Editor's note: Today's guest blogger is Mario Brandao, CTO of T Dispatch, a fast growing global provider of fleet management software. This post is part of our series on the Transport and Logistics Industry and the ways they’re relying on Google Maps for Business to get people, products and assets to their destinations faster.
If you’re like me, wherever you are in the world, you often depend on the knowledge of taxi and minicab drivers to get you where you want to be. And the firms that manage, equip and train these drivers are on a constant quest to improve the way their cars get around the many cities they travel around in. We started our company back in 2010 with the aim of creating an affordable mapping and dispatch technology that could be used by all sizes of fleet companies to become more efficient and more profitable.
Our clients tell us that drivers can spend around 30% of their time with the car empty; this is ‘dead’ mileage, which is costly and bad for the environment. We use Google Maps and an intelligent autodispatch algorithm to send jobs to the nearest driver, to find jobs within their catchment area and even to allocate jobs on their route home at the end of a shift. Controllers can create and dispatch a booking within 15 seconds, and we’re able to reduce time spent ‘empty’ by up to 50%.
Google Tracks API makes it easy to pinpoint exactly where their drivers are at any one time, allowing jobs to be allocated more efficiently by dispatchers. And as this location data can be saved for up to ten years, clients can also use the technology to recognize trends and patterns and create more efficient processes in due course. Google’s snap-to-road tool even helps call centre dispatch managers to find out which side of the road the driver is on, which is especially helpful in some cities with complicated one way systems.
In the future we plan to integrate live weather reports, traffic information and use historical data to predict where busy areas will be, allowing fleets to anticipate where to send the drivers.
From a driver’s point of view, not only does the software help calculate the fastest route with the least mileage, but with Google Directions, drivers are able to calculate directions between locations before setting off, which prevents them from getting lost. Most importantly, most people are familiar with Google Maps and find it easy to use - which is important in a job when you’re often dealing with stressful circumstances like traffic and road closures.
Google Maps has played a crucial role in helping us grow and move into new markets seamlessly - we’ve won clients across six continents, in over 30 different countries. I’m now looking forward to taking our technology with us to our next area of expansion - South America.