James House
Jun 25, 2021

GPS tracking for construction equipment is an extremely useful technology for any construction business. GPS tracking gives you a comprehensive view of your fleet assets. The real value of GPS tracking, however, comes in the insights you get from that comprehensive view. GPS is more than a fun accessory, if you know how to use the data GPS trackers provide. When you've got a platform that gives insights to help turn GPS data into insights and savings, you learn that a GPS tracking system is a business necessity.

By the end of this post, you'll know why GPS tracking can benefit your construction company, and how the right platform turns that GPS data into benefits.

What is GPS Tracking?

GPS tracking is a process that uses global positioning system (GPS) technology to track where something is. The GPS technology in question is a "constellation" of satellites overhead, and the device in your hand. If you've used Google or Apple Maps on your smart phone, you've used GPS. And if you've gotten directions on your phone, you know how helpful GPS tracking can be in your personal life. Fortunately, it can help your business even more.

GPS tracking helps construction businesses track their fleet assets to save time and improve visibility and leverage related insights from tracking data to make key business improvements that can lead to savings. When applied via a plug-in tracking device, GPS tracking can collect a lot of data about your assets: where they spend their time, how they're used, how often, and how efficiently. Leveraging GPS tracking for your construction fleet management can help contribute to much more than just location. If you want to tap into that your greater construction fleet data, you'll need a platform like Tenna's.

How does GPS Tracking work?

fleet-management-trackersIf you've heard of Space Force, you've heard of the people behind global positioning systems (GPS). The Space Force has a "constellation" of 31 GPS satellites in orbit at any given time, 24 of which are in use, making up the GPS system we all use. Of those 24? At least 4 are overhead at any moment. Your phone receives signals from these four satellites, compares those coordinates, and figures out where you are.

How does this help your business? You get a better idea of your asset's exact location, thanks to the four satellites sending you information. Instead of one tracker sending a signal to a device at your headquarters, you get four satellites combining to give you a more precise sense of an asset's location.  

Tenna's solutions use GPS technology (among other technology) to give you the most up-to-date, thorough information possible. GPS locations are updated every two minutes when the asset is running (and every 23 hours when not running), so you aren't left wondering where your assets are at the end of the day (or even the end of the hour).

The TennaFLEET Tracker is one example of how Tenna turns your data into business intelligence. The tracker is a small device that can plug into any vehicle's OBD II or JBUS interface that receives data from GPS satellites, and transmits it to the platform. It also tracks and transmits other information, like engine hours, diagnostic troubleshooting codes and vehicle speed. This information is all helpful to have and contributes to other key fleet tracking use cases for contractors such as utilization, maintenance, inspections, driver safety, ELD and IFTA compliance, and more.

Why GPS Tracking Is More Than Just Dots on a Map

GPS tracking is a great way to automate compliance with regulations like ELD and IFTA. Both mandates require a dizzying amount of data collection. IFTA, for instance, requires you to keep track of not just total miles traveled, but miles traveled per jurisdiction. You’ll also need to distinguish between taxable and non-taxable miles, which makes for a confusing, multi-faceted problem.   

Tenna’s GPS tracking capability makes it easy to monitor how many miles you drove, where, and when. With Tenna, you can earmark assets that need to comply with IFTA. Tenna plugs the germane GPS data into reports that are organized by IFTA data. That way, you can view reports that organize data by jurisdiction, vehicle, or fuel type, removing the busy work from IFTA compliance.

Tenna can combine with an ELD (electronic logging device) to help you get on top of your hours of service data. Because Tenna’s GPS capabilities monitor where, when, and how often your drivers operated a vehicle, keeping accurate track of hours of service is no longer an extra headache for your employees. Better yet, Tenna can provide automatic notifications when drivers need to take a break. Tenna’s automatic GPS data collection can also help with sensitive issues, like ensuring your drivers aren’t driving more (or less) hours than regulations allow. 

How-to-Increase-Your-Fleet’s-Efficiency-and-Safety-with-TelematicsA platform that uses GPS data to provide notifications and alerts also helps make quick decisions and stay up to date on asset moves in the field. Tenna's GPS notifications and geofencing use GPS tracking to alert for potential instances of theft. D. Guerra Construction out of Texas used Tenna to track and retrieve a stolen water truck, saving $40,000 by eliminating an unnecessary replacement. 

Tenna's platform also enables you to figure out where an asset is - never an easy task if you're managing multiple job sites. That was another challenge for D. Guerra Construction. “Our main [pain point] is finding the things," says Fleet Technology Analyst, Karlo Castillo. "Instead of calling around, I can look real quick in the computer and it tells me who had it," he adds. With Tenna's GPS location intelligence, D. Guerra does away with the need to make multiple calls to find out where an asset is. That's time, and money, saved.

With Tenna's ability to track where an asset has been, you can determine which sites have used that asset most. You can also get a bird's eye view of all the assets associated with a site. Jodi Stone of Clark Equipment Rentals describes implementing Tenna's trackers as "a breeze." She adds that "the visibility on the maps for the tracking devices is spot on, and easy to see," and that even "setting a geofence is easy and quick." Where Clark’s previous attempts to get location intelligence had stalled due to difficult software, Tenna made it easy for Clark to turn GPS information into savings and earnings.

This gives you the basic landscape of GPS tracking for your heavy trucks and other construction vehicles, but there are several other ways that GPS tracking can benefit your construction fleet management processes. To get started on your GPS tracking journey and find out more about how Tenna's solutions can help your business, reach out and book a demo.

About James House