manslaughter Act being ever more important, more and more companies are looking towards telematics software and it is not a stretch to believe that every company car will be fitted with the software as standard within the next ten years.