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The Top 10 Ways Fleet Intelligence Improves Your School Bus Operation

One of the simplest, most cost-effective ways to better protect your people and your school buses—all while improving your bottom line—is the power of Fleet Intelligence technology. While GPS tracking is the most well-known feature of a Fleet Intelligence system, Synovia’s proprietary software delivers far more than real-time location data.

Fleet managers can efficiently monitor and manage maintenance responsibilities, payroll, fuel card usage, vehicle and equipment location history and more, delivering significant improvements in safety, savings and service. When you add in the streamlining of driver payroll and pre-trip inspection, Synovia delivers a powerful tool to solve many of your fleet’s most significant business challenges.

Synovia Solutions can optimize your operations from the garage to the field. Here are some of the most common ways fleets leverage this technology to improve the way they do business.

1. Fleet Intelligence extends the life of vehicles and equipment.
Customers rotate vehicles to evenly distribute mileage.

Your fleet represents one of the most capital-intensive aspects of your department. After investing in a new school bus or white fleet vehicle, it’s imperative your department keeps it in operation for as long as possible.

Synovia’s Fleet Intelligence software helps prolong the life of your vehicles by monitoring usage hours, driving habits and more—delivering more effective management of equipment lifecycles.

Customers use our software to switch out high mileage vehicles with other assets that have acquired fewer miles to ensure a more even usage distribution over time.

This will help you determine the right time to buy, along with how long you need to retain a piece of equipment before selling, so you can get the most out of your fleet at the job site and higher resale at the auction.

2. Fleet Intelligence enhances worker safety.
Customers report less speeding once their employees know they’re being tracked.

Regardless of the fleet you manage, worker safety is always paramount. A Fleet Intelligence solution from Synovia will ensure your school bus drivers operate your equipment in a way that promotes a safe environment for your entire crew.

You’ll know if your workers are operating your vehicles and equipment recklessly or at an excessive speed. Take action to prevent harm to people and property. Our system is even equipped with an emergency button that sends instant location information, so if a driver is in trouble, they’ll be found right away.

3. Fleet Intelligence reduces fuel and maintenance spending.
Customers regularly say their Synovia investment paid for itself simply in fuel savings.

Fuel and maintenance costs play a significant role in managing your school bus operation. Ignore how your equipment is being operated and maintained, and you’ll likely pay a higher cost of ownership over time.

Synovia’s Fleet Intelligence tools enable reduced fuel costs by monitoring vehicle fuel economy and engine idling. If one of your drivers is wasting fuel by braking or accelerating harshly, traveling at high speeds or sitting idle for hours on end, you’ll have the info to address it.

Fleet Intelligence technology can cut maintenance costs through engine diagnostics with fault code alerts. If one of your vehicles displays a fault code alert—such as a check engine light—you’ll receive a notification, enabling you to proactively manage minor repairs before they become major.

Not only will you save money, but you’ll also be ensuring that the school buses and equipment your district or company counts on remain on the job site, instead of at a repair facility.

4. Fleet Intelligence tracks your assets.
A Florida customer tracked a stolen trailer with $100,000 worth of equipment to an out of state crime ring.

Another costly problem that has affected virtually every fleet is lost or stolen equipment. Missing property is expensive to replace and it can lead to costly delays by leaving your crew without the tools they need.

With asset tracking from Synovia, you can instantly locate any company property, from skid steers to electric generators. Our devices even come with a built-in battery, enabling you to locate virtually any piece of equipment, not just gas-powered machines. So when that major flood arrives suddenly, you’ll know where all of your assets are immediately.

5. Fleet Intelligence will revolutionize your payroll system.
A North Carolina customer saved so much in overtime costs the system more than paid for itself.

To simplify the payroll process, Synovia offers our Time and Attendance feature. Simply known as TAA, Time and Attendance connects to your payroll system, eliminating the need for paper time tracking methods while allowing you to manage the number of hours your employees work with ease.

