GPS Tracking Improves Safety for Agricultural Services Business

When agricultural contracting and feed supply business Jackson Holmes first began thinking of how to improve health and safety for their employees, one of the ideas was to install GPS tracking on not only their road vehicles, but on all their operator-based machinery as well. “We wanted GPS on all our agricultural machines,” says General Manager Todd Holmes. “They range from tractors, loaders and harvesters to trucks, utes and SUVs.”

While health and safety was the primary reason, Todd says that they were keen to improve their servicing scheduling as well. “We wanted to be able to track the hours and kilometres that were being clocked up,” he explains. “To be able to see that in real-time would be a big help when it came to knowing when to schedule a service.”

Jackson Holmes began investigating GPS options. Their initial research turned up solutions that were based largely on being able to claim back road user charges (RUC), which wasn’t a major concern for them. “That doesn’t apply to a lot of our machines,” Todd explains. “They spend a lot of time off the road. What Fleetpin were offering was best suited to what we needed. There wasn’t a whole lot of other stuff that we didn’t need that we’d still be paying for. So that’s the one we went with, and we started installing them on our fleet about halfway through last year.”

Since implementing the Fleetpin solution, Todd says it’s lessened their health and safety concerns. “We can see where all the operators are, when they get home, or back to the yard,” he says. “It works better than the buddy-type system we had been using, when it came to making sure everyone’s safe.”

Todd emphasises that because their business involves many of their staff working at different locations, at a 150km radius of where they’re based, it’s important to be able to keep tabs on people and machinery. “The staff who use it like it a lot,” he says. “It’s on their phones, which means they don’t need to be in the office to use it, so there’s a lot of flexibility. That’s a bonus in this kind of work, where people are in a lot of different locations and moving around.”

Being able to keep track of how far a vehicle has gone, or how many hours a machine has been operating, has enabled Jackson Holmes to become more efficient with their vehicle servicing. “We can see at a glance what they’ve clocked up, without having to ask the individual operators,” says Todd. “It’s made scheduling services much easier – our service manager can just look up the app on his phone and see what machines are needing to be serviced soon. Alerts pop up to remind him as well.”

Because the Fleetpin solution offers real-time tracking, Jackson Holmes can now look at machinery in a particular location and gauge their progress. “We can see where they are in a paddock, and get an idea of how far through a job they are,” Todd explains. “Our operations guys can see exactly where people are and get an idea of how much longer they’ve got to go on a job. It makes it easier for them to sort out the next job, it’s another scheduling bonus.”

“It’s really the best solution that we found, for a plant-based business, that doesn’t have a lot of vehicles that are on the road,” Todd concludes. “It’s definitely the most cost-effective, and it’s improved our efficiencies and our health and safety processes.”

If you’d like to improve efficiencies and health and safety in your business, and you’re keen to find out how Fleetpin can help you meet those challenges, don’t hesitate to get in touch.