AfMA 2020 Industry News Broadcast
2020 AfMA State of the Fleet Industry News Broadcast
On the 9th & 10th of December the Australasian Fleet Managers Association (AfMA) held a virtual news broadcast.
The topic of this broadcast was ‘State of the fleet industry’, with the virtual broadcast giving participants an insight into the fleet industry and how it has been affected in 2020 by the COVID-19 crisis.
The event, being presented virtually for the first time ever, was hosted by former ABC radio presenter Jon Faine.
In all, there were over 30 speakers taking part, with IntelliTrac Group CEO Dean Calapai along with a panel of experts in fleet, sharing and providing knowledge into the current state of the fleet industry.
As part of the event, Dean was fortunate enough to speak on the topic of ‘Sharing Data & access to OBD’s’. A crucial issue to the future of the fleet industry.
Below is a transcript of the pivotal insight Dean provided on this issue:
Dean: “Let’s have a look at the origins of OBD to begin with, OBD was introduced by the vehicle manufacturers as a diagnostic tool and then mandated over in the United States to monitor and report on vehicle emissions.
It was never actually intended to be used to extract data, whilst the vehicle was in motion. So ultimately from our point of view we've been extracting data from the OBD port for many years and providing engine management information to fleet managers.
I'm thinking about what the relevance is of all that data and where it can take us in the future and what we're going to be missing out on so undoubtedly the manufacturers will be
storing that data and there's talk about “central neutral servers” that the manufacturers
will be transmitting their information to and either providing that telematics
data through their own platforms or making it available to telematics companies such as ourselves to aggregate the data.
The challenges for fleet managers are going to be for example:
‘Am I running a fleet of Toyota’s exclusively or do I have a mix of Toyota’s and Fords’ and so forth, and how am I going to integrate all of that data into one single telematics platform.
These are the sort of challenges that the telematics industry and fleet managers are going to be facing post 2023. So from our point of view the engine management data is just one part of the puzzle in telematics and fleet management. This data is seldom used or required in passenger and light commercial fleets. It is more relevant in heavy vehicle fleets.
There are other bits to the puzzle that fleet managers are looking for such as vehicle utilization, work health and safety data such as driver behaviour and alerts based on SOS, collisions and rollovers, as well as other specific KPI’s such as PTO utilisation, field service task scheduling, actual vs scheduled service delivery and more.
Jon Faine: ‘Australia's just a very small part of a much bigger global search for a solution here. What's our best role? Do we just fold our arms sit back and wait and say ‘well once you guys sort it out in you know Detroit or Brussels or wherever it's going to be resolved?
just let us know and we'll tag along?’
Dean: ‘What will happen will be determined by the manufacturers and what data they make available to third party providers. Currently manufacturers do not make all data available on the OBD port. For example, some manufacturers will not make engine temperature data available on the OBD port. At the end of the day I think the market will speak for itself.
For example, if a particular manufacturer is not making its data available through an open-source platform, (and I have had this discussion with multiple clients), you know if we're running a series of vehicles or a series of plant and equipment, we can't be logging into four or five platforms.
Bottom line is the market will talk and walk if they have to if the manufacturers aren't providing a solution which can be aggregated and integrated across multiple platforms.
Let's take that a step further, the OBD layer sits above the CANBUS layer, so
all the information is transmitted in the vehicle on the CANBUS layer and certain information is made available on the OBD layer so they (the manufacturers) can turn off the OBD layer, but we've still got all these signals transferring on the CANBUS layer.
That (the CanBus Layer) will always be there, so I think what will end up happening is smart organizations such as mark's organisation at GEOTAB and ourselves and some of the others, we'll start looking at what information we can decode (and effectively and ethically hack) out of the CANBUS layer.
That's been going on for years anyway. So, the innovative businesses will always find a solution. The issue that fleet managers have is once the OBD layer is shut down is ‘what do I do?’
Do I effectively have two telematics products in my vehicle?
Do I utilise the manufacturer's telematics product which will provide me all the engine management parameters that available and that I may need?
What happens to all the other information that I may need? For example:
All the compliance data such as pre-start checklist electronic work diaries, driver identification, field service management data, and SOS.
We were just talking about the fleet safety award and UEM Edgenta they're an IntelliTrac client which have utilised the IntelliTrac advanced telematics solution combining parameters far above the monitoring engine management systems.
There are safety issues involved in telematics solutions.
There's also field service management allowing organisations to maximize the value of the asset by combining efficient task scheduling and carpooling.
A great telematics solution provides insights into fleet utilization, task scheduling, service maintenance, employee safety such as SOS, Driver behaviour, Fatigue Management, Pre Start Check Lists etc.
I think it will be a long time before the OEM telematics solutions and the OEM data feeds are going to be able to provide the data rich solution that many fleet managers require.
I'll give you another example: Mario from City of Moreland, another IntelliTrac client. They have a truck bodies fitted with garbage compactors or street sweeper units.
We're monitoring what these street sweepers are doing. Whether the brooms are down or the brooms are up. Based on that data we can determine street sweeping performance KPI’s such as actual vs scheduled works.
In the case of garbage compactors, we are monitoring how many bins they've picked up and where they have been picked up. We can combine that data against council resident data to monitor actual bins lifted against the number of resident bins that should have been presented for pick up. Utilising this data we can plan better routes and plan for growth in the municipality and the effect it will have on waste collection resources.
Garbage trucks and sweepers combine telematics with data terminals that navigates them along optimised routes and allows operators to log issues and have a video telematics component stream live video of logged issues such as pot holes, blocked trains and contaminated bins. It will be a long time before the manufacturers develop product verticals into niche markets.
At the end of the day, they (vehicle manufacturers) will need to be sharing the data with organizations such as ourselves. One day in the near future we may be getting a data feed from the manufacturer with all the engine management parameters and there may also be a second telematics device in the vehicle which will give us the data that's not available through the manufacture.
So, fleet managers may be forced to have two telematics devices being aggregated all on the one platform. Some of what we're actually seeing at the moment is some of our clients are saying:
“Well, we're not really interested in the manufacturer's telematics device. Just install the IntelliTrac system”
Because we're getting a lot more data and data that's relevant to us from the aftermarket system because you can tailor it now.’
Jon Faine: ‘Do you think this will resolved by the regulators, the ACC for instance or do you think it will end up in the courts in Australia.’ (In relation to being a legal ‘hacker’ in obtaining data)
Dean:’ I think I would have to agree, it could go either way at this stage.’
In conjunction with the panel of expert speakers, AfMA also presented several awards to those in the industry who have performed astoundingly within their field.
Fortunately for us at IntelliTrac, two of our esteemed clients were privileged to receive these awards for their excellence.
Australian client Moreland City Council was awarded with the 2020 Fleet Environment Award for their implementation of electrical vehicles within their fleet to help reduce carbon emissions and ultimately play their part in the environment.
Secondly, Malaysian clients UEM Edgenta were awarded with the 2020 Fleet Safety Award. UEM play a major part in South East Asia when it comes to resource and asset management, notably health care support services and highway maintenance.
Having successfully implemented the IntelliTrac solution amongst their fleet, UEM have reduced the number of potential risks, number of accidents & fatalities. Key data points that UEM have observed is a 98% reduction in speed violations, 92% reduction in traffic summons, immediate reduction in vehicle idling and increased awareness in tyre pressure monitoring and alerts.
Overall, the AfMA news broadcast was a successful and informative live-streamed event that ultimately united those in the fleet industry via an online platform. We look forward to the future events from AfMA and most importantly, the AfMA fleet conference in May 2021.