Astrata had identified that existing transport management systems were struggling to cope with the rapidly growing Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) market in Europe. Astrata’s VanLinc is a new platform designed specifically for modern LCV fleets. Telenor Connexion supplied the managed connectivity for the easy-to-use solution. VanLinc provides real-time insights on drivers, vehicles and other assets, helping businesses boost productivity and increase capacity for work globally.
Astrata Europe delivers advanced fleet management and software solutions to over 1,500 transport and logistics companies throughout Europe. Its solutions are used by industry leaders such as DHL, TNT Express, Tesco, Linde and Shell.
When Astrata identified that existing transport management systems and supply-chain solutions were struggling to cope with the rapidly growing Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) market in Europe, they set out to develop a more modern solution that would better serve fleet operator’s needs.
The easy-to-use solution provides real-time insights on drivers, vehicles and other assets, helping businesses boost productivity and increase capacity for work globally.
The increased popularity of LCVs in Europe has been driven by several market factors including the rise of e-commerce, which requires timely delivery, and the growth in popularity of ride sharing platforms. Regulatory forces have also played a role, with fleet operators turning to lighter vehicles in order to comply with tougher emissions standards.
Working with Telenor Connexion, Astrata found the support and technical solution they needed to quickly rollout VanLinc, a new platform consisting of proprietary software and hardware technology designed specifically for LCV fleets. Astrata’s VanLinc solution uses Telenor Connexion’s connectivity management solution. The onboard VanLinc computer hardware was installed in each van and it connects to the cloud via mobile IoT SIM technology. To meet platform demands it offers various functions. For instance it integrates with refrigeration systems to help maintain constant temperature control during transport. With a single stock-keeping unit (SKU) for their SIMs, Astrata can offer their VanLinc platform to customers around the world.
VanLinc offers real-time GPS tracking of all vehicles in a fleet, along with monitoring of vehicle performance. The data transmitted from vehicles is fed into the VanLinc analytics solution to optimise routes, driver behaviour, staffing and more.
When it comes to the data that is transmitted from vehicles, some fleet operators want sensitive, private data to be communicated via a secure VPN, while others choose to encrypt the data before communication and transmit over an open network.
To meet this requirement, Astrata’s new solution utilizes a dual APN SIM card which allows for split data routing. In logistics, a new value chain is being constructed around the ability to accurately track not only the location of goods but also their condition, with sensors collecting information on temperature, shock and tilt as required. Powered by worldwide connectivity, highly granular information is being brought together with advanced data processing and sharing capabilities.
As traditional supply chains struggle to address the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, access to real-time data is more vital than ever. Timely tracking is set to become an essential ingredient of future supply chains, enabling greater precision and an optimal combination of just-in-time and just-in-case methodologies – as well as the productivity enhancements that the post-pandemic world will demand.
Fleet operators in the heavily regulated trucking market are predominantly focused on using connected solutions to reduce cost of operations and meet regulatory standards. Though not as heavily regulated, LCV fleet operators face their own set of challenges.
The person behind the wheel of a van may not be a professional driver by definition. Instead, the driver’s main job could be working as an installer, engineer or technician, so they may not drive as safely or efficiently as a trained professional.
Monitoring a mobile workforce increases efficiency, which means getting more jobs done in the same amount of time.
Monitoring also allows managers to ensure that employees are where they say they are and enables them to delegate ad hoc or emergency jobs to workers in the vicinity.
Additionally, organisations can track their workforce to both ensure management control and to achieve compliance with lone worker protection regulations.
LCV fleet managers can use VanLinc not only to monitor all their vehicles, but also access and act on analytics related to driver and vehicle performance.
Importantly, the VanLinc system integrates seamlessly with other operational software and systems enabling the fleet to be connected to back office systems, such as HR and payroll – meaning working hours and overtime payments can be automated.
While both van and truck fleet managers have similar needs for driver training, fuel efficiency and vehicle or load tracking, VanLinc is more focused on the services market. VanLinc can deliver a wide range of capabilities including sub-contractor management, KPI analysis and task management.
Today with the services and support of Telenor Connexion, VanLinc is able to provide a modern solution for the Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) market, better serving fleet operator’s needs.