Monitoring the Mobile Business

Asset tracking enables companies to track the physical location and status of any asset owned, managed or manufactured by their business. It has been typically associated with logistics and shipping firms, who use this type of M2M connectivity to track delivery vehicles and containers. But mobile asset tracking is now increasingly used by businesses in other industries to track the whereabouts of individual assets such as reusable pallets, healthcare equipment, building materials, construction equipment, perishable supply chain goods and consumer electronics.

Vodafone
Vodafone
Monitoring the mobile business White paper: M2M for Mobile Asset Tracking m2m.vodafone.com Vodafone Power to you Contents An opportunity for every enterprise ..................................................3 What challenges are businesses facing? ..........................................4 Implementation considerations ..........................................................7 Industry applications .............................................................................8 Our solution ............................................................................................ 10 Why Vodafone? ....................................................................................... 11 M2M Mobile Asset Tracking What is M2M? Machine to machine (M2M) communication is what happens when white goods, shipping containers, security cameras, TVs, industrial machinery, drinks coolers, cars — in fact, nearly any fixed or mobile assets — are connected. Using M2M, these assets can send and receive data and requests to each other and to central management systems, autonomously and often in real time, opening up a whole new world of opportunities for business agility and efficiency. An opportunity for every enterprise M2M is a growing market – Gartner1 has predicted that by 2020 we will see a 30-fold increase in the number of connected devices to 26 billion and 78% of organisations see M2M adoption as crucial to business success2. The increasing maturity and adoption of M2M has seen enterprises, and C-level executives in particular, becoming more knowledgeable about the benefits of connected devices and the possibilities they offer. Much of that growth has come from mobile asset tracking, which according to IDC3 is the next big M2M opportunity. Asset tracking enables companies to track the physical location and status of any asset owned, managed or manufactured by their business. It has been typically associated with logistics and shipping firms, who use this type of M2M connectivity to track delivery vehicles and containers. But mobile asset tracking is now increasingly used by businesses in other industries to track the whereabouts of individual assets such as reusable pallets, healthcare equipment, building materials, construction equipment, perishable supply chain goods and consumer electronics. Changing how you do business For the most part, asset tracking has been used to fix problems – theft and loss of valuable assets, inefficient processes and poor operational performance. But mobile asset tracking also has the potential to change how companies do business. And the early adopters of mobile asset tracking will be leading the way when it comes to using this technology as a platform for product innovation and new service offerings such as just-in-time (JIT) assurance, employee safety, process automation, supply chain optimisation and sales tracking. Take for example, a manufacturer sending products and parts overseas to a retailer. M2M devices with location sensors can be attached to the shipping container, or to the individual products themselves, so that the manufacturer can track the movement of the shipment. This enables the manufacturer to provide the retailer with an accurate delivery time, avoiding any unnecessary delays for either company. It also means that certain processes can be automated, such as issuing invoices, which can be done as soon as the tracking device detects that the delivery has been made. 1. http://www.gartner.com/newsroom/id/2688717 2. The M2M adoption barometer 2013, Vodafone 3. IDC 2013: Machine-to-Machine (M2M): Where Is the Market Opportunity in Europe? 3 Operational efficiency and productivity Business are frequently looking for ways to save money by streamlining their operations and reducing overheads. Tracking mobile assets enables companies to identify where they can cut costs, improve processes and increase productivity. Fuel costs Petrol prices have gone up by almost 50% since 20095, which is a significant financial burden for any organisation that’s heavily reliant on a fleet of vehicles. A mobile asset tracking solution can combine location data about each van, cab, trailer ship and aeroplane with mapping, live traffic data and upcoming job details to assign routes more efficiently. This can cut fuel costs by eliminating unnecessary mileage and idling, and maximise vehicle utilisation through backloading and shipment consolidation. Process improvements No organisation is perfect – products go missing from deliveries, equipment gets stolen or moved without being recorded, and distribution vehicles get stuck in traffic. The knock- on effects are that companies have to deal with angry customers, delayed production lines and rising replacement costs. Being able to