A fleet management system (FMS) is a way of organizing and operating a fleet of vehicles, such as cars, trucks, buses, and boats. The system tracks the vehicles' locations, speeds, and fuel consumption in order to determine the overall productivity of the fleet.

The system also keeps track of the drivers' times and routes, and automatically notifies the fleet manager when there are any problems with the vehicles or drivers.

Since every fleet is different, it is best to consult with a professional who has experience in this area. Still, if you're looking into getting an FMS for your fleet, here are some general guidelines to follow.

The more features an FMS has, the more value it tends to have. Some of the features that can be helpful are:
GPS tracking
Speed limiters
Fuel consumption monitors
Location tracking
Automatic accident notification
Driver and equipment monitoring
If your fleet travels internationally, especially across borders, some of the features that can be helpful are:
Visa/customs declaration
Bike/vehicle tagging (requires additional hardware)
Driver and passenger ID cards
GPS navigation (with maps)
Electronic toll collection

One of the most important things to consider when choosing an FMS is the security measures that are in place. This article will not cover how to secure your FMS, however, you should know that:
Every fleet is different and thus requires different levels of security.
The best level of security is a combination of hardware and software.
Only experienced professionals should be allowed to have access to the inner workings of your fleet.

Another important factor to consider when choosing an FMS is the cost. While cost is not always related to safety or security, one of the most important things to consider is how much you're willing to spend on the system. It is always a good idea to look at the cost versus the features list in order to get the best deal. It is also wise to research the different vendors and compare their prices. Finally, it's always beneficial to do some research online before buying a product as the prices and promotions can change frequently. With all the different features that an FMS has, it's important to know what your budget is before making any purchase decisions.

A fleet manager will always need to be kept up to date on the latest news and tips related to the fleet management system he or she is using. One important area that can benefit from constant updates is cybersecurity. As technologies change and people become more connected, it becomes more important to regularly update your anti-virus software and firewall settings. Still, if a malicious actor manages to steal or damage your data, you will likely know it because your fleet management system will notify you immediately.

One of the things that will quickly lead to a breakdown for any fleet is excessive wear and tear on the vehicles or equipment. This is mostly due to ineffective maintenance and poor handling of the vehicles and equipment by the drivers. Still, it's important to keep in mind that a properly maintained vehicle or piece of equipment will last much longer than one that is not. Moreover, a fleet manager must be able to quickly order parts and have them delivered to the proper location. This is especially difficult when your fleet is scattered across multiple locations and there is no way of keeping track of all the parts manually. Thus, it is best to choose an FMS that is modular and can be expanded as needed.

Global Reach
When choosing an FMS, it's imperative to keep in mind its global reach. Do you operate your fleet in a single state or nationwide? Are you willing to expand globally or are you content with local stops? Many companies, especially those in the trucking and shipping industries, operate internationally and can benefit from an FMS that is plugged in to the global digital network. Still, if you're looking for a more local reach, there are plenty of options for an FMS that limits its scope to a single state or nationwide. Moreover, if your primary concern is with regards to security, it's best to choose an FMS that is localized and only accessible via a secured connection. Regardless of your needs, it's important to research the different vendors and choose an FMS that suits you best.

An FMS can be a valuable tool for any fleet. Moreover, as technologies improve and people become more connected, it becomes more important to keep abreast of the latest news and trends related to fleet management. If your fleet travels internationally, be sure to research the different requirements and consider all the different aspects that could make this product or service valuable.