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ELD Implementation: Lessons Learned From a Carrier Perspective

ELD Implementation: Lessons Learned From a Carrier Perspective | The Road

As December 18 draws closer, many carriers are currently facing important decisions about electronic logging devices (ELDs) in order to comply with the federal mandate. My company, Transport America, was at the same point four years ago.

With over 1,000 trucks in our fleet and even more drivers to get up to speed, it was a slow process initially and certainly a learning experience. But the electronic logs have become an integral part of our business, and we have found the technology comes with many advantages as well.

Lessons learned after ELD implementation

Lessons learned after ELD implementation | The Road

Initial concerns were soon dissolved.
It’s human nature to be wary of the unknown. Initially, our team had a fair amount of anxiety about switching to electronic logs: How will it impact productivity? Will drivers still be able to make a living? What if I’m five miles from home and I reach my hours of service maximum? But as it turned out, a lot of those fears were unfounded. We did see a slight dip in productivity when we first implemented the devices, but have since regained most of it through some operational adjustments.

Drivers quickly saw the upside.
We implemented ELDs slowly at Transport America. Once a few drivers agreed to try them, they quickly realized how easy the technology was to use and, in some cases, they actually got more time back. For instance, with paper logs, there is a 15-minute minimum for stops. But maybe you’re only stopped for five or six minutes—the electronic logs record that time accurately, and it can add up.

Once we had the devices available and the team started to understand how it all worked and what the ELDs could do for them, more and more of them were eager to implement in their trucks. In fact, when we went out to talk with drivers a month later, we asked what they would say if we told them we are going back to paper logs. The overwhelming sentiment was that they could never go back to paper—our drivers say the ELDs are easier, save them a lot of time and headaches trying to maintain accurate log info, and take the potential for human error out of the equation completely.

Overall business can benefit, too.
Our day-to-day operations continue to evolve since we implemented electronic logging devices. We have found it useful for both our fleet managers and planners to have access to data that allows them to see the complete picture for each truckload and each truck’s activity.

In some cases, the data has actually helped us understand where we can improve productivity. For example, we identified transit times and delivery expectations that were unrealistic given regulatory limitations. We were able to use the electronic logs to have productive conversations with customers, because the data shows that in order to move freight legally, changes needed to be made.

As an industry, we have some work to do to find ways to make freight pickups and deliveries more efficient. ELD data is just one tool to help identify opportunities to improve and create those efficiencies to make us better.

Don’t wait until December to implement

Don’t wait until December to implement | The Road

The best advice I can offer is if you haven’t implemented electronic logging devices yet, start exploring your options now. There are a lot of choices out there, and it could take some time to determine which is the best one for your business.

Some products might not be available at the last minute, especially if you have a large fleet to equip. Perhaps most importantly, don’t underestimate the amount of training required to get drivers and employees comfortable with the technology. It could take three months or more to install the hardware, educate drivers and staff, and ensure they know how to use the ELDs properly.

I would also recommend involving your drivers in developing the training—they understand the different situations and circumstances they may encounter and will need to address on the road better than anyone. You can’t over train when it comes to electronic logs. Bottom line: If you wait until December to start, you’re going to be too late.

- Retired, Transportation Executive

Comments

Belkys Rodriguez

Don't think is good we try for a week and it was hell with that ELD 🤐😔☹😖

9.20.17

Reply

Roger Oliver

The logic used in this article is ridiculous,
the driver has no flexibility with the ELD. Once the truck is started and rolling the driver needs flexibility in today's driving environment .
More flexibility is the answer not less and when is the driver ever stopped for five or six minutes in the example he uses , The driver knows best when to proceed and when to stop to rest, avoid rush hour traffic, etc.

9.20.17

Reply

    Carole Scruggs

    Amen
    Eld's are the answer for companies to train the truck because they can't train the driver

    12.6.17

STEVE FJERSTAD

WHAT DID YOU DO WITH THE GUY THAT WAS 5 MILES FROM HOME AND RAN OUT OF HOURS?
HOW ABOUT IF YOU HAVE A LOAD OF FEED FOR A FARMERS CATTLE AND THEY CAN'T BE FED BECAUSE YOU'RE OUT OF TIME? OR THE FARMER THAT NEEDS HIS SEED, FERTILIZER OR CHEMICALS AND HAS TO SHUT DOWN BECAUSE THE DRIVER DOESN'T HAVE TIME AND IT IS SUPPOSED TO RAIN.
HOW ABOUT THE GUY THAT GETS HELD UP IN TRAFFIC IN MPLS AND CAN'T GET TO THE ELEVATOR IN TIME ON FRIDAY CAUSE HE IS OUT OF TIME, AND NEEDS TO GET HOME FOR FAMILY DOINGS?