quickly locate assets as and when you need to will help to speed up business processes and operations. Increasing visibility across a company’s portfolio of assets will mean businesses can develop more accurate, tighter supply chains. The combination of location and status data means companies can better control and manage their stock, so there will be fewer delays on production lines or when waiting for shipments, as well as less waste in warehouses from overordering. Increasing uptime Downtime of vehicles, production machinery or other equipment can have a detrimental impact on creativity and incur costs. Mobile asset tracking provides a foundation for remote maintenance and control services, which enable businesses to monitor the condition of assets and take a proactive approach to maintenance. Sensors on a tracking device can send an alert at the very first sign of a problem, so that an engineer can be scheduled. What challenges are businesses facing? IDC4 found that the top business priorities in 2014 are boosting productivity, reducing operational costs, and improving energy efficiency and sustainability. Asset tracking can help with all of these challenges and more. 4. IDC European Vertical Markets Survey, October 2013 5. http://www.petrolprices.com/the-price-of-fuel.html With an asset tracking solution you can: • Track your assets worldwide: there are various tracking devices designed for all assets, from shipping containers to industrial equipment • Gain insight into your operations to guide efficiency improvements and reduce your carbon footprint • Monitor the condition of assets to simplify preventative maintenance and improve uptime • Reduce theft and loss of both operational and supply chain assets • Improve the safety and security of goods in transit M2M Mobile Asset Tracking Asset theft and loss Theft is a major issue for many industries, and the cost can be a substantial burden on any business that manages a large portfolio of high-value assets. Construction companies, for example, operate a lot of expensive plant equipment which is susceptible to theft. A universal issue Research from insurance group Allianz Cornhill6 found that in 2012, £70 million of equipment was stolen from construction sites in the UK alone. And total costs (hiring and buying replacement equipment, loss of business, etc.) come to over £800 million a year. This is just one example of an industry suffering from asset theft, but the problem is universal and one that is likely to have an impact on the service that companies can offer their customers. The whereabouts of assets is often time-critical, and their unavailability could impact revenue or customer satisfaction. Reducing costs Asset tracking can help to improve security by enabling businesses to see the location of their assets at any given time. Increased visibility means companies can see when assets are diverted from their planned routes or removed from pre-set geo- fences. With an improved asset recovery rate, companies will benefit from less downtime and can save money on the cost of buying replacements. Having a more secure portfolio of assets also means businesses are likely to see a reduction in insurance premiums. Safety and security Haulage firms responsible for the shipping of controlled and hazardous substances, such as armaments and pharmaceuticals, or perishable goods, have additional requirements to consider. It is more critical that deliveries are made within specific timeframes, and that companies have visibility of their assets at all times. Wastage and contamination WRAP7 estimates that in the UK alone, waste costs businesses in the food and drink supply chain £5 billion a year. This is due to products not reaching their destination in time because of inefficient delivery operations, or because they have been stored at the wrong temperature, leading to spoilage. There are also concerns about contamination when goods are on the move – food provenance has becoming a hot topic for retailers, food and drink manufacturers need to know exactly what is happening at every stage of supply and production, from “field to fork”. Audit trail Data from an asset tracking solution can also be used to inform an audit trail, as the information captured can prove where an asset has been and how it has been treated. Devices are able to monitor shock, tilt and temperature variables, providing companies with provenance indicators for all of their assets. 6. http://www.constructionnational.co.uk/security/1953-plant-theft-costing-uk-construction- industry-over-p800-million-a-year 7. https://www.gov.uk/government/policies/reducing-and-managing-waste/supporting- pages/food-waste 5 Sustainability Many enterprises are looking for ways to improve sustainability, which for the most part means becoming more energy efficient and reducing carbon emissions. The same improvements in efficiency from a mobile asset tracking solution that save money also tend to reduce emissions. Organisations managing a fleet can reduce emissions through more efficient routing. Visibility of the entire fleet around the clock can help companies minimise the number of miles travelled, increase the use of congestion-free routes and improve vehicle utilisation, all of which will help to reduce fuel consumption. Tracking devices can also be used to transmit driving behaviour data. Companies can see how