June 22, 2023
Sr. Director, Product & Partner Marketing
The physical operations industry has consistently been at the forefront of change—new vehicles and equipment, new fuels, new strategies to thrive in environments that are in a state of constant flux.
Technology has always been a powerful tool to help physical operations leaders address the challenges that come with this change, but we've reached a tipping point. Today, physical operations leaders aren't interested in technology for technology's sake. Instead, they are intently focused on solutions that can help their workforce do more, faster.
In fact, in Samsara's recent 2023 State of Connected Operations Report, over half of respondents, 56%, said that improving workforce productivity with new technologies is a critical priority for their organization. Moreover, leaders predict that 55% of their employees in the field will rely completely on digital workflows to perform day-to-day tasks by 2025.
Today, we are excited to announce an extensive slate of new product offerings that will help physical operations leaders do all of this, and more:
Mobile Experience Management (MEM)
Asset Tracking solution and Find My Asset
Smart Trailers solution
HD Camera Connector
Smart Notifications and Attributes
These product offerings put the employee experience front and center by making the way people work more personalized, connected, and integrated. Solutions such as Virtual Coach, MEM, HD Camera Connector, and Driver Assignment offer personalized experiences that empower employees and drive engagement, critical factors for retaining workers. Solutions like Find My Asset, Smart Trailers, and Connected Forms provide connected experiences, to streamline operations—from the cab, to the field, to the back office—and help uncover better ways of collaborating. Finally, technology must be easy to integrate system and organization-wide—through tools like Data Connectors, Smart Notifications, and Attributes—to break down data silos, allow more employees to access and analyze information, and to drive better outcomes.
Read on to learn more about these new features and how they are helping workers tackle today’s biggest operational challenges, as well as build for a safer, more efficient, and more sustainable future.
Mobile device adoption is on the rise for commercial drivers, and the organizations that connect their workforces see a range of benefits. According to Gallup, these include a 17% boost in productivity, a 21% increase in profitability, and a 24% decrease in turnover.
However, more devices can mean more challenges with deployment and management across a distributed workforce. It's time-consuming for safety, operations, and IT teams to set up, troubleshoot, and secure mobile devices at scale, and it becomes even more difficult to make the mobile experience work for the specific needs of frontline employees. Mobile technology needs to be easy to use, frictionless, and context-relevant for all teams, from the field to the back office.
Samsara’s new Mobile Experience Management (MEM) is an integrated software solution that puts employees, not devices, at the center of mobile management. MEM is purpose-built to allow operations professionals the ability to easily customize, control, consolidate, and secure Android devices for the uniquely remote and rugged contexts their employees operate in, all in the same Samsara platform as the rest of their operations.
Managers can create a tailored mobile experience that gives workers in the field easy access to the applications they need, as well as train drivers in the field and provide remote support, helping unlock productivity. Moreover, managers can use Focus Mode to limit distractions, so drivers can stay focused and compliant on the road. With these features and many more, MEM helps keep teams safe, productive, and connected, no matter where the job takes them.
U.S. Logistics Solutions, a final-mile logistics company serving the eastern half of the United States, is one customer that has seen substantial improvements from Samsara MEM. The company deployed the solution to gain more control over their tablets, and as a result they’ve lowered their preventable collision rates by 15% year-over-year, and achieved a 70% reduction in data usage.
As Todd Boldin, Director of Safety at U.S. Logistics Solutions, said: “MEM has helped us build a much better safety culture. By giving our drivers confidence that we are here for them 24 hours a day, it improves compliance, reduces stress, and helps them be more efficient and productive.”
MEM for Android devices is now available for purchase in Early Access for customers in the United States and Canada. Click here for more information.
For commercial fleets, driver turnover continues to be a stubborn problem, and organizations are turning to coaching to help retain employees. But the type of coaching drivers receive makes a difference. Drivers want more autonomy and the ability to take ownership of their training, as well as a more personalized coaching experience. However, this can be hard to do with geographically dispersed fleets and managers who juggle other priorities in addition to in-person or over-the-phone coaching.
Virtual Coach is a unique coaching aid that empowers drivers to self-coach with video-based AI insights from anywhere, anytime. With Virtual Coach, managers can personalize coaching experiences for individual drivers, directly from within the Samsara platform, whether it’s sharing a critical coaching moment for self-coaching, or requiring an additional manager-led coaching session for reinforcement.
After coaching has been prescribed, drivers can review safety event video and safety tips for risky behaviors in the Samsara Driver App without needing to wait for an in-person coaching session with their manager. These are the same video-based AI insights that managers see in the Samsara dashboard, empowering drivers with all the information needed to self-coach and, if needed, prepare for a manager-led coaching conversation. These democratized insights help bring transparency to drivers, helping to boost employee buy-in, engagement, retention, and productivity.
