Automatic On-Board Recording Device (AOBRD)

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An automatic on-board recording device (AOBRD) is an in-vehicle device used to keep driver logs. The most common type of AOBRD is an electronic logging device (ELD). The FMCSA 1988 AOBRD rule first defined AOBRDs with far fewer requirements as an option for drivers who wanted to move away from paper logs. The 2012 ELD mandate replaced the 1988 rule but grandfathered in some existing AOBRDs. Electronic on-board recorders (EOBRs) also qualify as AOBRDs. 

What Do AOBRDs Do?

Old AOBRDs record miles driven, the date and time, vehicle speed, and engine use. More modern ELDs are a type of AOBRD that have become the standard. ELDs document record of duty status (RODS) data, track location and engine maintenance needs, and report data automatically to fleet managers. ELDs can also issue alerts if a malfunction occurs with the vehicle. As of December 2017, ELDs are mandatory. Any vehicle that was still using an AOBRD had to switch over by December 2019. 

How is an AOBRD/ELD Installed?

ELDs are currently the only compliant type of AOBRD. 

Some ELDs operate by connecting to the vehicle’s OBD port. Drivers can install them by plugging them into the OBD port of any commercial vehicle, typically found under the dash. From there, they automatically begin tracking data and sending it to fleet managers. 

Other models may connect through a truck’s diagnostic port. For these, you’ll need to ensure you have a suitable connector (typically 6 or 9 pin options) and then connect them to the appropriate port. These may be under the dash, near the handbrake, near the pedals, or inside the fusebox, depending on the vehicle.

Benefits of ELDs

Besides helping fleets remain compliant with federal standards, there are many benefits to having an ELD installed on fleet vehicles. ELDs track a lot of valuable data, including: 

  • Location: Tracking vehicles is an essential part of a fleet manager’s job. It makes it easier to dispatch and keep track of daily assignments and tasks. 
  • Fuel Efficiency: Fuel is a significant cost for fleet companies. Keeping fuel costs down is an immense help for any business. 
  • Speed (real-time and historical): Safety is essential for a business’s productivity and reputation. Ensuring drivers are not speeding is crucial to maintaining a company’s standing.
  • Accidents and Risky Events: Accidents are costly and time-consuming. ELDs can track risky events, and if they’re happening too much, a fleet manager can coach the driver or re-evaluate the route. 
  • Diagnostics for Each Vehicle: Vehicle health is crucial to ensuring the longevity of a fleet’s most important asset: its vehicles. Knowing when a vehicle is having engine trouble or needs maintenance is highly beneficial for fleet managers. 

Knowing this data about a vehicle can be immensely useful in making decisions about routes, safety, and staffing, so it is crucial information for fleet managers. ELDs help businesses significantly in tracking this data and making these decisions. 

Conclusion

AOBRDs, or more specifically, ELDs, are a necessity in the fleet business. Tracking data with a paper and pen is no longer an option, and it is so much easier with a plug-and-play device like an ELD. ELDs increase efficiency, cut costs, and improve safety on the roads. To find out more about ELDs and their benefits, check out our blog or our glossary. Azuga is the leading expert on fleet technology, and we have plenty of information for you to read through.

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Multi-Drop Route Planning

A multi-drop route planner is a process that plans a route for a driver to make more than two deliveries in multiple locations. It uses vehicle routing software to collect and analyze thousands of data points and determine the best delivery route. This route planning software can plan, re-route, and reschedule without causing any danger to the driver, environment, or business. It considers many factors, such as the number of distribution centers, warehouses, or residential areas a driver has to visit, resource availability, and driver safety. 

How Does Multi-Drop Route Planning Work? 

The route optimization software tracks the vehicle while factoring in when deliveries need to arrive. Of course, a human being should ensure that everything has been planned out properly, but the process should be automatic. Both this person and the system should look at distances, travel time, and fuel consumption. 

Once a route is set, the route optimization software compiles data to choose the best vehicle and driver depending on the delivery. It uses data based on the route and the client’s needs. At this point, it also considers the driver’s hours and weather conditions to determine how much time is needed. These systems need to work in real-time to ensure that managers and clients can connect with up-to-date information. 

Benefits of Multi-Drop Route Planning

There are various benefits to multi-drop route planning. It maximizes productivity, keeps fuel costs low, promotes driver safety, and helps businesses stay compliant with federal driver hour regulations. Your business will save money by using its drivers effectively and not using as much fuel. 

Where to Get Multi-Drop Route Planning Software

If you’re looking for this software, you don’t need to search any further! Azuga’s route optimization software allows for multiple stops. It provides the best routes based on historical data, traffic conditions, weather conditions, and machine learning that helps it create the best routes for you in real-time. See what you can do with route planning software by trying out a demo today!

