Johannesburg-based Globaltrack, a Technology Top 100 award winner uses a combination of GPS, GPRS and satellite tracking technology to help organisations accurately monitor their fleets, locally and throughout the African continent.
The company’s core belief is to make transport cheaper, simpler and better. As such, it doesn’t see itself as merely a tracking company, but rather as a consulting firm, whose single aim is to help the transport industry. It’s dedicated consultancy department allows it to be hands-on, get grease under its fingernails and intimately understand the sector.
Globaltrack provides the tools, know-how and the expertise to slowly and steadily increase its customers’ bottom lines. Customers are seen as partners, with loyalty being the ultimate measure of success.
CEO Pieter Smits says his is an entrepreneurial company not dependent on the growth of the economy. “Our customers are not new to tracking and fleet management; we take them away from our competitors. There is not a single customer that we have signed up in the last three years that didn’t have tracking before,” he says.
Customers feel like partners, because the company believes it needs to add value; it needs to make its customers happy. It does this by removing their pain points, like capturing and loading of weigh points and depots when transporters switch telematics service providers. With the transport business always on the go, they partner with their clients focus on their core business without the disruptions caused by switching systems.
Switch it up
Globaltrack fleets are remotely monitored, in real time through the use of GPS and GPRS technology. When vehicles enter remote areas with little or no mobile network coverage, tracking automatically switches over to satellite, while sending live updates to the company’s web-based monitoring centre, Webtrack.
Webtrack is hosted by Amazon Web Services (AWS), which is both scalable and cost-effective – benefits that are passed onto customers. Security is provided through SSL encryption and off-site backups are performed on different continents. “We try to find the balance between usability and security; that’s why, from day one, we’ve used a web-based solution so that we can perform updates remotely. Using a web-based server creates a single point of entry for data. Our uptime was 99.8% in 2015,” Smits boasts.
With satellite capability, the company is well positioned to serve the cross-border trucking fraternity, which Globaltrack believes will increase as more positive trade conditions between African states develop.
The Globaltrack system is also linked to a fuel level monitoring device called Fuel Probe, which helps organisations monitor driver behaviour, curb fuel theft and increase the efficiency of cost management.
With vast amounts of historical data stored on the Webtrack, a fleet manager can retrieve this data whenever it is needed. With a click or two, one can pull this data into reports that can readily provide a complete picture of an asset’s performance.
One staff member, with a PhD in mathematics, is responsible for machine learning and big data mining. Learning from this data gives Globaltrack the ability to predict trends and the foresight to warn its customers about future events long before they happen.
Using the Globaltrack app, it is possible to see which trucks are driving and which are standing still from anywhere in the world. Users can get real-time fuel alerts, for example, when drivers fuel up in unauthorised locations. This is a critical tool in cross-border transport, where fuel is frequently smuggled.
It is also possible to call a driver from the app directly or forward his/her details to your end customer. In this way, your customer’s customers can receive audited information about the location of their goods directly. Emailed notifications can be automatically scheduled the moment a load arrives at a border post, leaves a port or arrives at a yard.
Globaltrack professionals are on hand to train clients’ employees on how the system operates, to ensure they utilise the system effectively and gain maximum benefit. A growth specialist, through vigorous consultation with clients, performs a business audit and, thereafter, assists clients to integrate the system for optimal use.
“We want to understand our customer’s business,” continues Smits. “So, our first port of call is to see the customer’s yard and look at their operations because every company is unique. We then come up with a recommendation based on what we think the customer should do. We always provide two or three options. They then have a demo period in which we prove that we can solve what we refer to as their ‘pain points’.
Globaltrack customers can either enter into long-term leasing contracts or pay on a month-to-month basis, provided they buy the hardware upfront. They also have the option to suspend the unit should a vehicle stand for a while, with billing automatically commencing once the stationery vehicle is driven a certain distance.
“If you don’t get, in three months, three times the value back that the system costs, then we take the system out, no questions asked.”
“Our systems must work for company MD’s as much as for operations, fleet and maintenance managers. We always have about four or five people in mind when we develop our software.”
Should a local transporter suddenly secure a cross-border contract, but not want to pay exorbitant data roaming costs, they can have their unit switched over and replaced with a hybrid unit that uses the GSM and satellite technology.
Globaltrack’s maintenance module allows users to keep an eye on vehicle mileage and maintenance procedures. These tasks can be scheduled ahead of time and can also be used to keep a close track on costs or create trend analysees. The system alerts fleet managers of upcoming maintenance procedures like oil and tyre changes based on kilometres travelled, or driver behaviour, such as harsh acceleration and braking.
Innovation is at the core of the company’s existence. “We understand that we live in an ever-changing world, with business challenges becoming more sophisticated. With this vast change, we keep our fingers on the pulse, providing innovative solutions to all our fleet management services, and ensuring that all our products are adaptable and add value,” Smits adds.
“As a fleet management service provider, we aim to reduce complex challenges to simple solutions. And this comes through our vast, turnkey solutions tailor-made for a variety of clients. We are in the business of knowing and empowering our clients with the knowledge to ensure that they make the most informed and cost-effective decisions in their day-to-day operations.”
- At the heart of Globaltrack’s fleet management solutions is an on-going fostering of client partnerships
- The company’s success is owed primarily to the key values it holds, which influence its operations, products and services as well as the people it partners with.
- Mobile technicians can install units at any point during the 24/7 time cycle, so as to not impact operations.
For more information, contact www.globaltrack.com
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