The Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate’s “hard enforcement” date of April 1, 2018, has come and gone. Now that some time has passed, let’s take a look at the state of compliance over the trucking and shipping industry as well as how ELD has impacted operations.
As predicted, beginning includes rocky terrain
As it was predicted by many leading up to the ELD deadline, the compliance mandate has impacted both productivity and costs since going into full effect. For example, “according to a DAT Trendlines report, truck capacity fell 2.7% the first week of April when compared to the last week in March. In addition, truck capacity dropped 7% year-over-year.”1 Also impacting productivity has been an ongoing driver shortage: “A survey of 645 truckers conducted by DAT in March found that 3% were likely to stop driving rather than agree to be digitally monitored.”1
Similar indicators were reflected in a Zipline Logistics survey of 100+ trucking companies, which noted that, in the wake of ELD, “morale is dropping, productivity is slowing and rates are rising (resulting primarily from drivers demanding higher wages due to reduced hours), but safety is improving.”2 Specifically:
- 83% of companies said productivity is down while 71% said rates are up.2
- 95% of drivers are struggling to deliver loads on time.2
- “Smaller fleets are more interested in shorter hauls than longer hauls, while the opposite is true for larger fleets.”2
Bumps in the road don’t negate ELD benefits
With any industry-wide change of this magnitude, significant issues at the onset are to be expected. But despite these challenges, the new ELD compliance mandate has proved effective. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), “ELDs are working—hours of service violations have dropped significantly.”3 In addition:
- Since the ELD mandate went fully into effect, less than 1% of all driver inspections have resulted in the driver being cited for operating without a required ELD.4
- And “only 0.64% of driver inspections in May had at least one HOS violation. Compared to year-over-year from May 2017, that’s an improvement from 1.31%.”4
Even fleet managers and trucking companies are starting to come around. According to the results of a recent Coretex post ELD-mandate survey of 300+ trucking companies, fleet owners are beginning to recognize the benefits of ELDs and the many features they can take advantage of, although they still struggle to use ELDs to their fullest potential. Specifically, the survey found:
- 47% of companies think that, yes, the ELD mandate is good for the transportation industry.5
- 51% indicate their CSA score has improved after becoming ELD-compliant.5
- Some improvements may be slower in coming: “Most carriers do not take full advantage of the data their ELDs collect, failing to leverage the data to improve driver behaviors or hold shippers accountable.”5
- The most important factors influencing the decision to choose a specific ELD product are:
- User-friendliness (29%)
- Cost (28%)
- Customer service (10%)
- Real-time tracking (9%)5
- The most popular ELD features are real-time tracking, ease of use, and reporting capabilities (conversely, the most troublesome aspects are inaccurate date, connectivity issues and technical support).5
ELD solutions can smooth rocky cost and productivity terrain
Post-ELD implementation, two of the top issues for fleets and fleet managers have been productivity and revenue losses. Investing in the right ELD solution, however, can actually help to offset both.
- Know how much driving time is left:Seeing how much driving time drivers have left in their day allows you to assign drivers appropriately.
- Use your drivers more productively:Having the right ELD solution in place allows you to plan a driver’s day more efficiently by knowing how many customers can be serviced in each driver’s allotted driving time.
- See where money is going:Monitoring avoidable expenses like Hours of Service (HOS) violations, unnecessary vehicle maintenance and safety-related fines can help you encourage drivers to operate safely and efficiently, saving you those extra dollars.
ELDs help improve productivity by:
- Accurately monitor driver status and hours: Easily see how much time drivers have left in their day as well as whether they are on duty, driving or off duty, so you better assign loads and deliveries.
- Reduce paperwork and manual processes: Access electronic logs stored in the Cloud, eliminating the need for paper logs that run the risk of being incomplete, lost or never submitted.
- Save time on reporting: Quickly run summarized, actionable reports on driver logs, HOS violations, vehicle inspections and unassigned miles with just a few clicks, saving time vs. manual spreadsheets and enabling quicker, more accurate decision-making.
To get the most out of your ELD solution learn what the enforcement period means for your fleet, join us October 3, for our webinar "Life After ELD."