Harnessing GPS and routing technology to grow your business

Protection against theft, last minute appointments and misuse of equipment


As they win over customers, branch out into new territories, or start offering more services a challenge that landscaping companies usually face is heightening complexity. While overcoming this obstacle, knowing that your vehicles and equipment are where they’re supposed to be can help reduce stress. Furthermore, enabling your crews to navigate easier can boost your reputation by ensuring they always arrive on time.

GPS transponders placed on vehicles, trailers, and equipment are a good investment because they can protect against theft. In addition, managers can respond quicker when a client makes a last-minute appointment and a crew just happens to be in the area. Depending on the system being used, GPS transponders can even provide a history of where the asset travelled to, which can alert you if and when a crewmember was ‘moonlighting’ (i.e. using your equipment to provide services outside of your normal operations).

Navigation systems are cheap these days and free up your operator’s smartphone so they can more easily respond to calls. Most solutions offer live-traffic reports, which means when a road is being worked on or if there has been an accident your driver will be told immediately. Furthermore, waypoints can be added into the memory beforehand so that time doesn’t have to be wasted typing addresses in manually. Multilingual voices also come standard on most GPS devices.

Global positioning systems (GPSs) have been around for decades. The technology relies on satellites and ground-based stations. The receiver in your transponder picks up signals from multiple satellites, which are ‘visible’ in the sky at all times, and based on those triangulates its location. Ground-based GPS systems are responsible for confirming the integrity of the satellites’ orbits. In total there are 31 GPS satellites being used by the US.

Automotive navigation systems consist of a GPS transponder, a computer, and a screen. The digital map being used differs from unit to unit, but in most cases if the exact address you need can’t be found you can simply input the house next door instead. Some models can be linked with smartphones via Bluetooth to display text messages. Installing them usually involves placing a suction-cupped base on the dashboard or windshield, which is easy and won’t damage the vehicle.