Construction projects are often run to particularly tight schedules, which means that any unscheduled downtime and delays can have a damaging knock-on effect for other projects. Technologies such as telematics are helping to boost efficiency and cut costs on-site, providing businesses with a range of reports across different areas, enabling them to monitor and reduce waste.
Q: How does idle time affect dump truck efficiency?
A: Idle time can be a significant cause of inefficiency in the construction sector. In a nutshell, the term ‘idle time’ refers to the amount of time the ignition is left on while the vehicle concerned is stationary. Cutting down on idle time is therefore a quick and relatively easy way to cut down your carbon footprint while also reducing costs. Some idle time is of course unavoidable, for example when using equipment which makes it necessary to leave the engine idling. However, telematics systems make excessive idle time easy to identify, making it possible to distinguish between unavoidable idle time and unnecessary idle time. Idle time summary reports provide a detailed breakdown of idle time so that working (i.e. necessary) idle time can be calculated as a proportion of idle time as a whole. This should make it relatively simple to determine where there is room for improvement.
Q: Can technology be used to help cut dump truck fuel consumption?
A: Efficient fuel use is also crucial to overall dump truck efficiency. Vehicle tracking systems can have a significant positive impact in this regard. They provide a finely-detailed picture of fuel consumption, enabling managers to distinguish patterns of unnecessary or inefficient fuel usage. For example, telematics systems can provide reports of fuel usage over the preceding 24-hour period, which makes it relatively simple to highlight any anomalies, pre-empt potential faults and manage fuel costs virtually in real time. Furthermore, this can even be broken down to track fuel burn on individual job sites, allowing for comparisons across different sites and projects. This can facilitate significant improvements with regard to dump truck fuel usage.
Q: How can vehicle tracking help deliver improvements to driver performance?
A: One of the key advantages of adopting vehicle tracking technology is that it offers so much data into driver performance. Dump trucks are no exception to this. Telematics systems can highlight a range of undesirable or risky driver behaviours, which over time can adversely affect vehicle performance and efficiency. They also enable businesses to determine what is expected of drivers and how they should perform; they can then measure this performance by their chosen yardsticks. They can use this detailed information to provide useful and clear feedback to drivers, and create training and development programmes tailored to individual requirements and eradicating specific problems.
Q: What is cycle time, and how does it affect dump truck efficiency?
A: Cycle time is the total time taken from the start to the end of a particular process. The longer the cycle time, the tighter a construction firm’s margins are likely to be – and this is obviously hugely important. There are some unavoidable factors, such as inclement weather, which can have an adverse effect on cycle time. However, many of the factors that serve to increase cycle time are avoidable, and relate to waste in the construction process. Vehicle tracking systems can help firms cut down on cycle time. For example, cycle and dwell reports provide measurements of vehicles’ delivery times, regardless of end location and whether or not it has been visited before. These reports are broken down into several specific sections, including travel time, delivery time, on-site time and return journey time. This makes it straightforward to deduce where the greatest inefficiencies are across the whole process, and put measures in place to reduce these.