In the construction industry, your equipment is constantly moving around to different work sites. It can be a lot to keep track of all the necessary assets, and where they need to be; however, with the help of GPS tracking devices, this process is much more efficient.
Making sure that your construction equipment is in the right place at the right time is essential to the success of your day-to-day operations, and by effectively monitoring your assets through GPS tracking, you can be sure your equipment is protected and deployed efficiently.
GPS tracking solutions can have other distinct benefits for construction companies. Depending on the GPS tracking solution, it might include the ability to directly connect the GPS tracker to the construction equipment to track usage. This can allow a supervisor to remotely know when each piece of equipment is being used. You can even compare utilization of your different pieces of equipment to see which machines are sitting idle and would be better moved to a different job site.
GPS tracking solutions can also be used to manage maintenance for equipment. The solutions can tell you when it’s time to refuel or even service a piece of machinery. They might even report back the machine’s specific error codes which could be overkill or useful depending on the specific needs.
Understanding whether a gps tracker is going on powered equipment or unpowered equipment is crucial. If it’s going on powered equipment, the GPS tracker can hardwire directly into the powered equipment’s power source and potentially ingest additional telematics data. However, if the gps tracker is deployed on unpowered equipment, it will need to be battery powered. Battery powered trackers come in many shapes and sizes and choosing the right one means understanding the context and battery needs.
Learn more about the 4 key benefits of GPS tracking for construction companies here.
How to Choose the Best GPS Tracker for Construction Equipment
Whether your tracking needs involve large-scale machines, trucks used to deliver supplies, or other construction-related equipment, there is a wide range of tracking options available ranging from weather-proof battery-powered trackers to hard-wired GPS trackers that plug directly into powered equipment or vehicles.
You can efficiently monitor your equipment by pairing the right GPS tracking device for your operation with high-quality and easy-to-use software.
Below are some of the most important questions to consider when deciding on a potential GPS equipment tracking solution:
- Are the GPS trackers going on powered or unpowered equipment? – Select the GPS tracking device that is most optimal for your equipment. You need to determine if the equipment has a power source or not. If so, you likely want a tracker that can hardwire into the power source. Devices range from OBD and hard-wired plug-in devices to small, battery-powered, wireless, weather-proof trackers. If the trackers will go on unpowered equipment, make sure they have sufficient battery.
- Does the tracking software meet your needs? – Are you mainly looking to prevent theft of your equipment? Do you just want to know which job sites your equipment is on? Do you need to know when to do maintenance? Regarding GPS tracking software, understanding your own needs is essential to knowing which solution is right for you. Make sure it has the features you need for your business, and consider whether it has usable phone apps (try checking iOS or Android App Store reviews). Don’t forget to consider how easy the interface is for your team to use so you can ensure you’re getting the most out of it.
- Is it cost-effective? – Determine what GPS tracking service will be the most cost-effective for your business. By selecting the cheapest option, you could be sacrificing the quality of the devices and your provider's dependability. By selecting the most expensive option, you may be spending more on tracking than your equipment is even worth.
- Is the technology reliable? – GPS tracking companies may promise you the world, but they aren’t truly worthwhile if the service keeps going down or has spotty connectivity. Or if the tracker updates and alerts come in minutes or even hours late.
- How difficult is the implementation? – Installing GPS trackers on a large construction operation can be potentially very time-consuming. Some GPS trackers require mechanics to install. And others have software so difficult that the operators will need to attend multiple training sessions.
- How is the technical support? – If you ever need help, you should ensure the provider will be there for you. Consider what kind of support you will receive from your GPS tracking provider. It’s one thing to provide quality devices, but selecting a provider that offers quality customer service before and after purchasing is optimal. It’s smart to read online reviews to determine whether a GPS Tracking provider really stands behind its products.
After carefully researching several factors, including quality, service, and price, we have determined the seven best GPS tracking services for construction equipment.
The 7 Best GPS Trackers for Construction Equipment
- Verizon Connect
- GPS and Track
Hapn offers a wide range of rugged tracking hardware at competitive prices, along with a powerful yet user-friendly platform that enables you to easily monitor your equipment is. Battery-powered and hard-wired devices of all shapes and sizes are available to fit nearly any equipment tracking use case. As a reasonably priced GPS tracking solution, Hapn also offers top-rated customer support and flexible features that will save you time and money.
- Simple to get started. Easy to use apps and GPS trackers that install in minutes.
- Very reliable technology. 99.9% uptime. Great cellular coverage.
- A wide range of trackers with valuable features to control the trackers and change their update frequency over the air.
- A wide range of features geared towards equipment tracking, from multiple alert types to usage reports.
- Excellent + responsive customer support
- Lack the ability to retrieve extensive equipment engine fault codes.
- No satellite trackers available. Satellite trackers are necessary for the most remote work sites.
Samsara provides its users with one of the most intuitive platforms on this list. It offers real-time tracking services with various data insights that can help maximize your operational efficiency. They tailor their services more towards fleet and vehicle tracking, which includes the ability for customers to track service vehicles, geofence alerts, and performance data that includes route optimization and vehicle analytics. Samsara strongly focuses on providing top-tier customer service and an easy-to-use platform that improves fleet productivity.
- Samsara’s software has a clean modern interface and usable phone apps.
