We live in an increasingly digital world, and GPS tracking is a great example of how new technologies can be used to make rough jobs safer than ever. It’s not outlandish to think of GPS tracking as somewhat of an intrusion, especially in the hands of workers who have been doing their jobs without them for years, but the facts remain: GPS tracking is one of the most vital and useful technologies to ever penetrate the world of tough manual labor. We already know that GPS technologies can…
- Keep tabs on children and pets
- Help manage large fleets of vehicles
- Monitor vital statistics like temperature and fuel levels
- Allow workers to call for help
- Allow supervisors to pinpoint inefficiency and eliminate it
… And Shell, one of the world’s leaders in oil and fuel, will be incorporating this versatile technology in all of those ways and more. Oil sands workers in particular have been chosen for Shell’s pilot use of these devices at the Albian Sands mining operation, and soon enough, GPS tracking will be an industry standard. The benefits are too numerous to count, especially when that GPS vehicle tracking device saves a life.
The trackers Shell will be using are very similar to those manufactured by Bofan, harnessing a handful of the same features that we offer. The trackers they will be using will rely on a radio frequency ID, allowing supervisors to observe and manage workers and vehicles in real-time, responding to emergencies and roadblocks instantly. These trackers aren’t just being implemented to make things run more smoothly, however. By allowing supervisors to monitor worker fatigue, workers will no longer be overworked, and with their tracker’s panic button, emergency personnel can respond to dangerous situations at a moment’s notice, minimizing risk and saving lives.
The company has spoken at length on their decision to implement these new GPS tracking solutions, stating that, “On the operational/competitiveness side, we believe that our workforce comes to Albian wanting to do a good job. Our focus in this pilot is to use the data to help us better understand the barriers that are getting in the way of that. By understanding the roadblocks, we can take action to eliminate them as close to real-time as possible. In a nutshell, we are trying to improve how we run our business to help empower our employees to work more effectively and efficiently.”
While some veterans of the industry are hesitant to accept these devices into their workplace, Shell reassures them that the devices aren’t being used to evaluate an individual worker’s progress (unless an investigation necessitates this). Shell is simply adapting the methods that have brought success to other fleet-based companies for years, and with advancements in GPS tracking being made often, it’s no wonder.
This technology is taking the world by storm, bettering work conditions, bolstering a company’s ability to produce efficiently, and preventing theft and misuse of company property. More advanced tracking systems can even ensure that a worker is buckling up before operating heavy machinery.
How do you feel about the utilization of tracking devices in workplaces like these? What other industries could benefit from tracking and monitoring of resources and workers? Let us know in the comments!