fast their drivers are accelerating, how hard they’re braking and whether they’re being economical with fuel usage. Companies that have been able to reduce their manufacturing processes through tightening their supply chains, are also likely to see a drop in carbon emissions. Getting more out of your existing trucks means you don’t need to spend as much money on new ones and also reduces manufacturing activity, which will help to lower emissions. A foundation for innovation As well as the immediate benefits, asset tracking can also help you transform the way that you do business. The insights you get into your business from the data collected by a tracking device can be used as a platform for growth, with the potential for innovation and new service development. For example, with the ability to see all the journeys your assets have taken over the course of a year, you can decide where to open a new delivery office, a new stock depot or warehouse. It will also give you a much clearer idea of how long certain journeys take and which routes will be quicker. There are an increasing number of retailers offering one-hour time slots, and an asset tracking solution can help you remain competitive through more accurate delivery times and by enabling your customers to track their deliveries from start to finish. Imagine you’re a manufacturer hiring out equipment to construction companies. To improve asset utilisation, a mobile tracking device with a sensor will tell you when equipment is lying idle at one site, and can be moved to another one where it is needed. The location tracker will also show you the nearest available piece of equipment, so that transport time can be kept to a minimum. Understanding where and when companies are using your products can help to drive innovation in your business. Your tracking solution can show you how products are being used and where they are failing, which can be fed into your research and development. It can help you spot market needs you may have been unaware of, and identify new customers. The data can also help shape your warranty processes, as well as your sales and marketing efforts. Giving companies the ability to track all of their mobile assets provides not only process efficiencies which hit the top and bottom line, but also helps to move them ever closer to becoming a truly connected business. Johan Fagerberg, Co-Founder and Principal Analyst, Berg Insight M2M Mobile Asset Tracking Implementation considerations There are an increasing number of options on the M2M market, but to deliver the results and ROI you need, your mobile asset tracking solution has to fit your business. The right approach As the market grows, we are seeing improved network connectivity and increasing maturity of M2M management platforms. This has led to a heightened awareness of asset tracking and of the benefits this type of solution can offer to businesses. M2M technology and its various applications are becoming increasingly widespread. As a result organisations now have access to asset tracking solutions that can offer better coverage and more insight into their business. It also means that asset tracking is more affordable for companies, and it is therefore easier to make a business case for adoption. However, there are factors to consider in any solution deployment. Cost and investment As with any technology investment, a sound business case is critical. As well as factoring in the capital and operating expenses associated with devices and network connectivity, you’ll need to get a full estimate of all the savings and other benefits you expect to see. These may be easy to forecast and to measure — for instance, the capital purchase of replacement equipment due to avoided theft, or estimated reductions in fuel consumption. Others may be less direct and require more work to measure, such as increased staff and asset utilization, reduced delay and downtime across the supply chain, or ultimately increases in customer satisfaction. But these factors can make a significant contribution to ROI. Integration Many may also have reservations because of the perceived complexity of the technology, and the difficulty of integrating it into existing supply chain applications. The question “will it cause more problems than it fixes?” is not uncommon, but most solutions have been designed to integrate into existing systems and into your existing processes via APIs. Coverage Managing an international portfolio of assets can also throw up the question of coverage – can an M2M tracking solution provide the large-scale coverage needed and will it be reliable? In the past businesses may have felt that there isn’t enough choice on the market, but the number of global solution providers is growing, It’s important to partner with a provider than can offer the coverage and technology to meet your business needs. Looking to the future There’s a blurred line between where asset tracking stops and other M2M applications start. For a large number of organisations, mobile asset tracking could just be the beginning, the foundation for a move into areas such as remote monitoring and control, fleet management, supply chain automation and connected products. Further business data analytics and business process automation could lead to a new level of customer service as well as bigger reductions in operational costs. And the beauty of M2M and working with a global M2M partner is that while you might need additional sensors for different applications, you only need to have the connectivity put in place once per asset. 