- Samsara has a wide selection of features and reports particularly related to fleet tracking.
- Samsara’s hardware is well engineered and reliable.
- Samsara’s software has so many features that it can be very difficult to use. Requires team training to learn.
- Samsara’s feature focus is more on fleet management and dash cameras, rather than equipment tracking.
- Samsara doesn’t have a wide variety of trackers for construction equipment.
- Samsara requires signing three-year contracts and will rarely let customers out when they are unhappy.
3. Verizon Connect
Verizon Connect is well regarded as a provider because it provides GPS tracking information and includes data like temperature change, vibration levels, and door movement. They also offer geofencing services that alert you if your equipment leaves a designated area. Users report that Verizon Connect offers an easy-to-use platform. However, there are some negative reviews surrounding the reliability of their tracking services, which lands them a little farther down the list.
- A wide range of features for a variety of needs.
- Good network coverage via Verizon.
- Focus is on fleet tracking, so they are under featured when it comes to equipment tracking.
- Very few tracker models available for equipment tracking.
- Many online reviews mention that reliability on the hardware isn’t great.
- Not the best customer support.
Geoforce got their start in the Oil & Gas industry and has been helping companies track their assets for over a decade. Geoforce has a particularly robust satellite tracking hardware line which is very valuable for industries that need coverage in remote areas such as the Oil & Gas industry. Their software is in need of a face lift, but has the minimal features necessary for many equipment companies.
- Great satellite tracker options.
- Easy to use software.
- Software is in need of an update.
- Key features such as updating tracker settings over the air aren't available within the software.
- Reporting isn’t very flexible.
Tenna began as a construction business and so has a unique insight into serving the industry. This allows them to offer excellent features that are particularly suited to the construction industry. And you can be assured that they won’t include extraneous functionality irrelevant to those in your industry. They have a wide range of hardware and software features and are known for excellent support.
- Wide range of hardware tracking options include QR tags and Bluetooth beacons
- Extensive telematics data availability
- Well designed maintenance features
- Expensive solution and could be feature overkill for small and medium sized construction businesses.
- Maintenance product is required and might not be needed if clients already use maintenance or rental equipment software.
Geotab is another tracking service on this list that provides users with a wide variety of data sets aimed at fleet optimization and production. They are one of the largest and oldest tracking providers around. Not only do they provide basic vehicle tracking, but they also offer valuable information like fleet fuel management (which provides insights into proper fuel-efficient driving tactics), and other insights like driver scorecards and safety reporting, and sustainability and compliance-related information. Their main goal is to provide their customers with accurate tracking and a large amount of data geared towards helping optimize your fleet's performance.
- Excellent functionality for fleet tracking.
- They have an App marketplace with many additional features and integrations.
- Very reliable technology.
- Only appropriate for vehicles, but not a true solution for equipment.
- Cannot purchase directly from Geotab. You need to buy through a reseller.
Trackunit offers multiple products that can monitor your equipment at all times, receive intel on maintenance and damages, and allow operators to report machine issues from your fingertips on a mobile platform designed specifically for construction. Trackunit is the platform built for construction companies to gather, connect and present data to you in one intuitive and easy-to-use place. There is so much CAN bus information provided by Trackunit that for many customers it can be data overload.
- Built with the construction industry in mind. Great functionality for construction businesses.
- Wide variety of hardware for deployment on different types of construction equipment.
- Nicely designed software especially for equipment maintenance.
- All of the telematics data that it provides could be overkill for many businesses. All of the error codes could result in many faulty alerts.
- An expensive solution.
- They are focused on the very largest of construction businesses and are less inclined to work with small / medium sized businesses.
Although Solar-Trak may not offer the wide range of devices and data insights that some of the providers on this list do, they still offer a solid and affordable GPS tracking solution ideal for construction. Outside their standard tracker, they also offer a battery-powered device, and a vehicle tracker plugs into an OBD port. Their platform may not be as intuitive as others on this list. However, it still allows you to monitor your assets, track equipment at all times, track vehicle mileage, and collect essential data points beneficial to your operational success. They also have a mobile capability for their services.
- Built specifically for equipment tracking. Has good maintenance and usage reporting.
- Solar tracking hardware options.
- Simple UI means it’s easy to use.
- Outdated software UI. Doesn’t have a fully functional phone app.
- Limited selection of trackers. One for powered equipment and one for unpowered.
9. GPS and Track
GPS and Track offers one of this list's most affordable GPS tracking solutions. With no monthly fees or contracts, their pricing for their many devices is very straightforward and customer friendly. Their devices suited for construction include fleet-based, battery-powered, waterproof, hard-wired, and even anti-theft tracking devices. GPS and Track is perfect for cutting costs but still adopting a reliable GPS-tracking solution.
- Affordable service options available.
- A variety of features in the software.
- Software could use an update.
- Not a real solution for equipment tracking. No hardwired trackers for tracking usage.
Choose the right GPS tracker for your business
No matter what the size of your operation, or what kind of construction asset management needs you have, a GPS tracking device will be an ideal fit. With the best GPS tracking solution for your construction equipment, you can keep tabs on where your equipment is and gain valuable insight when you need it.
Contact us today to learn more about our pricing and how Hapn can benefit your operation.