No fleet of vehicles is easy to manage, but healthcare fleets are particularly stressful. Not only are there the usual factors to consider, like driver safety, administration and route optimisation, but also the health outcomes of patients. Unlike other fleets, those who drive and manage healthcare vehicles hold the wellbeing of others in their hands.
Put simply, logistics solutions make any fleet more efficient. It uses internet-powered smarts to lighten the considerable administrative burden of managing a fleet, optimises driver and vehicle performance and drastically improves customer satisfaction.
For managers of healthcare organisations and owners of healthcare fleets, it yields two key benefits. Firstly, reduced fuel and administrative overheads. Secondly, and more importantly, increased productivity: more people can be helped in less time.
How logistics help you
Logistics solutions implement both hardware, in the form of sensors put on your vehicles, and software. The software uses information from these sensors to keep you abreast of your entire fleet at any time, as well as in touch with your drivers.
Instead of phoning or emailing your drivers to find their location or get a status update, their live position will be available to you within a logistics platform via an up-to-date map. This comes with an ETA to their current destination, which makes organising the next crucial job easier.
As for the drivers themselves, they get route-optimisation tips based on live traffic updates. Management can setup and modify daily programs, meaning drivers are seamlessly notified if there are any additional pickups they need to make enroute to a hospital or healthcare institution, and know exactly where to go next once they complete a job.
Driver safety is also a key element of fleet management technology – there’s no good in trying to help others if your own staff are at risk. Logistics solution integrate sensors that analyse vehicle performance, alerting drivers and management to any vehicle parts in need of maintenance.
Similarly, logistics software monitors driver performance. It alerts the driver if they’re behaving recklessly or offers tips, if appropriate, on how to drive in a more fuel-efficient manner. (If they habitually accelerate too quickly, for instance, or change gears unnecessarily.) Such data is also compiled into a report for management, offering clear data by which to chart driver competence and manage driver training.
How logistics helps patients
Of course, it’s not just fleet managers who benefit from the efficiencies logistics solutions provide. The goal of any healthcare enterprise is to help to those who need it, so any solution needs to tangibly benefit patients.
The same platform that keeps management up-to-date on their drivers’ location also lets customers, be they healthcare institutions or individuals, keep track. Driver location is updated on the customer’s portal, meaning they can plan around the driver’s specific arrival time. This allows for healthcare staff to plan around an accurate ETA, allowing them to plan their time properly
Importantly in such a dynamic industry, drivers can be immediately alerted about any change of plans they may have to make based on customer needs. This feature can save essential minutes by streamlining the chain of communication between customer, driver and manager.
For fleet managers within the healthcare industry, logistics solutions provide convenience while reducing costs. However, the key benefit isn’t financial efficiency, but temporal efficiency. In an industry where time can be an invaluable asset, logistics solution save it.