“Speedy transition to the most reliable 4G trailer telematics platform accelerates ROI.”
In 2020, Swift Transportation started the process of replacing more than 20,000 soon-to-be outdated trailer tracking units for dry van trailers. Management had less than two years to evaluate, test and install a 4G-enabled telematics platform before the 3G shutdown.
A rigorous evaluation led management to choose the SkyBitz Falcon GXT5002C asset tracking solution with integrated cargo sensor. The SkyBitz platform stood out for being the most capable and affordable solution in the market.
Swift initially used the SkyBitz system on 510 trailers to test the accuracy and speed of its locating and cargo sensing technology.
“We involved all different departments to ensure everyone got what they needed, and we also looked at price,” said Miki Menzildzic, director of shop telematics at Swift Transportation.
SkyBitz worked closely with Swift to deliver and install the trailer tracking solution and integrated cargo sensors on every trailer before the 3G shutdown. Menzildzic credits the excellent communication and project management of SkyBitz for completing the job on schedule despite COVID-19 restrictions and supply chain disruptions.
After the successful rollout, Swift began installing SkyBitz on all new trailer builds and currently has around 30,000 units deployed.
“Excellent communication and project management of SkyBitz for completing the job on schedule despite COVID-19 restrictions and supply chain disruptions” Miki Menzildzic said.
“As much as it’s about the product itself, it’s also the people behind the product. My experience with SkyBitz has been really good.”
For Swift, the benefits of using the SkyBitz platform to manage nearly 30,000 trailers can be summarized as:
- Easy installation: The self-contained, solar-powered SkyBitz device eliminates the need to run wires to the trailer’s 7-way connector, which previously created maintenance issues with trailer tracking systems.
- Improved reliability: The company has a 93% working rate for units fleetwide and SkyBitz promptly replaces units in need of maintenance. “I’d like to have a 100% working fleet, but in reality that’s impossible,” he says. Prior to using SkyBitz, Swift’s percentage of non-working trailer tracking units was between 25% and 35%.
- Increased revenue: The accuracy and reliability of the SkyBitz solution increased Swift’s detention billing ability. This nearly paid for the system and revenue also increased from tracking and billing fleets for mileage who share the same customers with Swift and use its trailers.
- Higher driver productivity: Instead of sending drivers around yards looking for empty trailers, Swift gives them precise locations of available units to eliminate wasted time, miles and fuel.
- Fast maintenance: Menzildzic uses weekly exception reports from SkyBitz to locate any units that are not working. The numbers are minimal, but the alerts are loaded into Swift’s fleet maintenance software to give shop supervisors pop-up reminders to replace non-working units when they arrive at Swift locations.
To carriers looking to install or upgrade a trailer tracking solution, Menzildzic offers a piece of advice: “As much as it’s about the product itself, it’s also the people behind the product. My experience with SkyBitz has been really good”.