Why construction businesses track third-party logistics vehicles
by Jenny Malcolm
October 16, 2015

For construction businesses, on-site workflow is critical to the bottom line, so it is not uncommon to use third party logistics partners to handle raw material deliveries to allow the workforce to focus on core responsibilities. There is a unique use case for construction businesses to benefit from GPS tracking to improve management of time and resources on the jobsite, even without a fleet of their own.

  • Unique challenges:  Although utilizing a partnership with a materials logistics fleet will increase efficiency in many ways for construction businesses, not having the ability to track these vehicles’ locations has the potential to increase expenses. If a project manager doesn’t know when materials will arrive at a jobsite, it will affect workflow and cause employee downtime. If employees are scheduled to be on the job but materials are not delivered, it can also increase unnecessary overtime to ensure jobs are completed on schedule.  Another unique challenge for construction businesses using third party logistics to transport raw materials is providing proof in the event that fewer materials are delivered to a jobsite than purchased. Without a way to quickly identify and provide proof of the quantities delivered on a given date, construction fleets will be forced to pay for materials they didn’t receive.
  • Monitoring third-party trucks:  By working with a third party logistics partner that uses a GPS tracking system to track their vehicles, both businesses will have the ability to monitor vehicle locations, confirm deliveries and even confirm the quantity of raw materials delivered to jobsites.
  • Proactively monitor ETAs:  Construction businesses can use GPS tracking to proactively monitor ETAs on deliveries to better plan daily workflow. Logistics fleets that use a GPS tracking system have the ability to share custom maps with their customers that include specific vehicle locations. By viewing a custom map with the vehicles making deliveries to their jobsites, construction businesses will have a better idea of when materials will arrive. If a delivery is running late, project managers can reassign job tasks to eliminate downtime or adjust employees’ schedules to prevent paying out unnecessary overtime.
  • Track material quantities delivered:  By integrating a GPS tracking system with Garmin navigation devices, third-party logistics partners can assign custom forms to their drivers’ navigation devices to expedite data from the field straight to their customers. By assigning a custom form to be completed after raw materials are delivered, the third-party logistics’ drivers will complete the form at the point of service, include the specific material type and quantity delivered, and send it straight to the construction business as confirmation.  Field data is gathered via API, reports, and CSV file so the construction business can take action right away. If a project manager identifies that fewer materials were delivered to a jobsite than purchased, they will have the ability to dispute the bill by providing proof of the exact quantity delivered.
  • Providing GPS data to customers also benefits logistics fleets:  Third party logistics fleets also benefit from allowing their customers to use their GPS tracking data. Providing construction businesses access to current vehicle locations will decrease customer service calls requesting ETAs on deliveries, allowing dispatchers to focus on their own operations. Providing access to this data will also enhance customer service by helping customers stay on top of materials delivered and gain the ability to win a billing dispute. Using a GPS tracking system will allow logistics fleets to provide a higher level of customer service, ensure a long lasting relationship with their customers and increase their own efficiency as well.

For construction businesses, it is beneficial to work with a third-party logistics partner that tracks their trucks to improve on-site operations and prevent unnecessary costs. There are many other use cases for GPS tracking to streamline construction management.