Most organizations still follow a paper-and-phone-based transportation process. This comes with a diverse set of challenges, most notably the difficulty of scaling such models as an organization grows. Apart from skyrocketing costs and revenue leakages, confusion, lack of accountability, and unnecessary expenditures in managing employee transportation also loom large. Transport Automation Systems are aimed at overcoming these challenges.
Essentially, these systems are tech-focused and end-to-end Transport-as-a-Service tools that facilitate seamless solutions to employee transportation processes that include employee rostering, fleet planning & management, cab monitoring and billing & MIS. By utilizing cutting-edge technologies enabled by IoT, Artificial Intelligence, and basic workflow automation, such companies can offer a host of benefits for corporates, some of which are mentioned below:
One of the most widely-appreciated benefits of automation is the fact that it saves time and effort. Planning the transportation for a 1000 employee 24X7 operation every day and ensuring that all employees are picked and dropped safely requires a fairly large, experienced ops team. This makes automation a much more attractive alternative. Transport Automation Systems offer rostering, fleet planning, fleet deployment, and billing services. To a driver and an employee, it feels like an uber app, with the driver receiving pick/drop instructions, route guidelines and the employee getting cab information based on her chosen time of travel. An additional transport desk interface helps in collating all the cab requests, clubbing employees into cabs based on preset rules and finally tracking all cabs which are transporting employees until employees are dropped safely. Any route deviations or stoppages are highlighted and female only cabs are tracked in greater detail. All this with a click of a button. Further, data and insights collected on a day-to-day basis from drivers, employees, and transport managers can be consolidated and interpreted in an efficient manner through automated processes, leaving human agents with sufficient time to focus on more pressing concerns.
The safety and security of employees is the overarching goal of company-sponsored transport systems. Owing to rotational shifts and increasing focus on women safety procedures, it is essential for companies to provide cabs that ensure the safe pick-up and drop of employees. Transport Automation System providers come equipped with robust security features such as built-in physical panic buttons in cars, App based SOS alarm, real-time vehicle tracking, number masking facility so that employees and drivers do not need to share their numbers, and driver & cab profiling/background verification. They also provide employees with a one-click confirmation option to notify their employers when they board cabs and finally reach their destination. For women passengers, automation systems also offer automated safe drop confirmations to check if the employee has reached home safe. These alarm systems help the transport team become efficient and help in managing scale. Through these features, corporates can ensure the utmost security of their employees and ward off untoward incidents, which can cause severe damage to the organization’s reputation.
Transport is one of the most audited functions within Corporate Services. Since this is traditionally a phone and paper-based service process, it has been difficult to track how many trips were executed at scale. Revenue leakages and corruption is common. An automation tool digitizes the entire system and stores information on a cloud. Moreover, with automated billing system and a digital trail for any data correction and inclusion, the system becomes leakage proof and error free. In addition, all compliance document related to car and driver and stored in the cloud for easy retrieval at any point. Any upcoming document expiries can be tracked and renewed well in advance.
Conventional manually-managed transportation systems can lead to financial losses at multiple levels. Traditional cab services employed by corporates usually charge a large lump sum amount per trip to transport employees anywhere in the city. This is done to keep the billing simple. Therefore, corporates sometimes shell out significantly more on a per kilometre basis if the employees stay close to the office. This results in companies paying exorbitant sums significantly higher than what an uber would have actually cost for the same distance.
Using Transport Automation Systems, Corporates can now structure favourable billing models based on actual GPS logged kilometres. This can help corporates save a considerable sum of money. Moreover, being able to digitally track the kilometres travelled by each cab helps the Corporate analyse their costs better to negotiate better with their cab vendors. Usually, corporates save between 10-20% by just realigning their contracts to actual km travelled. Secondly, due to automated routing, a fresh route can be created for the employees every day, resulting in better vehicle occupancy. This results in efficient fleet planning and therefore reduction in about 5-10% of the cost.
Often, employees reach late to work due to delayed cab pickups or due to poor route planning due to clubbing of employees in cabs. This significant loss of productivity is particularly undesirable in high-intensity, time-sensitive sectors such as IT/ITES, BPO, and KPO. Moreover, longer travel times per day can lead to poor health and fatigue among employees, while extreme cases can lead to attrition. Automated Transport Systems utilize artificial intelligence to identifying routes with the least traffic congestion, based on time and day. Post such analysis, these systems automatically create the shortest and most time-efficient routes for transporting employees. By reaching to and from work on time, employees can enjoy the much sought-after work-life balance and offer their 100% at work.
The cab sector in India is highly unorganized. Fleet operators employ undocumented and unverified drivers, putting the safety of employees in jeopardy. Transport Automation Systems allow companies to integrate driver profiles into their system in order to have access to detailed information about them. These systems also provide an efficient feedback system through which employees can rate drivers and leave comments about their behaviour and driving skills. Advanced AI based technological systems integrated into cabs can keep a track of rash driving behaviour such as overspeeding, sudden braking, sharp U-turn etc and provide extensive information on the driving pattern by leveraging the driver’s smartphone sensors. All these options ensure employee satisfaction with company transportation services, along with better employee safety.
Transport Automation Systems benefit the management as much as they benefit employees. With an end-to-end transport management system in place, companies can increase profitability while ensuring that theirs is an organization completely compliant with the employee safety and security norms. Companies offering superlative cab services also have happier employees who feel a sense of security while travelling to and from work, day after day.