9.20.17

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    C.H. Robinson

    In order to more effectively avoid situations like this, ELDs will force both professional truck drivers as well as trucking companies to become a lot better at planning than we are today. We can't leave our drivers in a situation where they are 5 miles from home.

    -Keith Klein

    9.25.17

    brian

    from a customer perspective and coming from someone who works in logistics on the customer side, we love them. Less chance for inaccurate information and better control over our customers products.

    12.8.17

davi

no to eld's more than likely i'll get off the road

9.20.17

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    Mark

    And brokers. Scheduling picks in the late afternoon/early evening and expecting 1000 miles by second morning will have to come to a stop. This is the action that kills drivers young and endangers the driving public.

    12.6.17

    Peter Robu

    Keith Klein,I read your sarcasm but plz tell me how to plan better ahead when i get stuck in traffic or can't find parking ? Too bad that we truckers allow people that never drove a truck to make rules that look good on paper but in real life will put the public in danger.I think from now on more drivers will be diagnosed with sleep apnea disorder because of sleep time variations, also drivers will be forced to spend more time on the road ,away from their families, can you imagine that you have to take a 34 hrs break ,2 hrs away from home? under eld mandate you must or face big fines. Take it from a professional truck driver of 30 yrs with now accidents at fault and as a father of 5 I value life too much to keep driving for much longer after this eld fiasco, and while the big trucking companies celebrate the little guy exit get ready to pay more for everything you buy because they will charge a lot more for shipping.

    12.9.17

sarah

we are the small fleet. do you know where I can find a good ELD for us?

9.20.17

Reply

    C.H. Robinson

    Hi Sarah,

    How many trucks do you have? For 1-10 truck fleets, this option could be a good fit: http://one20.com/chr/

    Thank you,
    C.H. Robinson Social

    9.21.17

    Steve Campbell

    I highly suggest avoiding the Rand McNally System. We have been trying to use their system for over a year. Way too many technical issues and loos of signal issues.

    10.18.17

    Silvana

    https://www.hos-reporter.com/

    This is a very good price, and also they have app for Android and Apple...

    12.6.17

    Scott McGlasson

    We (30-40 tractor fleet) have been using Samsara. I believe the reason we settled on them was that they offered a few dozen free Android-based tablets for the drivers to carry with them in the cab.

    I can certainly see the potential upsides, but given that 1) our company management did not provide an effective training period, and 2) the quality of the free tablets is somewhat...crappy, the experience reported by our drivers is almost universally negative.

    A mandatory ELD system requires robust hardware and adequate training in its use.

    12.14.17

    MONSTER

    NONE OF THEM WORK FOR POOP! STAY AWAY FROM EZ-ELD THAT ONE NEVER WORKED RIGHT. KEPT JUMP AROUND FROM ON-DUTY TO DRIVING WHEN SITTING STILL AND WHEN DRIVING JUMPED TO OFF DUTY? JUST BOUGHT JJ KELLER DIDNT GET TO HOOK UP IN THE TRUCK HAD TO DO REPAIR ON THE TRUCK COULD LEAVE THEN WOULDNT HAVE ENOUGH TIME FOR LOAD.
    PLEASE PLEASE DO YOUR RESEARCH READ THE REVIEWS DO NOT LISTEN TO JUST ANYONE ! MUST RESEARCH! ITS ALL BS! GOOD LUCK! BUY A OLDER TRUCK!

    12.18.17

Roger C

If you make a 6 minute stop why would you paper log it?? What about the guy 5 minute from home and runs out of time??? Can I unplug it and go home?