Once implemented, your staff can clock in inside of their vehicles, leading to a decrease in unnecessary labor expenses—including overtime costs. Some of our customers report saving six figures annually by simply decreasing a few minutes from each employee’s daily timecard.

6. Fleet Intelligence can ensure you’re complying with labor laws and local regulations.
Knowing how long your team is in the field by vehicle location can keep you compliant.

To help protect your employees from causing harm to themselves and others, labor unions—as well as state and federal legislators—require that your workers not be on the job for more than a set number of hours. Failing to abide by these regulations can lead to serious physical harm and even cause your school district or organization to face legal implications.

To assist in complying with these important standards, our fleet intelligence software enables you to track start and stop times based on the number of hours a piece of equipment has been in use. No longer worry whether workers have exceeded a specific threshold. You’ll know.

Synovia’s fleet intelligence software prevents employees from working past local working hours, which if ignored, can lead to fines and poor publicity.

7. Fleet Intelligence protects your fleet against insurance liabilities.
A Florida customer had the factual data to protect against a false insurance claim.

While insurance is a legal requirement that helps to protect your employees and buses, it also defends your district or company in the face of wrongful accusations.

Fleet Intelligence also bolsters your insurance protection. If a worker takes a company vehicle off-site for non-work related reasons, you might not be fully protected if an accident occurs—particularly if a passenger who’s not an employee is injured.

With Synovia, you can ensure that company vehicles are tied to company use. Some of our customers report an immediate five percent reduction in insurance costs by simply adopting a GPS-powered Fleet Intelligence system. Add that to the fuel savings and the potential for additional savings with Time and Attendance, and it’s easy to see how the savings can cover the cost of our software.

8. Fleet Intelligence can help you improve customer communication.
A smarter dispatching experience based on proximity and knowledge.

Tracking your vehicles with Synovia’s Fleet Intelligence software enables you to locate any driver or other member of your team at any moment.

Our Fleet Intelligence tracking tools allow you to view every one of your vehicles, giving you the ability to dispatch specific vehicles to the right locations. This ensures your resources are being put to work where they are needed most. And when a parent calls wondering why their child’s school bus hasn’t arrived at their stop yet, you’ll be able to pull up the exact location of that bus.

9. Fleet Intelligence is essential in disaster preparedness and response.
Our customers prepare for hurricanes with Fleet Intelligence.

One of our customers is a populous Florida county that must be ready for hurricane season every summer. They’re using our Fleet Intelligence software to preposition vehicles ahead of storms to be certain they have coverage countywide if and when roads and bridges become impassable.

Another one of our customers is using the same solution to better manage their snow trucks and ensure the city is optimizing their limited fleet of snowplows to cover more roads and reduce plowing duplication.

From the Sunbelt to the Snowbelt, Fleet Intelligence provides leaders the real-time info they need to perform more effectively.

10. Fleet Intelligence protects your employees.
Your most valued resource is well served by a fact-based approach to citizen complaints.

How do you respond today when a parent or member of the community calls to complain about a speeding school bus driver? For many transportation directors, it becomes a “he said-she said” scenario in which employees or drivers have to defend themselves against allegations.

Many of our customers find that our technology provides them objective data to verify or contest citizen complaints. In the majority of cases, transportation directors and fleet managers are able to defend their employees—who, more often than not, are driving appropriately. With the right data, it’s easier to protect your most valued assets: good employees!

Synovia Solutions is an Indianapolis-based business that provides Fleet Intelligence solutions to help manage commercial vehicle fleets more efficiently. We focus on improving driver safety, enhancing clients’ ability to serve their customers, and helping save money—all by providing detailed data on your fleet, from location tracking to engine diagnostics. Learn more at SynoviaSolutions.com or call 1.877.SYNOVIA (1.877.796.6842). 

Download this list of the “The Top 10 Ways Fleet Intelligence Can Improve Your School Bus Operation.”

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