7 Construction Construction equipment is often kept on building sites for the duration of a project and can be susceptible to theft. With an M2M tracking solution you can set a geo-fence for your assets so you will be alerted when a piece of equipment is moved outside of your specified boundary. Asset tracking devices can also help you follow the movements of building materials when they’re being transported between factories, warehouses and building sites. This will help you to plan deliveries more accurately, so that projects can run more efficiently. Industry applications Manufacturing Products in the manufacturing industry can be vulnerable to theft when in transit between factories, warehouses and customers — even if you use a reliable third-party logistics firm or run your own fleets in-house. Using an M2M tracking solution means your security teams can always know the exact location of materials, individual products or containers, and can be alerted if anything has been tampered with so you can investigate immediately. Defence The traceability of military components, materials and equipment is critical – you need to know where your assets are, and have been at any given time, so that you can provide an audit trail and prevent equipment from being stolen. Military budgets are under public scrutiny, and therefore operational efficiency is essential, but this is difficult when defence supply chains are constantly changing shape depending on the mission. An M2M tracking solution provides round-the-clock visibility, enabling you to reduce theft and prove where assets have been. It can help to map out more efficient routes and automate some logistics processes. Logistics Your vans and trucks keep the world’s goods moving. Whether you’re carrying pallets or parcels, the function you play is critical to consumers, companies and governments alike. But to stand out in the logistics market you need to increase delivery speed and reliability with features such as real-time shipment tracking, and same-day delivery to customers. An M2M connected tracking device can give real-time information about where each shipment is on its route from port to warehouse to customer, giving your staff instant visibility into the status of the delivery. You can also use this information to plan staffing levels and vehicle scheduling. M2M Mobile Asset Tracking Retail Being able to trace products from distribution centre to store, or to a customer’s address, means you can more accurately predict timings for deliveries – no more waiting at home all day for a product to turn up that isn’t even scheduled for delivery. With up-to-the-minute location data you can offer your customers real-time shipment tracking and same-day delivery, improving your service and giving you an advantage over your competitors. Asset tracking can also help you to reduce the risk of theft while goods are in transit, and can help with stock counting and stock replenishment. The data from asset tracking will also show you where you can streamline logistics throughout your entire supply chain, helping your business to cut costs. Public sector From residents’ wheelie bins, to lawn mowers for public parks, to equipment and vehicles used in road maintenance, as a government organisation you could have any number of assets that need to be tracked. Not only will a tracking solution help you to reduce theft of these assets, the information provided by tracking devices will enable you to prove where certain assets have been re-used, and will give you their location at any given time. Utilities Installing M2M sensors in your maintenance vehicles allows you to remotely monitor their position and status in the field, so you plan routes for your engineers more efficiently, increasing the number of appointments they can carry out in a day. Devices can also be added to parts and equipment that your workers use, so they can be monitored. You can also see whether assets have been tampered with, and can measure variables such as fuel levels, oil levels and water temperature. Healthcare As a healthcare provider, you need to keep track of your assets in the field, to reduce the risk of theft and to help you provide a more efficient standard of care. You may want to track equipment that gets sent home on loan with patients, such as wheelchairs and mobile beds, or mobile equipment that gets moved around hospitals, such as defibrillators and portable x-ray machines. Attaching tracking devices to assets enables you to easily locate them as and when they’re needed. You can also use asset tracking to protect drug deliveries and to track the location of on-call staff so that you can better plan patient care. 9 Vodafone Mobile Asset Tracking Vodafone Mobile Asset Tracking gives you complete visibility and control of any asset that’s valuable to your business. Our solution is designed to make implementation as simple and effective as possible. We offer a customised service designed to meet your needs, with full professional services at every stage, from delivery, installation and testing to ongoing 24x7 global support. Inside each of your assets we install a tracker – a wired or