9.20.17

Reply

John nokk

Less money away from home more. Change the pay to hourly .say $100 to $140 for oo's and $30 for drivers.plus 8 hours minum pay for every 10 hours layovers
.how many hours a week are drivers working for free.at the dock ,in traffic, getting repaired ECT. Start the eld start the pay

9.23.17

Reply

    Carole Scruggs

    Go ahead and raise the pay, good luck when you go to purchase anything
    Drivers more than anyone else know where every purchase originates so do you think you won't pay for it In the long run

    12.6.17

Dmitriy

There isn't place to park overnight at all any more. It can't accept another 1 million trucks to park at the same time-this is a major problem with ELD mandatory as I think. I experienced 20 years as OTR driver and definitely I will quit

9.27.17

Reply

ELVIN

Everything in life is about "Adjusting and Satisfaction"
I can get adjusted to ELD but I will never be satisfy if have to pay for something that is being forced into the industry by the authorities and WE have to pay for it.
How about a TAX BREAK at the end of every year for having this devices install in our trucks.
With only one truck and all the regulations that are already in place, I can never think about getting more trucks and becoming a small fleet, it would get me bankrupt. I don't make enough the way we are right now and on top of it I HAVE TO PAY FOR SOMETHING THAT IS NOT GOING TO HELP ME!!!

10.11.17

Reply

    Richard Morgan

    YES WHERE WILL WE GO WHEN THERE IS NOT A PLACE TO PARK SAFELY NEBRASKA HAS A LOT OF ACRES TO PARK BUT THERE CLOSED TO TRUCKS ALSO ARIZONA HAS CLOSED MOST OF THERE REST AREAS THEN CALIFORNIA THERES A MESS

    12.6.17

    MONSTER

    NONE OF THEM WORK FOR POOP! STAY AWAY FROM EZ-ELD THAT ONE NEVER WORKED RIGHT. KEPT JUMP AROUND FROM ON-DUTY TO DRIVING WHEN SITTING STILL AND WHEN DRIVING JUMPED TO OFF DUTY? JUST BOUGHT JJ KELLER DIDNT GET TO HOOK UP IN THE TRUCK HAD TO DO REPAIR ON THE TRUCK COULD LEAVE THEN WOULDNT HAVE ENOUGH TIME FOR LOAD.
    PLEASE PLEASE DO YOUR RESEARCH READ THE REVIEWS DO NOT LISTEN TO JUST ANYONE ! MUST RESEARCH! ITS ALL BS! GOOD LUCK! BUY A OLDER TRUCK!

    12.18.17

tommy windsor

do what my company does when a driver is within 150 miles of home and runs out of hours. we send a driver in a commericial vehicle to bring them home. the driver signs out of his truck and comes home in the other vehicle. the driver with hours drives the truck to the yard

12.6.17

Reply

Paula

ELD's work fine for BIG companies who strictly haul truckloads. It is not good for the small companies that are hauling LTL. The drivers will not be able to work the hours needed to get loaded and unloaded. Therefore, their pay drops and our prices go up!!! This is just horrible!!!!!

12.6.17

Reply

Loren

I dispatch for a company and we have been on ELD for about 4 years. Drivers absolutely love it!! If we don't get systems in new trucks right away they complain! It is all about the planning.

12.6.17

Reply

Bobby

Its just another money grab and move towards Dictatorshi. They want to tell when we have to do everything and taking out the Common sense the world needs. Its one more step the wrong way, they have all the DOTs on the road make the do there job, with Safeties every 6 months in some places to year, soon to be changed, another government grab, we have DOTs use them and let small business go to work and make the country good again!

12.6.17

Reply

Adam

Rather increasing expance for Bussiness, driver rate should be increased, I personally feel there are way more hackers will come in affect to see Bussiness profit and loss, hacker can shutdown truck where they would want too. Totally unhealthy decision.

12.6.17

Reply

Mark

It's will hurts C.H.Robinson as well. Kills all apointments scheduling and make some routing unrealistic.

