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Location Tech Fuels Roadside Assistance, Logistics and Supply Chain Activities

In business, if “time is money” then “context” is equivalent to the currency exchange rate. In order to deliver this critical context for the roadside assistance, logistics and supply chain industries, location data is used as an essential element to streamline operations and improve the customer experience. 
In this blog post, we will delve into how location-based services support roadside assistance companies and the logistics and supply chain industries. 


Location-based Services for Roadside Assistance

In 2015, AAA (a LocationSmart customer) reportedly rescued a record-breaking 32 million drivers from breakdowns, flat tires and other challenges. Roadside assistance companies like AAA utilize location technologies for location-based call routing and to locate the whereabouts of stranded motorists. These services help improve customer experiences and streamline antiquated practices like asking mobile customers to enter a ZIP code or spending time telling an agent the nearest cross street. 

Bad customer experiences are reportedly costing businesses approximately $1.6 trillion and 72 percent of customers expect agents to know their service history and contact information once a call is placed. After a stranded motorist places a call for help, the roadside assistance company can automatically pinpoint their location using their mobile device. This location data may be used to route the call to a local affiliate and then the agent can dispatch a service provider who is closest to the stranded motorist. Many roadside assistance companies also provide the option for motorists to receive ETA updates via text message from the responding service provider. Some even allow motorists to view a map for tracking the location of the service provider. 

With location-based services, roadside assistance companies are able to efficiently field calls, route them appropriately, assign service providers and report contextually relevant updates to all parties. Roadside assistance companies are able to respond faster, process a higher number of calls and provide better service so customers know who to count on in their time of need. 

What location technologies are used? 

Several of the most common technologies used for operational efficiencies in roadside assistance include carrier network location, messaging and device-based location if using a mobile app. Learn more.

Location-based Services for Logistics and Supply Chain

Approaches to inventory management are constantly challenged and the concepts of just-in-time and just-in-sequence have gained popularity due to advancements in mobile and connected technologies. Excess inventory can be incredibly costly so logistics professionals and supply chain practitioners embrace location-based services to apply these lean concepts to remain competitive. Both approaches employ tactics to increase efficiency and eliminate waste by ensuring goods are received only as they are needed. An added emphasis on speed and accountability forces businesses to thread the needle so supply meets demand and their employees are pushed to perform consistently with a smaller margin of error. 

Location-based services help bridge these gaps by providing enhanced visibility for remote monitoring of workers and assets. These services also deliver data-rich insights into performance and businesses have an additional layer of contextually relevant information for reporting and compliance. 

In an asset tracking use case, location-based services allow logistics professionals and supply chain practitioners to act and react based on real-time location intelligence. Location data can influence a variety of core functions throughout the transit lifecycle. For example, if a shipment is delayed due to inclement weather then a logistics intermediary can actively monitor the shipment’s location and ETA. With this information, the logistics intermediary can re-route other shipments away from that storm to another warehouse and report status updates along the way. These changes impact staffing assignments to accommodate new loads, customers receive real-time notifications on ETAs and additional data can be used to evaluate short and long-term costs. 

Logistics professionals and supply chain practitioners who use location-based services are able to track assets and workers in real-time, they can streamline internal processes and improve bottom lines. 

What location technologies are used?

GPS is one of the most common location technologies used to track assets but the signal is not always available. It can be unavailable when in a warehouse or blocked when a physical obstruction is overhead so a multi-layered location technology approach is best. GPS, carrier network location and Global Site ID (GSID) are among the most popular location technologies for the logistics and supply chain industries. Learn more.