If you’re like most truckers, ELD is one of the trucking industry’s 3-letter words that makes you want to utter a string of 4-letter words. Especially now that you’re sorting through the hundreds of electronic logging devices on the market. How do you choose the right ELD? And, who decided you need one of these devices anyway?
The FMCSA published the ELD rule that applies to most motor carriers and drivers who are required to maintain records of duty status (RODS) or hours of service (HOS). It’s part of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century, or MAP-21 initiative. The rule requires that the devices meet specific design and performance standards and registration with the FMCSA. You can find a list of registered providers on the FMCSA website. However, it is up to the drivers to check whether the device you purchase has been registered and meets ELD standards stipulated in the rule.
The goal of the ELD rule is to improve highway safety by keeping drivers from overextending their time on the road. Electronic logging devices provide more accurate reports of driving time than paper log books by automatically recording mileage in real time. This information can also be helpful for IFTA quarterly reports. Overall, the benefits of an ELD outweigh the costs and effort. Of course, that is contingent on choosing the right product.
Choosing the Right ELD for Your Needs
First, you want an ELD that is easy to use, affordable, and reliable. Here are a few more suggestions of what to look for in your search for the ideal product:
- Compliance: Your ELD provider should be FMCSA and DOT-certified. The products should be self-tested by the manufacturer to ensure FMCSA technical specs are met. The device should also be IFTA-compliant, meaning it tracks miles driven in each jurisdiction by pinpointing mileage at state crossings.
- Company details: Know who you’re dealing with. Find out how many years the company has been in business, check customer reviews, research the company structure, number of employees, and their commitment to quality and customer support.
- Pricing and plans: Does the provider offer different plans and pricing options to help you avoid spending more than you should? Can you cancel or change your plan without penalties?
- Formats: ELDs are typically offered in two formats: (1) an all-in-one package that includes a device with a preloaded mobile app, or (2) a bring your own device (BYOD) which can be put on existing hardware. Smartphones or tablets can be used as part of an ELD solution.
- Flexibility: Will one device work in any type of vehicle? Having a universal solution in all vehicles in your fleet reduces costs, saves time, and cuts down on confusion.
- Evolves with changing regulations: No doubt, the ELD regulations will change at some point. Will your provider ensure that their ELD solution remains compliant?
- Cloud-based solutions: Cloud-based systems ensure that your information is safe and secure. So, if something happens to your smartphone or tablet, you can still access your data.
If you’re still undecided about which ELD trucking solution is right for you, take a look at what TruckingOffice has to offer.
Let TruckingOffice be Your ELD Provider
Here are just a few of the reasons you need our TruckingOffice ELD. First of all, it’s an easy to use, plug & play system that requires no installation. Also, it is a complete system, FMCSA-certified, and is available on Android or iPhone. You’ll be pleased to know our ELD can be easily integrated with our TMS solution to give you everything you need to run a profitable, organized, and fully compliant operation.