battery-powered wireless device that tracks their GPS location, acceleration and other factors such as temperature and level of ambient light. There are different tracking devices suited to different use cases, conditions and environments. They can be fitted at the time of manufacture, or can be retrofitted across an existing portfolio of assets through a phased rollout. The tracker is connected via 2G or 3G GSM connections to our secure global M2M network or the networks of our partners. The network carries data from the device back to the software platform. The device can be set up to send routine reports on a periodic basis, or it can send event-based triggers and alerts. This enables you to maintain a seamless overview of the physical location and status of your entire asset estate at any given time. The system can alert you in real time should an asset be stolen, tampered with or break behavioural rules that you define. For example, you can set a geo-fenced area marking a construction site where a piece of plant is operating — if it leaves the area, for whatever reason, you’ll know about it immediately. The data can be integrated via APIs into your critical business processes, such as your SCM, ERP and CRM. The Vodafone solution is offered as a managed cloud service, so it is flexible to suit your business needs. All data storage and analytics software is hosted in our resilient data centres. No matter how many assets you’re monitoring, we’ve got the scale to handle it. Our solution • The device with sensors you attach to your asset • The network that enables tracking and the transfer of data • The software platform where you can manage all your assets A simple solution Customer’s asset is fitted with the tracking device Customer Customer asset Tracking device Business logic Data storage Alarms Alarm lists Reports Maps Administration Analysis APIs Customer portal Device integration and management M2M Platform Solution offered as a managed, cloud service The device will report to a central server via the Vodafone network Backend system manages devices, and translates data into useful information Data can be integrated into customer’s critical business processes via APIs Vodafone 01101001 01010111 M2M Mobile Asset Tracking Why Vodafone? Mobile asset tracking has the potential to become a core part of the way you run your business. So partnering with a provider that has proven M2M expertise and experience in delivering solutions is vital. Deep experience transforming business with M2M We’ve got more than 20 years of experience in M2M, with the tracking of assets such as vehicles at the core of that experience. Today over 250 dedicated M2M experts put their experience to work for you: at a global level in planning international deployments, and at a local level to provide insights into regulatory requirements. No other operator can match our level of M2M expert support. Global networks you can rely on Today, Vodafone provides services via 70 wireless networks on five continents. We have the world’s largest owned network and partnerships in more than 40 countries, serving more than 400 million customers. Our global scale doesn’t just give you the confidence that we operate wherever your mobile assets travel; it also means that we can provide extremely competitive pricing and simplify your service management. Our global SIM and global SLAs ensure that you receive a consistent experience. The solutions and support you need to make M2M simple We know that building an M2M solution can be complex. We focus on making it simple. We give you a single point of contact, bringing together the right hardware, application and service providers, and ensuring they work together seamlessly with your products and equipment, and our global network. Our dedicated Innovation Park team in Dusseldorf is at your disposal throughout your project to ensure that hardware and complete solutions work perfectly. And once we’ve deployed the solution, our Global M2M Platform gives you both a single web-based and API-based automated interface for tracking the status of all your M2M devices in real time and for raising support issues and provisioning requests. Want proof of our experience? Don’t just take our word for it. We’ve been highly rated by leading industry analysts such as Analysys Mason, Current Analysis and Machina Research. Visit m2m.vodafone.com/ why_vodafone/ to find out more. Start your journey Only Vodafone Global M2M can offer you such a complete tracking solution for all your mobile assets, on a global scale. To find out more about our M2M solutions for mobile asset tracking, please contact your Vodafone account manager, email m2m@ vodafone.com, or visit m2m.vodafone.com. 11 m2m.vodafone.com Vodafone Group 2014. This document is issued by Vodafone in confidence and is not to be reproduced in whole or in part without the prior written permission of Vodafone. Vodafone and the Vodafone logos are trademarks of the Vodafone Group. Other product and company names mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners. The information contained in this publication is correct at time of going to print. Such information may be subject to change, and services may be modified supplemented or withdrawn by Vodafone without prior notice. All services are subject to terms and conditions, copies of which may be obtained on request.
More