The report reveals how global leaders maneuver through economic and geo-political volatility.  -  Photo: Work Truck

The report reveals how global leaders maneuver through economic and geo-political volatility.

Photo: Work Truck

Several technological breakthroughs are unfolding in the work truck industry, encompassing self-driving cars, renewable fuel, robotics, and more.

What implications will these advancements have on the future of the industry? When faced with pressure, fleets don't shy away from change but embrace it.

Samsara released the 2023 State of Connected Operations Report. It analyzed 1,500 operations leaders worldwide and dives into how today's leaders maneuver through economic and geo-political volatility.

Reimaging a Fleet’s Operations With Technology            

Equipping a work truck fleet with up-to-date technology brings many advantages to today's industry.

By embracing tech, fleets can streamline operations, enhance productivity, and achieve significant cost savings.

Regarding the digital maturity rate of leaders’ organization’s physical operations, 47% reported beginner, 45% said they were advanced, and only 8% reported a high level of digital maturity.

So is it worth adding telematics and management software to your fleet?

The data speaks for itself; the leaders who reported resulted in higher employee productivity (64%), higher revenue (59%), and increased net profit (56%).

As we enter 2023, 56% of leaders emphasize enhancing workforce productivity by adopting new technologies as an essential organizational priority.

There is still time for fleets who haven’t taken advantage of tech yet. But it would be best if you started planning for it now.

Of the 1,500 leaders, 84% plan to use generative AI, and 91% will leverage automation to modernize their operations by 2024.

Investing in Data to Get Ahead

One thing almost every leader agreed on (90%) was that data is a competitive advantage for their organization.

Real-time operational data for fleets involves collecting, analyzing, and using up-to-the-minute information regarding fleet operations.

It involves gathering real-time data from vehicles, drivers, and other relevant sources and processing it to provide actionable insights.

And fleets are increasing their tech budget to take advantage of it. According to the report, 90% of leaders say having accurate, real-time operational data is critical to decision-making in 2023.

Plus, leaders report widespread benefits because of their data technology investments:

  • Increased safety (50%).
  • Improved compliance (50%).
  • Higher revenue (43%).
  • Increased net profit (43%).

Using AI to Modernize Operations

The survey reported that adopting artificial intelligence (AI) has significantly impacted operations this year.

According to the report, 31% of leaders and 47% of digitally mature leaders use generative AI to modernize their operations.

Looking ahead, 84% of leaders have plans to incorporate generative AI into their processes by 2024, with only a mere 5% expressing no intention to adopt this technology.

As generative AI advances and finds diverse real-world applications, it will unlock boundless possibilities for physical operations in the coming years.

These possibilities include automating:

  • Driving tasks.
  • Predicting consumer demands.
  • Streamlining daily operations.

To fully leverage AI's potential and overcome information overload challenges, Samsara stated that leaders will need to focus on solutions that harness the power of AI to enhance existing processes and tackle new problems.

Particularly for physical operations, AI can efficiently organize and analyze massive volumes of data from various sources, such as sites, vehicles, assets, and employees in the work truck industry.

On top of discussing leveraging technology, the leaders were also surveyed on their top three challenges this year.

Results from the 2023 State of Connected Operations Report.  -  Photo: Samsara

Results from the 2023 State of Connected Operations Report.

Photo: Samsara

Top Strategies to Combat Supply Chain Shortages

The top three concerns the leaders face globally are:

  1. Supply chain delays.
  2. Volatile fuel prices.
  3. Cross-border travel/trade.

Leaders remain deeply concerned about the persistent supply chain delays and shortages three years after the pandemic triggered worldwide disruptions.

Recognizing the limitations of minor adjustments, leaders have shifted their focus toward fundamentally rebuilding their supply chains.

So how are these leaders combating their most significant challenge? Of the surveyed, 95% plan to implement at least one of these strategies this year to combat supply chain shortages:

  • Onshoring — transferring an overseas business operation back to its country of origin.
  • Nearshoring — transferring an overseas business operation to another nearby country.
  • Friendshoring — transferring an overseas business operation to countries that are political or economic allies.

Clean Fuel Becomes the Norm

This year, reducing emissions is a high priority for leaders.

Top strategies for achieving this goal include:

  • Adopting EVs through purchasing or leasing.
  • Driver training programs to reduce fuel usage and idling.
  • Optimizing routing to minimize the number of miles driven.

What excites leaders about decarbonization initiatives? They point to two primary factors:

  1. Meeting customer and/or partner expectations.
  2. Increasing competitiveness.

These motivations reflect how market pressures are driving the shift toward sustainability.

Government Regulations on Decarbonization

Governments worldwide are tightening regulations on businesses that fail to prioritize sustainability. Among the digitally mature leaders, 51% acknowledge that regulatory requirements serve as a primary motivation for their efforts to reduce emissions.

Pursuing government sustainability grants has garnered significant interest across countries, with Mexico leading the way. A remarkable 60% of leaders in Mexico plan to actively seek these grants within the next two years.

Globally, 62% of the digitally mature leaders have similar intentions, compared to 50% of those still in the early stages of their sustainability journey.

About the author
Hillary Weiss

Hillary Weiss

Senior Editor

Hillary Weiss is a former senior editor at Bobit. She has a decade of digital publishing experience and a passion for all things related to fleets.

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