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Taxi Times International - August 2015 - Deutsch

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FLEET MANAGEMENT The

FLEET MANAGEMENT The taxi company VIP CARE Hospitality uses GPS to manage its vehicles. HELP FROM THE FLEET PORTAL Starting this year, taxi operators in Germany are required to keep a detailed log of their drivers’ working hours. This can often be combined with a fleet management system. Here is one example from the Rhine-Main area. The PTC fleet portal is webbased so that taxis can be managed via laptop, tablet or smartphone. The taxi drivers of the family-run company VIP CARE Hospitality in Rhine-Main area are on the road day and night. Managing director Gunter Zimmer uses the GPS system of the Koblenz-based company PTC-Services to manage his taxis. This allows him to reduce empty runs and provide better information to customers on arrival times. Since the beginning of 2015, the business must compile mandatory timesheets for its drivers. This task can also be integrated into the PTC fleet portal. Zimmer himself worked for many years as a taxi driver. He bought his first taxi with his savings in 1984 and founded VIP CARE Hospitality GmbH in 1991. Since then, his taxis cover a distance of over 120,000 km annually. The GPS system has been in use since 2013. For example, if a customer needs a taxi from Gross-Gerau to the Frankfurt airport, Zimmer simply consults the PTC fleet portal. It lets him track the current location of his taxis and determine which taxi is closest to his customer and can get there sooner. With the GPS system connected to the taximeter, he can also see which of the vehicles is available. Overall, the GPS system allows the taxi company to save driving time, reduce fuel consumption and simplify management. NOT JUST WAITING AROUND AT THE TAXI RANK The taxi company serves between 100 and 140 passengers daily. Most of them are in a hurry and do not want to wait. As an entrepreneur, Zimmer does not want his drivers to just wait around at the taxi rank. “With the GPS system from PTC, we were able to significantly reduce our empty runs”, says the managing director. Zimmer used to make estimates in his head, but now he can easily view it all in the web-based fleet portal. It displays not only the current GPS position of its vehicles, but also the total working time, the speed and the driving direction. “We can finally manage our taxis without stress,” say Zimmer. Passengers are informed of the precise arrival time of the taxi. This allows the taxi company to provide maximum transparency. HOURLY WAGE AND TIMESHEETS Since the beginning of the year, Zimmer is required to pay each driver €8.50 per hour, regardless of his turnover. It everything is billed by the hour, then there is no problem. But it gets more complicated when taxi drivers receive a monthly salary. In this case, the taxi company must make a more precise calculation. The number of hours could add up to the minimum wage for a given month, but not the following month. Moreover, in accordance with section 17 of the German minimum wage law, the company must keep a record of the daily working hours of its employees. They are therefore required to document the beginning and the end of the working period and the total time worked, and to keep these records for two years. If the minimum wage is not met or the record-keeping requirement is not observed, things can get expensive as heavy fines of up to €30,000 and back payments can result. Many taxi companies therefore rely on the integrated timesheet feature of their GPS system (usually modular). Zimmer is also using this feature for the time being. The GPS system of his service provider gives him an overview of the driving and waiting times and simplifies payroll accounting. Precise reports allow him to check the accounting quickly and easily while fulfilling the record-keeping requirement at the same time. bh PHOTO: PTC MANY ADVANTAGES Why Gunter Zimmer uses GPS to manage his taxi fleet. › improved operational management / scheduling › fewer empty runs › prevents undeclared rides › search for closest vehicle › driver identification › driver’s log › connection to taximeter › connection to seat occupancy › timesheets › fulfilment of record-keeping requirement 18 TAXI AUGUST / 2015

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