TruETA: Trimble Takes Estimated Time of Arrival to the Next Level in Europe

Estimated time of arrival (ETA) is a crucial help for dispatchers in transport and logistics. Now, these organizations serving the European market can leverage the Trimble TruETA™ solution to calculate ETAs with even greater precision. The system calculates driving distance taking into account current and historical traffic, as well as a variety of other parameters such as average historical loading and unloading times for each activity or the remaining driving time—regardless of whether the driver is using the navigation system or not. Is one activity delayed, then all activities already planned for that day are automatically recalculated.

“The underlying data are the decisive factors for the accuracy of ETA calculations. And TruETA incorporates more data than ever before,” said Peter Huysmans, general manager Trimble Transport & Logistics Europe.

To deliver these innovations, Trimble Transport & Logistics integrates seamlessly with a full suite of Trip Management services from Trimble MAPS. TruETA calculates the route based on the geo-position of both the vehicle’s current location and its destination, while factoring in all of the relevant vehicle information, such as height and weight as well as possible road and environmental restrictions for heavy goods vehicles.

Integration of Driving Times and Rest Periods

Driving hours and rest breaks are taken into account. Across Europe, requirements regarding maximum driving times, mandatory breaks as well as daily and weekly rest periods must be followed, in order to comply with government regulations and customers businesses. 

“The driving times and rest periods can also affect the schedule. Even if a driver is only 50 kilometres away from their destination, they may have to take a break first because of a prior traffic jam, for example, which may delay the driver’s arrival,” Huysmans explained.

Throughout the journey, real-time data is pulled and synchronized with the vehicle adjusting the route and updating the ETA when unexpected stops may occur.

A Customisable User Interface

During the development of TruETA for Europe, Trimble placed special emphasis on making the system as user-friendly as possible. Dispatchers can find all the information they need via the user-friendly and customisable FleetCockpit office interface, which displays the position of each truck on a map. The colours green, yellow and red, respectively indicate roads on which traffic is flowing smoothly, areas where there are delays and sections affected by traffic jams. The current weather conditions can also be viewed at the click of a mouse. Should there be any unexpected events, for example because the driver changes their route, the system can also inform the dispatcher via an optional alert and notification.

Contributing to Greater Competitiveness

Transport and logistics companies have long faced tough competitive pressures, which in many cases have been exacerbated by COVID-19. Given this situation, Peter Huysmans believes that digitalisation will be increasingly crucial for the future viability of logistics companies:

“Instead of many time-consuming and error-prone telephone calls with the drivers, TruETA keeps dispatchers up to date at all times at the click of a mouse—and they can also share this information with customers. This allows companies to optimise their processes while also giving them an edge over the competition.”