Fraley & Schilling (F&S), a premier lightweight fleet operator hauling metal products, building materials, and machinery, has used Virtual Coach to enhance their culture of safety. As Nicky Cupp, Director of Continuous Improvement at F&S, said: "Sharing and providing feedback to drivers through safety event videos and Driver Safety Scores within the Driver App allows us to be more transparent with drivers and reduce the burden on our coaching staff. Keeping drivers informed of their Safety Score is key to fostering a culture of responsibility and accountability."
Virtual Coach is now available in beta for customers globally. Click here for more information.
Operations companies that manage physical assets are facing a difficult set of facts. First, theft is on the rise, with the cost of stolen heavy equipment reaching an estimated $1 billion every year. Second, it's taking longer to replace stolen equipment, with lead times on equipment increasing from an average of two months in 2019 to seven months in 2022. The bottom line: Physical operations companies need to protect the assets they have and optimize their use.
Samsara’s new and improved Asset Tracking solution helps customers do just that, protecting equipment, optimizing asset utilization, and boosting productivity and service. To deliver this solution, Samsara’s next-generation unpowered and powered Asset Gateways—ruggedized with IP69K waterproof grade exterior to withstand tough conditions—can monitor diverse types of physical assets across operations and are globally available to customers. Additionally, the new unpowered gateway also utilizes user-replaceable, off-the-shelf AA batteries to simplify management.
One example of a customer who is benefiting from this new solution is CR Jackson, an infrastructure company focused on highway construction. The company recently used Samsara’s Asset Tracking and new unpowered gateway to improve asset visibility and recover over $120,000 worth of stolen equipment.
As a part of the new Asset Tracking solution, Samsara has also launched Find My Asset. Taking advantage of the cutting-edge technology built into Samsara’s new Asset Gateways, customers can use this all-new feature to save time locating and tracking lost or stolen high-value unpowered assets. Find My Asset gives customers the ability to proactively locate assets, reducing wait times from hours to minutes. To enhance visibility into equipment on the move, customers can also set up more frequent location updates that can be adjusted, extended, or terminated throughout a set period of time.
Customers in the United States can now opt in to the Find My Asset beta.
Click here for more information about Asset Tracking.
With its next-generation Asset Gateways, Samsara has also launched an evolution of its Smart Trailer solution to help track and protect trailers, boost utilization, and elevate temperature-sensitive fleet operations. Smart Trailers gives organizations the ability to manage trailers and reefers with a single platform for their entire fleet, and can deliver a range of benefits. For example, Dohrn Transfer Company, a less-than-truckload carrier that provides trucking services and local delivery across the U.S., was able to realize an estimated $78,000 of driver productivity (measured in wages) at a single customer’s site.
New features for the Smart Trailer solution announced today include:
The new Samsara Powered Asset Gateway now connects to Samsara Door Monitor and Samsara Cargo Monitor for added visibility across all trailers. This feature is available to global customers.
A new Environmental Monitor (EM31), with improved ingress protection of IP69k waterproof grade, to monitor ambient temperature, helping enhance compliance and reduce load loss. The EM31 will be generally available for all global customers this fall.
New actionable alerts that give customers more flexibility to configure and manage temperature and reefer alerts. These alerts will be generally available to global customers this summer.
In addition, Samsara has evolved its integration partnership with Thermo King to include a two-way cloud integration with TracKing® Telematics, now generally available in North American markets. Now, whether using a gateway or cloud integration, customers can not only monitor but also control their Thermo King reefers from the Samsara dashboard to streamline their reefer operations. Click here for more information about Smart Trailers.
Commercial fleets have to move fast and be flexible. At the same time, a precise understanding of who is driving a particular vehicle at a particular time is a must for a number of reasons, including ELD compliance and coaching the right drivers.
Manual pen-and-paper driver tracking, or tracking drivers by phone or with outdated software, is prone to errors and can't scale across large fleets. At the same time, a solution has to be able to accommodate different policies that govern employee privacy, mobile device use, and other factors.
To combat these challenges, Samsara now offers the industry's most comprehensive Driver Assignment solution with the addition of its new QR Code method. You can choose one of nine different ways to assign drivers for unparalleled flexibility:
QR Code: Drivers can scan a printed or mobile QR Code using a Dual-Facing AI Dash Cam so drivers can sign in for a trip.
API: Bring driver assignment data from external systems into the Samsara dashboard.
Driver App: Drivers can select a vehicle from the list of nearby or recently selected vehicles.
