SA trucking industry must embrace digitisation - or lose out

Hein Jordt, MD of Ctrack South Africa.

A new era has dawned in South Africa where digitisation is rapidly transforming the trucking industry, and it is a business imperative to start embracing this concept as soon as possible - or fleet owners will not be able to compete in the near future.

This was one of the key messages that was delivered at the fourth annual TruckX and FleetX conference and expo, which concluded yesterday (Thursday) at the Kyalami Grand Prix Circuit in Midrand.

Executive head of IoT Solutions at Vodacom SA, Tony Smallwood, said that digitisation would spread across all industries soon.

“Competitiveness will have a direct correlation to digitisation, and traditional industries will need to transform to compete in 2020. Data, platforms and innovation will disrupt the norm. The Uber, AirBNB and Kindle of the trucking industry will happen, and you need to be in a position to either be the change agent or be ready to adapt,” he said.

Morne Janse van Rensburg, CEO of VSc Solutions, added that trucks had already become a mobile node in the Internet of Things (Iot), with trucking companies and drivers benefiting from IoT logistics data that was now available to them from mobile devices in the cab. “Drivers can use linked devices to help them do their jobs faster and safer. Think mobile apps for task management, training on the go, and trend reporting to business intelligence dashboards,” he said.

Hein Jordt, MD of Ctrack South Africa, agreed that the fast development in technology was increasingly changing the way fleet owners did business. “Among this is automating business processes for improved quality and lower costs, applying analytics to the entire logistics value chain, and optimising how systems, assets and people integrate to work together.”

He added that fleet owners should embrace the advancements in telematics technology in order to be fully prepared when the wave of digitisation fully hits. 

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