Bull or Bear? It’s Complicated…
Are we starting a bullish consolidation or a deeper bearish leg down? … making both bull and bear arguments … why a focus on the Fed in September might be wrong
Are we watching the beginning of a brief, healthy pullback within a new bull market…
Or did the bull we’ve been riding for the last two months suddenly take off its mask to reveal a growling bear that never actually went away?
Last Friday, we looked at a market forecast that’s shared by Louis Navellier, Luke Lango, and our technical team of John Jagerson and Wade Hansen.
In short, it’s “near-term weakness followed by longer-term bullishness.”
Between the second half of last week and today, it appears that weakness is here.
But the question is whether it will be just a reset rather than something more sinister. Luke highlighted this tradeoff in last week’s Early Stage Investor Daily Notes:
If we pull back 5% and then shoot 10% higher, taking out critical technical levels by mid-September, then a new bull market will be confirmed.
If we pull back 5% and then keep dropping (10%, 15%, etc.), then this will go down as the greatest bear market rally of all time.
We are crossing our fingers for a mild pullback followed by a much stronger bullish surge. But today, let’s look at the other possibility.
After all, wise investors focus more on what can go wrong than what can go right. It’s the old idea of “play great defense, and the offense will take care of itself.”
Recapping the bullish case
Just about everything hinges on inflation, and as an extension, monetary policy from the Federal Reserve.
If inflation is largely conquered, things fall into place:
Earnings won’t be as negatively affected by inflationary erosion… employers won’t have to batten down the hatches and lay off workers… the U.S. consumer will have more disposable income in his/her pocketbook to support the economy… and the Fed won’t need to keep the pedal to the metal on rate hikes.
Now, in good news, July’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) number was down from June’s. Even better, it came in below forecasts.
On top of that, gasoline prices, which make up nearly 5% of the CPI, continue to fall dramatically.
According to GasBuddy, the average retail price of a regular gallon of gas is about $3.85. It hasn’t been this low since the beginning of March.
Plus, we’re finishing a Q2 earnings season that hasn’t been as dire as feared. Yes, businesses are feeling inflation. But we haven’t seen the across-the-board earnings-cuts that many expected. And as corporate managers looked toward the end of the year, there haven’t been cries of “the sky is falling.”
We could also point toward any number of smaller pieces of bullish evidence.
For example, last week, the Business Outlook Survey from the Philadelphia Fed unexpectedly rose to 6.2 in August from negative 12.3 in July. Economists had expected the number to come in at negative 5.0.
There’s more we could highlight, but for the sake of brevity, here’s the takeaway: At this moment, the economy is not crumbling under the weight of inflation. And as importantly, inflation’s direction appears to have turned south.
Tying in stocks, regular Digest readers know that the stock market is forward-looking in nature. Given this, if Wall Street believes that economic conditions 12 months from today will be good based on the positive factors we just touched on, then that’s what it will price into the stock market.
Translation – we’re in a healthy pullback today, which will be followed by a rally.
But are economic conditions going to be so rosy in 12 months?
How the bull case might be overconfident
Have we tamed inflation?
I can’t say “no.” But anyone who says “yes” with certainty is either intentionally misleading you or uninformed.
I write that because if we dig into the most recent CPI report, we find that two of the three largest components of inflation rose last month.
From the Bureau of Labor Statistics:
The gasoline index fell 7.7 percent in July and offset increases in the food and shelter indexes, resulting in the all items index being unchanged over the month.
The energy index fell 4.6 percent over the month as the indexes for gasoline and natural gas declined, but the index for electricity increased.
The food index continued to rise, increasing 1.1 percent over the month as the food at home index rose 1.3 percent…
The shelter index continued to rise but did post a smaller increase than the prior month, increasing 0.5 percent in July compared to 0.6 percent in June.
Frankly, nearly all of the CPI victory can be attributed to lower gas prices. But as we pointed out last week in the Digest, crude oil prices could easily race higher from here.
