Forwarder Justus P. sits at his computer in his office and uses the mouse to draw a circle on a map around a customer’s site, 439 km away, a so-called geofence. He sets up in the software that he would like to be notified automatically as soon as a driver arrives there, meaning when the truck crosses the virtual border. Just like this, he has already created a whole range of different automations for his planning and communication. These settings will help him keep a better eye on and coordinate his fleet of 400 drivers and hundreds of customers.
A few hours later, driver Andreas F. reaches the destination for his delivery, the site of that exact customer. At the same time Justus P. receives an automated message at the headquarters informing him that his driver has arrived at the said address. Now he knows, even before the truck has reached its final unloading position, that this delivery is on time and therefore the second delivery to the next customer is also likely to be punctual.
Geofences, virtual circular or polygonal borders in two or three-dimensional space, can be used to automatically trigger a variety of special actions based on GPS coordinates. This functionality makes them ideal helpers for many logistical applications.
Geofencing enables real-time control and checking whether planning and reality in delivery traffic match. Did the truck arrive at the customer on time? How long was he with the customer? When did he return to the depot?
Real-time access to such information enables more precise planning, precise communication with branches and customers, and faster intervention in the event of delays due to more transparent supply chains.
Geofencing options are a modular part of the TISLOG logistics software since 2015 and today we would like to use this example to show you how much potential they offer for your logistics.
The virtual border can be used for the following applications, for example:
- Automatic arrival and departure time determination
- Automatic stop processing
- Automatic alarms and forwarding in the event of deviations from the planned numbers
Scenario 1: The depot for general cargo as a geofence
Local trucks leave the depot in the morning to drive to their delivery areas. They complete the delivery and pick-up tour and then return to the depot. The start and end of the tour are important for monitoring the planned tour times, because a late tour start, for example, can jeopardize appointments. A late return may cause delay and problems with reloading into the main runs.
A geofence that depicts the virtual terrain of the depot can be used to automatically set the tour start as soon as the vehicle crosses the virtual border without the driver having to do anything.
If there is a difference between the planned departure and reality, an alarm is triggered in the system that informs the personnel responsible for planning and, if necessary, the driver himself.
On the other hand, a correspondingly created second geofence at a certain distance from the depot can report the expected arrival time of local transport trucks at the depot, for example, one hour before the vehicles arrive at the depot.
In the TISLOG logistics software, such a geofence is also very useful for the “Yard Check” function. The logistics app can automatically assign the correct depot if equipment such as swap bodies and trailers is removed from or parked on the yard.
Scenario 2: The customer as a geofence
In the TISLOG logistics software, geofences can be automatically placed around pick-up or delivery addresses as soon as the data is received. The geofences can be used to automatically set a status on arrival and departure. An additional condition (such as length of stay> x minutes) can be set to trigger an alarm for the dispatcher if planned times are exceeded.
Another example: In silo and bulk goods transport or when delivering to construction sites, trucks frequently commute back and forth between loading and unloading points. For your billing, it may relevant to determine the number of tours driven. This can be fully automated with geofencing. The driver does not have to do anything!
Scenario 3: Process control using geofences
In the TISLOG logistics software, for example, it can be set that the activation of certain menu buttons on the mobile device is only possible within a geofence. In this way, you can ensure, for example, that a delivery status can only be set after the truck has arrived at the customer and not on the go.
Scenario 4: Pallet dealer with geofence
Familiar pallet dealers can be created as geofence. If one of your truck drivers approaches these pallet dealers, you will be informed and can check whether it is a legitimate order.
Scenario 5: Virtual radar control on your farm
Are there speed limits at your forwarding yard or at one of your customers’ premises that you would like to monitor? For speed monitoring, create a geofence with the appropriate maximum speed. The TISLOG logistics software informs you automatically as soon as a driver exceeds the limit you set.
Basic settings and automatic alarms to different systems
Geofences can be assigned for vehicles, fleets and branches. Alarms can be controlled via geofence in such a way that they can only be triggered selectively by certain vehicles.
Alarms can be easily transmitted to connected systems such as TMS or subcontractor systems, accounting systems and BI tools via the TISLOG data hub.
Geofencing is available as an additional module for our TISLOG logistics software and is constantly being developed further. We have ideas for many other applications – you too?
Or would you simply like to learn more about the geofencing options in the TISLOG logistics software?