Easy access to data needed to maximise fleet connected car potential
Much easier access to the data generated by connected cars is needed to maximise the wide range of potential benefits they could bring to fleets. While there are now increasing numbers of connected cars on the road, there are no direct ways of reaching the information they generate in real time.
Nazma Meer, growth strategy manager, explains: “For some years, we have been promised a future where a company car diagnoses its own faults or knows when a routine service is due, and sends the necessary data through the mobile network to be actioned by the fleet through their service and maintenance processes.
“Clearly, there are a whole host of benefits to be gained, from service booking with less human intervention through to minimising downtime by rectifying faults before they cause a breakdown.
“However, this isn’t yet happening and the reason is that the data generated by the cars isn’t easily available. This creates a gap in the overall process that is very frustrating.
“For example, one manufacturer collects connected car information for leasing companies but then sends it by e-mail as a CSV file, meaning that it is not seen for days, by which time it is probably too late. This is processing 2019’s data using 1999’s methods.
“What is needed is a single source or small number of sources that collect this data and make it available to fleet operators.”
Nazma says that the situation is frustrating for us because 1link Service Network is already used by nearly all major leasing fleets in the UK to manage their SMR needs.
“Our platform is essentially ready to receive connected car data. Once it was collected from the vehicle, we would be able to use it as part of a holistic solution that seamlessly takes that information, contacts the driver, books the car in for work and then controls the whole service and maintenance process end-to-end.
“It is a way of handling SMR that benefits the driver, the fleet and the Service Centre and, with access to data, we could do it soon.”
Fleets using 1link Service Network total more than four million company vehicles and Nazma says that there is definite demand from leasing companies and other operators for the technology.
“When we talk to major fleet operators about this issue, there is a clear sense of frustration. We could take a substantial step forward in SMR management. The technology is essentially already there.”