It’s Monday morning and a team of fleet executives in a conference room are asking a device questions and getting instant answers. Logging into multiple systems and combing through reports is a relic of the past.
“Alexa, open Ivi. How many total miles did we bill last week?”
“Alexa, open Ivi. What were my accident costs last week?”
Using a third-party app called Ivi (pronounced “Ivy”) — a skill developed for Amazon Alexa by Omnitracs — managers at P&S Transportation are able to ask any Alexa-enabled devices and mobile Alexa apps questions about their business.
A Data and Analytics team at Omnitracs, which provides fleet management systems for transportation and logistics companies, developed the private Alexa skill called Ivi Fleet Manager for P&S Transportation, a flatbed carrier based in Birmingham, Ala.
With the new voice-assisted analytics built by Omnitracs, executives at P&S Transportation are able to access business insights at work, at home and on any Alexa-enabled device. Once an approved administrator enables the skill, the user says, “Alexa, open Ivy.”
“We are constantly looking for better ways to deliver information to our users,” said Mauricio Paredes, vice president of technology at P&S Transportation. “We are excited that the same Omnitracs analytics team that built our driver retention model helped us create a new delivery method for our management to review key performance metrics.”
Currently, Ivi is connected through web services to more than a dozen key metrics from P&S Transportation’s management system by McLeod Software. The Ivi skill could also connect to data in any on-premise our cloud-based system through web services, says Ramprasad Renganathan, a data scientist at Omnitracs.
This is one of several voice-directed solutions that are finding their way into transportation.
Earlier this year, Penske outfitted all of its technicians with headsets to interact with “Pace,” a digital assistant that guides them through preventive maintenance (PM) inspections.
In April, XPO launched a voice-enabled tracking feature that integrates directly with Google Assistant and Amazon’s Alexa. Consumers can track their packages using voice commands.
“Busy fleet managers should be able to get quick updates about their fleets — from their phones, offices, or homes — just like they would a weather update,” said Brad Taylor, vice president of data and IoT 2 solutions at Omnitracs. “We look forward to providing solutions to other customers who seek similar technology for their fleets, as we see the combination of this with predictive analytics as very powerful.”