Goldman Sach’s head of energy research sees retail gasoline prices in the U.S. surging back to about $5 per gallon, with Brent oil futures going as high as $130 per barrel.
But the skeptical investor might say, “come on, Jeff, how likely is it that inflation will reverse direction and begin climbing again after peaking?”
Well, it’s not unlikely.
Richard Curtin is the University of Michigan professor who has directed the widely-referenced University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment surveys since 1976. When comparing the inflation of the 1970s with that of today, Curtin concluded:
Another critical characteristic of the earlier inflation era was frequent temporary reversals in inflation, only to be followed by new peaks.
That same pattern should be expected in the months ahead.
But let’s push back even against that.
After the most recent CPI report, President Biden boasted “the economy had zero percent inflation in the month of July ”
And while the comment wasn’t wrong (month-to-month inflation was flat – which meant “0%”), it was egregiously misleading (year-over-year inflation was a nosebleed 8.5%).
But the comment is a great reminder of what’s important here – price, not inflation numbers.
For example, let’s say the CPI drops to 7%…but then stays there month after month.
Technically, month-on-month inflation will be wiped out – 0% – because the CPI is remaining steady.
But it’s remaining steady at elevated consumer prices that are draining bank accounts everywhere.
For example, if your grocery bill has exploded 25% over the last year, but then settles in at 18% above last year – with no more month-to-month increases – you’re looking at 0% new, month-to-month inflation.
Are you cheering this?
Of course not.
You’re still spending potentially hundreds of dollars more every month on groceries than you were a year ago…despite “0%” inflation.
The point is that inflation can’t just drop some. It has to keep dropping, month-after-month. But none of us can take that for granted.
Meanwhile, what about the shape of the U.S labor market 12 months from today?
Much has been made about the strength of the U.S. labor market. A common pushback to talk of a recession is “how can you have a recession with the unemployment rate 3.5%, which is the lowest rate in 50 years?”
Well, that’s the unemployment rate today. But what’s on the way? Remember, that’s what Wall Street cares about.
A survey from PwC released last week polled more than 700 U.S. executives and board members across a range of industries.
Here’s Bloomberg with the findings:
Half of respondents said they’re reducing headcount or plan to, and 52% have implemented hiring freezes.
More than four in ten are rescinding job offers, and a similar amount are reducing or eliminating the sign-on bonuses that had become common to attract talent in a tight job market.
This is beginning now. And yet for two months, Wall Street has been partying like what’s coming is a continuation of 3.5% unemployment.
Speaking of the Wall Street party, just a quick word on the bullish surge that began in June…
According to Bank of America’s chief investment strategist Michael Hartnett, this rally has been a “classic bear really, and ultimately [a] self-defeating rally.”
In coming to that conclusion, Hartnett cites 43 bear market rallies since 1929 in which the S&P 500 gained more than 10%, with the average increase being 17.2%. Those surges lasted an average of 39 trading days.
This time, Hartnett points toward the index climbing 17.4% from a rally that lasted 41 trading days, which he calls “textbook.”
But at the end of the day, all of our analysis today is moot thanks to one overriding factor…
What we think is irrelevant. The only thing that matters is what the Fed thinks.
If, at the Fed’s September meeting, Powell & Co. deem that inflation is softening enough to ease up on hikes, then any disagreement from you or me is irrelevant. The Fed will soften and the market will likely take off.
But if the Fed is more hawkish than anticipated, Wall Street will likely act like a toddler who didn’t get his way, resulting in a sulking selloff.
But even then, that’s not the final chapter.
For example, imagine in September Powell says “we’re pleased with our progress and feel inflation has begun a sustained decline, though we shouldn’t declare victory early. We’re hiking by 50 basis-points, and will pause at the following meeting so we can assess the strength of the economic data.”
The market is likely to explode higher. You’re going to want to be in that rally.
But here are the questions investors need to ask…
Would such a market rally have any impact on the 50%+ of corporate managers laying off employees, rescinding job offers, and cutting bonuses?
