For many, “December” conjures up visions of the holidays – the joys of family and friends, the scent of cookies, the warmth of eggnog. And it feels so far away.
Fleet managers overseeing fleets that are still using AOBRD devices, however, should be feeling the opposite: December will be coming quickly, and with it the end of the ELD exception that allows for continued AOBRD usage. And prudent fleet managers will know that the time to start getting ELD into place is now – and not at the last minute.
Why switch now? Going directly to the bottom line, it makes a lot of financial sense to switch to ELD sooner, rather than later. But aside from the ROI of moving from AOBRD to ELD, there are several strong reasons for fleet managers to make the move well ahead of the December sunset date – and all of those reasons revolve around time, as the clock keeps ticking down. Here are three time-based reasons why you should plan your switch from AOBRD to ELD soon.
1. ELD Installation Takes Time
The first hurdle that fleet managers will have to overcome in switching from AOBRD to ELD is the installation of the ELDs themselves. For smaller fleets, that might mean overseeing the installation of tens of devices – but for managers of larger fleets, that might mean the installation of hundreds or even thousands of ELDs. Because device installation means physical labor, there’s a discrete amount of time that each device installation is going to take, and along with that comes the planning and management of rotating trucks in and out of service as this work is done.
2. You Need Time to Sort Out Existing AOBRD Contracts
Secondly, fleets with a large amount of AOBRD installations are also likely to have a large contract (or contracts) tied to those AOBRDs. Fleet managers and executives will need time to examine those contracts – as well as plan for any contractually-obligated time windows for notices of termination. This is especially important for contracts with AOBRD providers who cannot – or are unwilling to – provide ELD services once the sunset date occurs, but with whom there’s no clear-cut exit date. In such cases, fleet managers who have waited too long to make the switch to an ELD provider may find themselves making double payments for some period of time: One to their ELD provider, as well as to an AOBRD provider who is no longer actually rendering a service.
3. Drivers Will Need ELD Training Time
Lastly, fleet managers will need to leave an appropriate amount of time to ensure that their drivers are all properly trained on how to use their ELDs. AOBRDs and ELDs come with functional differences that require driver training – and as we’ve pointed out before, it’s well past the time when enforcement officials were willing to accept “I’m new to this” as drivers struggled to figure out how to work their ELDs. Drivers that understand how their ELDs work, and can (and do!) use them appropriately, will keep themselves out of hot water with enforcement officials. But understanding and using their ELDs does take training, and thus it’s important that fleet managers build in the time for that training as they’re making plans to switch their fleets from AOBRD to ELD.
How Long Does It Take to Switch from AOBRD to ELD?
So, how much time is enough time? The answer, as with many things, is “it depends.” In particular, it depends on fleet size; as we’ve mentioned, the number of ELDs that need to be installed and the number of drivers that will need to be trained will vary from fleet to fleet. In general, though, 90 days out from the sunset date is the latest that fleets should begin the actual switchover – and that means that planning and getting all of the pieces into place for the switchover needs to happen well before that date. That leaves time for dealing with unforeseen circumstances that might occur, and also lets fleets capitalize sooner on the financial benefits of switching to ELD.
The clock, as they say, is ticking.
At CyntrX, we have years of experience in providing ELD solutions to local and national fleets of all sizes. If you’re a fleet manager and need to make the switch from AOBRD to ELD, we can help. We’ll be happy to talk with you about your fleet and your particular needs, and give you a free demo of our ELD Pro platform and solution.
Want more? We’re so sure that we can meet your needs that we don’t require a contract – so why wait? Request your ELD Pro demo and find out how you can get on the road to compliance and ROI sooner rather than later.