From squad cars to smartwatches, thousands of organizations have increased needs to understand where their people, devices, vehicles and equipment are at any given moment and how they move over time. The technology is now ready to do this more affordably and effectively than ever before. The general term for identifying and following the location of various things is “asset tracking”, and Google has a rich set of tools and APIs for creating these types of applications.
There are many forms of asset tracking and many different ways that asset tracking adds value to businesses. These include:
- Fleet Management/Logistics: Understanding where your trucks are, how fast they’re traveling, and planning the most effective route between multiple destinations, while accounting for traffic. This allows for savings on time, gas, and emissions.
- Internet of Things (IoT): Smart watches that track a runner’s location, current speed, and allow runners to map out their routes.
- Utilities: Managing employees and vehicles in the field, tracking their location to ensure that techs can get on site quickly, and move onto the next job.
The most effective asset tracking generally involves two steps. The first step, is tracking your assets efficiently, i.e., knowing where your assets are at any time. And, having the capability to communicate with those assets in a location aware manner. The second step, involves utilizing and analyzing the tracking information to inform your business. For example, creating a dispatching application that can visualize your entire fleet; or, looking at historic information to further optimize the deployment of assets to minimize delivery times.
Asset Tracking works well in concert with other Google tools and APIs such as the Directions API, and the places-of-interest search provided by the Places API. Take advantage of these technologies and integrate Google’s location APIs into your existing applications, where you can add valuable features such as notifying your delivery drivers of business closing times, or impending traffic before they arrive.
Having your head in the clouds is no longer a bad thing. Think ahead by leveraging Google’s Cloud to support your asset management needs.
Care to learn more about how asset tracking through Google Maps and GCP can change your business?