Will that rally have any impact on energy prices, if a cold snap in the fall results in a surge in demand, which leads to higher prices across the nation?
Will that rally mean anything to the average working family with quickly evaporating savings and rising credit card debt?
But if the Fed says the data are improving, then the economy will be moving in the right direction. So is this perspective too bearish?
Maybe. But ask yourself: Do you really want to put all your weight on the group who brought you the classic hit “transitory inflation”?
The Fed has been wrong ad nauseam for the last 18ish months. Why are we to believe they’re suddenly going to nail it this time?
You have to remember that the Fed is under immense pressure to not wreck the economy
From its perspective, if you overshoot on rate hikes, a recession is guaranteed. Between that and “transitory inflation,” you go down in history as perhaps the worst Fed of all time.
Hmmm… not great. Is there another option?
Well, how about the Fed eases up on hikes to “see what the data tell us?” That would likely avoid an economic crash.
And if it turns out inflation remains elevated, crushing working families, well, that’s bad but it’s far less visible than a recession.
Plus, later down the road, you can always claim that data changed, forcing you to hike rates again at that point. You were “data dependent,” after all! And the data changed!
From the Fed’s perspective, that path holds some appeal.
It does for Kansas City’s Fed member Esther George, who just said:
We have done a lot, and I think we have to be very mindful that our policy decisions often operate on a lag.
We have to watch carefully how that’s coming through.
But what about the other Fed members who are basically saying “hike until inflation gets back to 2%”?
Well, we’ll be looking for clues about which side seems to be in control later this week at the Fed’s central banking conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
So, circling back to the top of today’s Digest…
Is this a bear market rally or the real deal?
Well, in one sense it doesn’t matter.
If it’s a bear market rally but the Fed says all the right things next month, stocks are probably taking off.
If it’s a genuine bullish move today but the Fed is unexpectedly hawkish next month, stocks will likely screech to a halt.
But either way, that won’t be the end of the story.
Economic dominos are tipping over right now, and their paths and eventual impacts won’t fully be known for months to come – regardless of what the Fed does in September.
Here’s one illustration from Bloomberg last week as we wrap up:
The US mortgage industry is seeing its first lenders go out of business after a sudden spike in lending rates, and the wave of failures that’s coming could be the worst since the housing bubble burst about 15 years ago.
There’s no systemic meltdown coming this time around, because there hasn’t been the same level of lending excesses and because many of the biggest banks pulled back from mortgages after the financial crisis.
But market watchers nonetheless expect a string of bankruptcies broad enough to trigger a spike in layoffs in an industry that employs hundreds of thousands of workers, and potentially an increase in some lending rates.
Look beyond today’s short-term market direction and September’s Fed meeting. There’s more to the story.
Published First on InvestorPlace. Read Here.
Featured Image Credit: Photo by Scott Webb; Pexels; Thank you!
How Emerging Technology Is Helping Teams Save on Development Costs
Software developer pay spans a notoriously wide range, but few would argue that U.S.-based development costs are “cheap.”
According to a U.S. News & World Report analysis, the median U.S. software developer earned $120,730 in 2021. Experienced devs can easily command $200,000 per year in cash compensation alone, with incentive pay and company benefits adding significantly to that total.
You most likely know this already. You also most likely know that complex software development projects take months and involve multiple developers and engineers. “Cost spiral” doesn’t begin to describe the situation.
You don’t need to be reminded how important it is to cut DevOps costs wherever possible. Your bosses and shareholders (perhaps one and the same) remind you enough.
Fortunately, emerging technologies and tools are making it easier than ever to reduce software development expenses without compromising output, efficiency, or quality. It’s no exaggeration to say that these new capabilities are revolutionizing software development and helping DevOps teams save money across the board.
Let’s take a closer look at four types of emerging capabilities: next-generation project management tools, cloud computing services, task automation tools, and ephemeral development environments. Each offers potentially game-changing opportunities for teams looking to work faster, smarter, and more efficiently.