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Fleet Dispatching

If you manage a fleet, you probably already understand the delicate dance that is fleet dispatching. If not, you may not realize just how crucial this process is to the success of any fleet-based business. 

What Is Fleet Dispatching?

Simply put, fleet dispatching is the process by which commercial fleet drivers are sent out into the field to make deliveries, service customers, and handle other business-related tasks. But it involves so much more than simply telling drivers, “you go there.” Good fleet dispatching may also involve considerations for traffic conditions, road hazards, driver skill sets, customer preferences, and onboard equipment. When done correctly, it’s a skillful juggling act that helps a business reach its daily goals. When poorly handled, it can be a disaster for all concerned.

What Is a Fleet Dispatcher?

A fleet dispatcher is a person in charge of scheduling and arranging dispatch for a commercial fleet. Small fleets may have a single dispatcher to manage all calls, while larger enterprise fleets may employ an entire team. 

A fleet dispatcher must clearly understand schedules and routes, job proficiencies, fuel management, fleet maintenance, and regulations related to hours of service and other fleet compliance issues. A good fleet dispatcher knows the drivers in the fleet well and can anticipate their scheduling needs and which jobs they are most suited to handle. Fleet dispatchers must be masters of communication and have elite organizational skills.

Fleet Dispatch Software from Azuga

Fleet dispatching is as much an art as a science, and it can be overwhelming at times. The best way to support the fleet dispatchers on your team is to give them tools and technology that make the job easier. Fortunately, Azuga offers the answers to all of your fleet dispatching conundrums

Our GPS Fleet Tracking software can keep track of all the vehicles in your fleet along with large equipment and other assets. Dispatchers can use this information to see which vehicles are nearby when a job pops up. What’s more, we offer top-notch route optimization tools to help guide drivers around road construction, accidents, and other hazards that might prevent them from getting to their destination on time. We can even help you schedule routine maintenance, promote road safety, and automatically deliver dispatch notifications to drivers in the field. 

Learn about all the ways Azuga Fleet can help your commercial fleet stay productive and efficient while simplifying maintenance schedules and creating a culture of safety on the road. Schedule an Azuga demo today!

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Last Mile Delivery

Last mile delivery is the step in delivery when something moves from a transportation hub to its final destination, such as a residence or a retail store. This step must be as quick and efficient as possible to ensure that customers are satisfied, and products move as much as possible. What is last mile delivery, and how can businesses perfect it? 

Steps of Last Mile Delivery

There are five steps to last mile delivery to go through to ensure it is accurate and efficient. 

  1. Enter orders into a centralized system
    You've been tracking the order all along. At this point, the customer is most likely also tracking it through a tracking number. It’s essential that you track the order to know precisely where it is if they have any questions along the way. 
  1. Orders arrive at the transportation hub. 
    Last mile delivery begins at this step. From here, the business must ensure that the order gets to the customer as quickly and efficiently as possible. 
  1. Designate delivery personnel. 
    Designate delivery personnel to deliver the parcel using a last-mile logistics solution. 
  1. Load orders onto delivery vehicles. 
    Scan each item before loading them onto the delivery vehicles. This is an important part of tracking as it updates the sender and the recipient as to the order's status. You don’t want anything to get lost along the way. 
  1. The order reaches the recipient. 
    Once the order reaches the customer, the last mile delivery process is complete. Be sure to update the tracking information to indicate the item has been delivered. 

Last Mile Delivery Challenges

Big-name companies like Amazon and Walmart are replacing last mile delivery with middle mile delivery. With middle mile delivery, the company owns the fulfillment, so the delivery process goes from the port to the fulfillment center. The problem with last mile delivery is that it is expensive: it can account for 53% of a shipment’s total costs. Supply chain inefficiencies are increasing as need grows, and so costs are only going up. It’s vital to optimize last mile delivery if you want to use it for your business. 

How to Optimize Last Mile Delivery

Technology is the answer to optimizing last mile delivery. Route planning software, for example, can minimize delivery costs and cut the time that it takes to deliver. Auto dispatching also helps to cut down on mistakes and time. Finally, gathering data and getting detailed reports can help identify problems in your operations and tell you how to improve upon your weaknesses. Fleet management software like Azuga offers all of these features and more to help optimize your last mile delivery options. 

Conclusion

Last mile delivery is still the standard way smaller businesses do their deliveries, and Azuga makes it possible to keep last mile delivery, even while competing with big retailers. Find out more about Azuga by reading our blog or visiting our website.

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