Fleet management systems continue to evolve and as electronic logbooks and vehicle tracking become mandatory, small to large fleets will be required to implement telematics into their fleets. Telematics encompasses telecommunications, vehicular technologies, for instance, road transportation, road safety, electrical engineering (sensors, instrumentation, wireless communications, etc.), and computer science (multimedia, Internet, etc.). When delivered correctly the technology makes a driver’s life easier, their vehicles safer, and helps transportation companies operate more efficiently and become more profitable. Dan De Palma – VP of Sales & Marketing at Streamline sat with us to unpackage the scope of what telematics covers in modern day transportation.
Streamline is a division of Arrow which took over the telematics systems which were being used in their own fleet. Arrow with over 1,000 employees and 400 trucks ships wood, steel, building material, liquids, bulk commodities, and everything from oil field mats to batteries. Arrow’s use of the technology and their ability to test within their own fleet expedited the advancement of there telematics division. But Dan is quick to explain that once Streamline offered it to the market including friendly competitors additional feedback and challenges allowed them to develop stronger products for a wider range of customer’s needs.
Streamline offers three primary products, each of which integrate with the other. The NavistreamOn-Board Intelligence platform, cloud and tablet based telematics SaaS; The vehicle automation and IoT technology platform centered around the NaviLink Vehicle Gateway and NaviLink Vehicle Hub; and a TMS called Degama. The integration of the three platforms allows the company to offer a full suite solution to any fleet from small to large or to sell product lines individually.
During the show Dan outlined some of the challenges of introducing new technology to drivers and companies, but he explained how in both groups, who were hesitant, quickly found once they added products such as Navistream they realized telematics and vehicle automation technology platforms are not limiting but “streamline” standard processes and provide information that improves performance. Information that once took paperwork and a meeting now is sent to the driver in real time, allowing the operator to maximize performance and limit both safety risks and wear and tear on the equipment.
Dan explained how automation and AI in the transportation and trucking industry will become a key component of Telematics. One example is speed limits in high risk areas such as job sites, cities, and even high risk sections on a highway. Vehicle automation technology will not only monitor but control acceleration, breaking, and speed. This instantly protects drivers from being fined for violations, it ensures the truck’s owners have peace of mind that their assets are operating safely and efficiently with minimal wear, and gives the public safer interaction with the transportation and trucking industry.
Like many people in the industry Dan has spent years in the transportation sector including working for over 8 years for the shipping giant Maersk. Which he explains was key for developing professional skills and fully valuing systems in place to operate a large company with many moving parts. He discussed transitioning from a company like Arrow to its startup division and learning to navigate the pressure and challenges of a new company. He talked about how he relates being a goalie coach in the WHL for over 12 years to how he leads within Streamline. In some ways episode 18 of The Crownsmen Podcast is as much about leadership and excellence as it is about transportation and technology!
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