Using next-generation project management tools to drive software development efficiency and collaboration
Signs of bad project management include missed deadlines, poor quality control, and infighting within teams that need to collaborate closely. These and other direct results of poor project management are harmful to the broader organization (and to the careers of those responsible for them).
Yet poor project management has a direct financial cost as well. This goes back to what we’ve already discussed: the high cost of labor in a product development environment and, specifically, the very high cost of labor in a software development context. Every day that passes without an anticipated deliverable is a day that brings unanticipated costs. And while every project budget has some built-in wiggle room, said costs eventually become unacceptable.
The good news is that software development teams can turn to an already-existing library of scalable, easy-to-use project management tools that easily map to DevOps use cases. Your team may already use some basic project management tools to manage workflows and keep track of deliverables, timeframes, and responsibilities. Still, if you haven’t surveyed the landscape and assessed individual tools’ capabilities relative to your team’s needs, you’re likely not maximizing their potential.
Look for project management tools with the following capabilities:
- Use cases specifically designed for your specific development framework. For example, Jira’s project management tool is specifically tailored to Agile development teams.
- Relevant integrations with third-party apps, from general-purpose tools like Google Docs (where your spreadsheets likely live already) to DevOps, cloud storage, and even CRM software.
- Sophisticated calendar views that enable visual-oriented team members to “see” their project responsibilities at a glance.
- Powerful developer APIs that allow you to customize the project management interface to your needs and produce efficiency-oriented outputs.
Ideally, your team relies on one core project management tool to manage everything it’s working on together, with individual developers free to use additional tools to manage their personal workflows.
That may require you to cut out a less optimal tool (or several) and disrupt legacy use cases, but it’s better to rip off the Band-Aid now before a bona fide productivity crisis hits. Further down the road, untangling competing and deeply entrenched workflows will surely prove more costly and more disruptive.
Leveraging cloud computing services for projects with multiple stakeholders
Like project management software, cloud computing services no longer count as revolutionary. If your team is small, it might use GSuite for cloud-based storage and collaboration. If it’s larger, it might use Microsoft Azure or Amazon Web Services (whose incomprehensible value only underscores the critical importance of cloud computing).
And so you’re already aware that cloud computing services make development more efficient by enhancing collaboration, reducing duplication of effort, and sharply cutting reliance on onsite database hosting, file storage, and data processing.
Your team can and should use cloud computing services in additional ways that even more directly improve DevOps efficiency and cost control:
- Containerization: Containerization enables software deployment on any computing infrastructure. Bundling app code and file libraries in a self-contained, platform-agnostic unit eliminate the need to match platform-specific software packages (i.e., Windows-compatible) with the correct machines. Containerized deployment is more portable, more scalable, and more resilient — and it’s only possible in the cloud.
- Microservices (vs. monolithic architecture): Microservices break up the development architecture into many small, agile units that communicate via API. Rather than an inflexible “monolith” that needs to be reworked as it scales, microservices can be scaled internally (or new ones created) as needs arise. Like containerization, it’s a much more flexible, agile, and ultimately low-cost way to manage complex DevOps workflows.
Automating repetitive tasks throughout the development lifecycle
Task and workflow automation tools are improving at an incredible clip, and the advantages of next-generation automation are particularly impressive for DevOps teams. As just one example, telecom giant Ericsson drove significant cost savings by automating key aspects of their software development pipeline and transitioning to a continuous deployment model, according to a study published in Empirical Software Engineering.
Transitioning to continuous deployment is a time- and cost-intensive process that may not be practical for smaller teams, at least not in the near term. But your team can leverage task automation in many other ways.
Testing automation deserves special mention here. Automated testing and QA solutions like Robot Framework and Zephyr (respectively) reduce the need for repetitive, labor-intensive poking and prodding by human devs whose efforts are better spent elsewhere. By finding bugs and quality issues earlier in the development workflow, they also reduce the need for costly and time-consuming fixes further along in the process.
