When EROAD implemented the world’s first network-wide GPS/cellular-based road user charging system in 2009, it revolutionised the way New Zealand transport operators managed and paid road user charges (RUC).
WITH AN EROAD HARDWARE device (Ehubo) installed in their vehicle, connected to the company’s payment gateway, operators are able to purchase RUC online anywhere, at any time. Instead of spending valuable time keeping on top of paper licences, they now receive them electronically for display on the Ehubo screen. It has also reduced downtime, by enabling instant delivery if a vehicle is on the road when a distance licence runs out, or when additional licences are necessary to cover increased loads.
EROAD now collects nearly 30 percent of all heavy vehicle RUC in this country, and is the country’s largest electronic RUC agent, as transport operators increasingly choose electronic over paper RUC licences.
The EROAD solution consists of a secure, approved vehicle hardware device, and a bank-grade, web-based payment and services gateway. EROAD’s Ehubo (or Tubo for trailers) replaces traditional mechanical hubodometers and is designed to be tamper-evident, operate at a wide range of temperatures and consume very little energy. The Ehubo measures distance travelled with a high degree of accuracy, using a combination of internal and external sensors including the vehicle’s odometer pulse, GPS satellites and accelerometers. The information it collects from the vehicle is processed by EROAD’s application server and made available to users via a secure website, called Depot. EROAD customers use Depot to pay and manage their RUC and access fleet management and commercial services.
With EROAD’s AutoRUC enabled, transport operators are able to buy RUC automatically in the minimum legal increments. Before a distance licence expires, the new licence is automatically purchased and delivered electronically, with no risk of non-compliance and the associated penalties. It also offers significant improvements in cash flow, with the ability to reduce the size of the RUC licences being purchased while remaining compliant.
Further cash flow benefits are delivered through EROAD’s offroad module. The EROAD system automatically links and electronically maps the correct RUC licences with the distance travelled and with all the off-road locations travelled by the truck and trailer. As a RUC licence expires, the system pre-populates the RUCOR form and accurately estimates the refund.
Since it launched electronic RUC, EROAD has gone on to deliver a comprehensive range of commercial services that provide information to better manage the fuel efficiency of fleets, and simplify compliance with service and health and safety requirements. These include:
- EZfuel – combines transactional data from oil companies’ fuel cards with vehicle distance and location information. Together, these measure fuel performance and identify trends and exceptions.
- Service module – provides standard and custom service scheduling by date and distance, delivers service history reports by vehicle, date and/or category, and sends operators and workshop service alerts including COF, WOF and rego.
- Over-speed reports – list vehicles in a fleet that have over-speed events for a specified timeframe, including over-speed activity on all roads that have a posted maximum speed.
- Idle reports – list vehicles that have stopped (or idled) for long periods of time with the ignition on. Details of time, showing the location on a map. With EROAD’s Driver ID hardware installed, idle reports are shown by driver as well as vehicle.idle events are also included, sorted by
- Fleet activity reports – real-time and historical vehicle information is displayed on digital maps, enabling transport operators to optimise routes, manage job schedules, and monitor stop/idle times and driver hours.
- EZmessage – allows companies to send messages to their fleets in real time using an encrypted connection.
Ahead of this year’s Health and Safety Reform Bill, EROAD has released a range of products to help its customers improve compliance with health and safety, including Virtual Speed Camera, EROAD Share – which enables secure data sharing between organisations working together, and the EROAD Driver app. Available for Android smartphones and tablets, Driver includes the NZTA-approved EROAD Electronic Logbook, EZmessage and Driver Vehicle Inspection Reports.
EROAD’s customers now include many of the country’s largest vehicle fleets, leading civil contracting firms, and more than a third of local and regional councils.
Since commercial launch, it has won numerous awards, including Most Innovative Hardware Product, and Most Innovative Service Product in the 2010 NZ Hi-Tech Awards, and a finalist place in the Emerging Company category in the 2013 NZ Hi-Tech Awards. Its EZfuel module won the company fifth place ranking on the New Zealand Green 50 list in 2012 and Highly Commended in the transport category of the EECA Awards in 2014.
EROAD’s rapid growth has seen it ranked on the Deloitte Technology Fast 500 Asia Pacific index for the past three years and on the Deloitte Fast50 for two. Last year EROAD listed on the NZX main board and launched commercially in the USA and Australia, becoming the first approved electronic Weight-Mile Tax (WMT) service provider in North America.
It has also been appointed by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment as a syndicated supplier for the procurement of fleet optimisation products and services to participating and eligible agencies.
Last year the company reached a major RUC milestone: $500 million of RUC collected in this country on behalf of NZTA.
EROAD’s expansion into North America and Australia hasn’t reduced the company’s focus on New Zealand. It remains very much a Kiwi company, committed to continual investment in research and development to help New Zealand’s transport sector meet the challenges facing it now and into the future.