12.6.17

Reply

Dan

ELD= earn less dollars

In my years of experience. when I rush I was at greater risk

12.6.17

Reply

DOUG

TRANSPORT AMERICA OPERATES 1000 TRUCKS, IF THEY MAKE $150.00 PER DAY WITH EACH ONE THEY'RE ABLE TO MAKE SURVIVE. I OWN 3 TRUCKS IF I MAKE $450.00 PER DAY IM DONE. THE MAJORITY OF THERE FREIGHT IS DROP AND HOOK. I HAVE TO LIVE LOAD. ( IM SURE LARGE TRUCKING COMPANIES KNEW TO CHANGE THE OLD RULE OF SPLIT SLEEPER OR OFF DUTY TIME BEFORE THEY PUSHED FOR ELD'S FOR EVERYONE.) AND I CAN BE TIED UP AT A SHIPPER OR RECEIVER FOR HOURS BEFORE I GET LOADED. I DONT HAVE A CITY TRUCK RUNNING AROUND CHICAGO PRE LOADING AND UNLOADING TRAILERS. I KNOW WHEN IM TIRED THROUGH THE DAY AND NEED TO TAKE A REST. ELD'S DONT ALLOW ME TO DO THAT BECAUSE IT MAY CHANGE THE FACT THAT I CAN GET UNLOADED THE NEXT DAY OR IT MAY PUSH ME INTO ANOTHER DAY. NOT TO MENTION PEEK TRAFFIC TIMES IN LARGE CITY'S, WHEN I COULD STOP TO AVOID SUCH THINGS AS SITTING IN TRAFFIC FOR HOURS I COULD BE TAKING A BREAK. THE LIST GO'S ON AND ON. IM A 30 YEAR VATREN DRIVER - OWNER 3RD GENERATION TRUCKER WITH NO MAJOR ACCIDENTS. AND THE ELD'S ARE FOR LARGE COMPIANES TRYING TO PUSH SMALL COMPANIES OUT. BECAUSE THEY WISH TO CONTROL THE MARKET. AND IF THEY DO. LOOK OUT.

12.6.17

Reply

Romulus

I am a small Carrier that don’t see and don’t need the benefits of ELD. I also like to be flexible in the way I work during the day. I don’t drive during rush hours and I like to take a nape during the day so that I can drive later in the night. ELD will not let me do that. I also believe that if you want to control us to the max then pay us to the max. And yes pay and maintain your ELD’s not make me pay for them.

Finally ELD will make drivers drive faster and unsafe to meet requirements. I like to drive 90 km/h all time. That is the speed all truck should drive at. Better for safety , fuel, tires, truck usage , and you can go extra hours not been tired at the end of the day.

If you can get ELD to let me do that then yes I am all for it.

12.6.17

Reply

Leon

Once again a large company that has the ability to trans load or pass the load onto anther driver. So if he has 10% out of hours for the day, he still has 900 trucking running. I have three trucks. That equates to 33% or more of my business sitting along side the road waiting to reset. Now I can't make my delivery times, having to reschedule, lost pay due to delays in loading/unloading. I love these big guys. Their heads are so far in the clouds, they are either clueless, or would like nothing more than to see us go out of business. The whole ELD idea stinks!!

12.6.17

Reply

Samuel Ndungu

Adjustment needed for ELD to work.
1.less time at the shipper. We cannot afford layover of more than 2 hours at the shipper and the receiver
2. Brokers have to pay reasonable amount to the carriers for then to book the loads in advance. Currently they wait until the loads are almost late for pickup for them to pay reasonable amount.
3. Brokers should prepay for pumper fee. Currently, we waste allot of time waiting for the payment checks.
4.reasonable pay for layover and detention.
5.Brokers should communicate correct information to carriers.

12.6.17

Reply

Emilio Zetino

I qiuit

12.6.17

Reply

A_T_Great

How do you plan for a 5 hr wait at the shipper? If your 14 hrs are up and the shipper is kicking you off, what are your supposed to do?

12.6.17

Reply

Richard Morgan

ELD,S ARE CREATED TO INCREASE WAGES FOR THE GOVERMENT NOT FOR HARD WORKING AMERICANS, WE NEED TO GO ON STRIKE AND CHANGE A LOT OF ISSUES OUT HERE WE ARE RISKING OUR LIVES HOME FAMILY TIME AND SERVING OUR COUNTRY AND WE ARE THE LEAST APPRECIATED MEN AND WOMEN WORKING FOR PENNIES THEN THE DOT WANTS TO TAKE IT AWAY FOR WHAT THEY FEEL THEY THINK. GOD BE WITH US ALL AMEN.

12.6.17

Reply

Ruperto Hernandez

I have only one truck,running more local load, I need the ELD?

12.7.17

Reply

Maidy

Hi, I have a truck of 99 I have to buy ELD mandatory?

12.14.17

Reply

Frontier Carrier LLC

ELD GPS

1.11.18

Reply

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