Increasingly, code generation itself is automated, thanks to tools like Eclipse. These generative tools will only improve as processing power increases and training sets expand. Consequently, this sets the stage for a near-future scenario where devs will need to manually write far less code. That, in turn, will allow DevOps teams to stretch dev resources further. Additionally, it will free up person-hours for more creative or problem-focused work.
Utilizing ephemeral environments to improve development speed and quality
Finally, software development teams can achieve efficiency and cost improvements at virtually any scale by utilizing ephemeral environments. These are temporary staging environments that can be created at will, generally for a single-purpose feature test or bug fix, and then eliminated when no longer needed to keep costs low.
Ephemeral environments offer clear advantages for development teams. They reduce pull request backlogs, a notorious sticking point (and cost driver) for larger teams. They’re isolated, which reduces the risk of bug-inducing branch conflicts. They’re fully automated, which frees up engineers to deal with more important matters. And because they enable more targeted, granular testing, they speed up the development process overall. They also reduce the risk of an unacceptable issue breaching the main code branch. Repairs on the main code branch are much more time-consuming and costly.
The result is a faster, more efficient workflow that scales with your team in response to demand. For example, Uffizzi’s on-demand ephemeral environment tool helped Spotify add 20% more features to every release of its popular Backstage developer portal platform. Backstage grew rapidly after initial open-sourcing in 2020 and now averages some 400 active pull requests per month. The transition to ephemeral environments slashed average pull request completion times across the platform.
Ephemeral environments can also help smaller development teams achieve the same economies of scale as larger teams. For example, moving to a continuous deployment model might seem out of reach for small teams under the old “bottlenecked” shared environment framework. Start by streamlining this process and freeing up department resources for longer-term strategic work. Ephemeral environments (and other process automation tools) make such shifts possible.
It’s no accident that Uffizzi’s out-of-the-box ephemeral environment solution supercharges the continuous integration/delivery process.
Opportunities abound now, with more to come
Change is already here for software teams accustomed to the old way of doing things. These four emerging or expanding technologies and tools —
- Next-generation project management software
- Expansive and flexible cloud computing services
- Increasingly intelligent and capable task automation tools
- Scalable, on-demand ephemeral environments for better testing and QA
— are making life easier and development faster for DevOps departments around the world. Their capabilities and use cases will only expand as time goes on.
These four technologies aren’t the only emerging opportunities for software developers and the companies that employ them, however. Around-the-bend and over-the-horizon capabilities could change the tech industry in even more fundamental ways:
- AI-driven platforms for developers, like TensorFlow, that promise to dramatically speed up development timeframes and allow teams to do much more with much less
- Infrastructure as Code (IaC) capabilities that break down silos between DevOps teams and the rest of an organization and create trusted, reliable code frameworks that ultimately reduce developer and maintainer workloads
- Low- and no-code application development, which — while possibly overhyped in the short term — could further break down barriers and enable faster, more collaborative action
- Augmented reality tools and apps, whose potential impact remains speculative but which will likely play an increasingly important role in software and product development over the next decade
In the coming years, odds are you’ll integrate all four of these capabilities into your DevOps workflows by then. You’ll most likely take advantage of other emerging technologies and tools in the near future too. These may even include some we don’t yet know about. As the pace of innovation accelerates, staying one step ahead of the competition — and doing right by your firm’s stakeholders, financially and otherwise — means watching closely for new tech that can speed up your development timelines and reduce overall DevOps costs.
Published First on Due. Read Here.
Featured Image Credit: Photo by Pixabay; Pexels; Thank you!
Eco-Friendly Fleet Maintenance Trends and Strategies
As the world becomes increasingly aware of the impact of climate change, many businesses are seeking ways to mitigate their carbon footprint and embrace more sustainable practices. In the transportation industry, fleet maintenance is a key area where businesses can make significant strides in reducing their environmental impact.