Driver ID Cards: Drivers tap a physical RFID-enabled card against an in-cab card reader.
Static Assignment: Managers can set persistent vehicle assignments per driver in the Samsara dashboard.
Camera ID: Combine dash cam footage and advanced machine learning to automatically assign drivers to trips and vehicles.
Driver ID Token: Drivers use a bluetooth-enabled key fob that automatically pairs with a Vehicle Gateway.
Manual Assignment: Managers can assign drivers when reviewing safety events in the dashboard.
Tachograph: Drivers insert their driver card into a vehicle's tachograph. Available in Europe only.
With the exception of QR code and tachograph, these Driver Assignment methods are generally available to customers worldwide. QR code is available in beta and will be generally available to global customers later this summer. Click here for more information.
For organizations that own and operate fleets, the appeal of cameras is clear: Video can improve safe driving and help exonerate drivers if an incident occurs. Moreover, footage can help prevent loss or theft, serve as proof of delivery, and even help lower insurance premiums.
The key to unlocking these benefits, however, is high-quality 360° video visibility. Drivers face sideswiping and backup incidents and need to have visibility around the vehicle. Without a full picture, it's difficult for safety managers to deliver adequate coaching.
HD Camera Connector is the solution to these challenges. An evolution of Samsara’s existing product, HD Camera Connector offers new and improved capabilities developed as a direct result of customer feedback.
Combined with Samsara Dual-Facing AI Dash Cams, HD Camera Connector enables organizations to improve safety by connecting up to four side, rear, and interior high-definition vehicle cameras to the Connected Operations™ Cloud. Customers gain 360° visibility without needing to rip and replace existing cameras, and HD Camera Connector can be easily implemented through the Installation Flow in Samsara's Fleet Mobile App. Rasmussen Group, a collection of nine companies with operations in the construction, materials, and transportation industries across the United States, has used HD Camera Connector to drive a 25% reduction in backup incidents.
Moreover, safety managers can integrate video with Samsara’s coaching workflows and safety insights, helping to deliver more context using side and rear footage for video-based coaching during or after trips with Live Streaming and Parking Mode. Organizations can also protect themselves against expensive claims through HD video retrieval up to 100 hours.
HD Camera Connector is generally available now to customers in the United States, Canada, and Europe. Click here for more information.
Samsara is helping customers use data more effectively across their operations by simplifying alert set up and management, and by making it easier to quickly find relevant worker and asset details in the Samsara Dashboard.
With Smart Notifications, admins can create a single alert configuration and use a combination of tags and roles to assign notifications to multiple users across an organization with just a few clicks. Now, as roles change and individuals cycle in and out of the organization, admins can simply update a role or tag and have that change automatically propagate across all of their alert configurations.
Attributes are fully customizable, user-generated characteristics that help customers better organize and identify workers and assets in the Samsara Dashboard. Attributes—such as license type, vehicle type, or HOS status—can be used as filters to quickly find the right driver or asset for a job, drill down to the exact data needed in a report, or to get more information on a driver or an asset at glance.
Smart Notifications and Attributes will both be generally available to customers around the globe later this summer.
It can be difficult to reach your business goals when data lives in third-party platforms and can’t be shared between solutions. That’s why Samsara has developed new connectors to easily stream and visualize data across applications, including Fivetran, Kafka, and Power BI. With this holistic visibility, organizations can empower every employee to bridge the gap between data and decision making.
Our Fivetran connector is now generally available to customers in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Kafka and Power BI connectors will be available in beta to global customers this fall.
Digitizing manual processes is a key way that physical operations companies can reduce costs, save time, and become more efficient overall.
That's why Samsara is introducing Connected Forms, a user-friendly mobile workflow solution that allows customers to streamline site operations, such as inspections and incident reports, with digital forms. Launching later this year, Connected Forms allows customers to easily digitize any custom form, enable workers to complete them on the go and eliminate tedious paperwork. Connected Forms will instantly connect the back office to field data to enable fast issue resolution. Moreover, Connected Forms will consolidate data in the Samsara Connected Operations Cloud, helping to deliver real-time actionable insights to drive a safer, more efficient operation.
Connected Forms will be available in early access to customers later this year. Customers interested in joining the beta program can get in touch with our team by registering here.
Our customers make it a priority to find new and innovative ways to use technology to move their operations forward and do more. Every day we see examples of organizations that achieve amazing outcomes by empowering their employees with the solutions and data they need to improve their operations and be safer. At Samsara, it’s always a top priority to innovate with our customers in mind, and we believe these new features are powerful tools you can use to set your organization apart. To learn more about how the Samsara Connected Operations Cloud can help you transform your operations, get in touch with our team.