How to choose a telematics solution for public works

Learn how to choose the right telematics solution and vendor for your public works agency and infrastructure maintenance needs. Use these five evaluation questions. 

Not all telematics solutions are created equal. Once you’ve identified the need to add critical connected vehicle data into your fleet management toolbox, you’ll come to find that telematics providers have very different offerings. 

For public works agencies, choosing the right solution that meets your immediate and future requirements is fundamental, but the selection process can be overwhelming. Luckily, we’ve compiled some key questions to ask and factors to consider in this handy checklist.

Five key questions to help choose a telematics solutions provider

As with other technology purchases, your public works agency is going to weigh its options carefully. Budgets and timelines might be top of mind, but there are other important considerations to think about before moving forward with a telematics provider.

Here are the five key questions to help frame your decision-making process:

What are your objectives and requirements?

Start your planning process for a telematics purchase long before you select a vendor. You’ll want to have a clear understanding of the current challenges your public works agency is facing, as well as any future mandates that are set to pass that could influence your fleet. 

These issues are likely the driving force behind making a switch to telematics in the first place. It’s important to choose a solution partner that can help support your efforts in meeting your priorities, strategies and business goals.

Whether your fleet is looking to focus on safety initiatives, optimize material and cost management, boost compliance, enhance route optimization, meet sustainability targets or increase fuel savings, it’s best to have those goals established before evaluating vendors.

What are the key attributes you’re looking for in a telematics partner?

Maybe it’s a proven track record of success with many years of service. Perhaps it’s about the customer service and collaboration possible with your solution partner. Identify your must-have vendor criteria upfront to eliminate a lot of the guesswork when you’re evaluating the different providers and what they offer.

Who else have they helped?

Recommendations are a great way to feel more confident in your decision, especially when comparing other public works agencies’ success stories. Asking for evidence of how a vendor has helped other agencies in the past will provide you with key insights into how a telematics implementation is handled, from initial consultation through to installation and outcomes. Dive deep into whether projects stayed on budget, met compliance regulations and were implemented in a fair timeline.

What are your key measures for success?

When taking a look at those past success stories, keep in mind what a successful implementation will look like for your agency. What does a smooth onboarding process look like with your stakeholders? What results do you need to see in the short term? With everyone on the same page for what success looks like, it will make for an easier purchase and adoption process.

What ongoing support is offered?

Once you’ve made the purchase, you’ll also want to ensure that your solution partner is with you every step of the way, answering any questions and removing obstacles for a successful implementation. Think about the levels of support you’ll require in each stage of deployment. 

For onboarding, will your vendor support you with project management, solution engineering, field service and training programs? And for post-deployment, will they offer account management, solutions engineering, technical support, and ongoing education? 

Finding the right partner isn’t just about the initial sale. Make sure you’ve got the right support system in place so you can get the most out of your telematics solution.


Choosing wisely

There are a lot of public works fleet management solutions on the market. Arm yourself with a solid checklist of questions to ask potential telematics vendor partners. You’ll be able to navigate the purchase decision effectively and choose the partner that makes sense for your agency.

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