The Big Issues With Today’s Fleet Maintenance
There are several environmental issues associated with today’s fleet maintenance practices. Here are some of the biggest:
Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Fleet vehicles are a significant source of greenhouse gas emissions, contributing to climate change. The emissions from fuel combustion and the use of heavy-duty vehicles can have negative impacts on air quality, water quality, and human health.
Hazardous Waste Disposal
Many fleet maintenance activities generate hazardous waste, such as used oil, solvents, and other chemicals. If not disposed of properly, these can contaminate soil and water, posing a risk to human health and the environment.
Fleet maintenance requires significant resources, including energy, water, and raw materials. The extraction and processing of these resources can have negative impacts on the environment, including habitat destruction, deforestation, and water pollution.
Fleet maintenance activities can be noisy, especially in urban areas. This can have negative impacts on wildlife and human health, contributing to stress and hearing damage.
Land Use and Habitat Destruction
The construction and maintenance of fleet facilities, such as maintenance yards and parking lots, can require significant amounts of land. This can lead to habitat destruction and loss of biodiversity.
Overall, fleet maintenance has significant environmental impacts, and addressing these issues will require a comprehensive approach that includes the adoption of sustainable practices, the use of alternative fuels and technologies, and the implementation of environmentally responsible waste management practices.
7 Eco-Friendly Fleet Maintenance Tips
Aligning a company’s fleet maintenance approach with larger green initiatives and eco-friendly mission statements has never been more practical. Here are several helpful tips and strategies to get you started:
1. Switch to Alternative Fuels
One of the most effective ways to make fleet maintenance more eco-friendly is to switch to alternative fuels. Traditional gasoline and diesel-powered vehicles produce a significant amount of greenhouse gas emissions. Alternative fuels, like electricity, biofuels, and even hydrogen, produce fewer emissions and can help reduce a company’s carbon footprint.
Electric vehicles (EVs) are becoming increasingly popular as a sustainable transportation option. EVs produce zero emissions and are typically much cheaper to maintain than traditional vehicles. Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are also an option, producing only water as a byproduct. Biofuels, which are made from renewable sources like corn and soybeans, can also be used in some vehicles.
2. Use Sustainable Products and Materials
In addition to alternative fuels, businesses can also make fleet maintenance more eco-friendly by using sustainable products and materials. Here are some examples:
Biodegradable cleaning products: Traditional cleaning products can contain chemicals that can be harmful to the environment. Biodegradable cleaning products are a more sustainable alternative as they are made from natural, non-toxic ingredients that break down quickly and safely.
Recycled materials: Using recycled materials, such as oil and tires, can help reduce waste and conserve natural resources. Recycled oil can be re-refined and used again, while recycled tires can be turned into rubberized asphalt, which can be used to pave roads.
Eco-friendly lubricants and fluids: Using eco-friendly lubricants and fluids, such as biodegradable hydraulic fluids and biodegradable grease, can help reduce pollution and protect the environment.
Sustainable packaging: When purchasing products and materials for your fleet maintenance, look for sustainable packaging options, such as products that are shipped in recyclable or biodegradable packaging.
By using sustainable products and materials in fleet maintenance, you can help reduce your environmental footprint and promote sustainability.
3. Conduct Regular Preventive Maintenance
Fleet maintenance software can be a powerful tool for managing preventive maintenance as part of a green fleet management strategy. Here are some steps to help you use fleet maintenance software to perform preventative maintenance:
Set up a preventative maintenance schedule: The first step is to set up a maintenance schedule in your fleet maintenance software. This schedule should include regular maintenance tasks such as oil changes, tire rotations, and other routine maintenance tasks that will help keep your vehicles running efficiently and reduce emissions.
Track vehicle usage: Your fleet maintenance software should be able to track vehicle usage, including mileage, hours of operation, and other relevant data. This information can help you schedule maintenance tasks based on actual use rather than just time intervals, which can help reduce unnecessary maintenance and waste.
Use eco-friendly parts and materials: When performing preventive maintenance, make sure to use eco-friendly parts and materials whenever possible. This can include using recycled oil, eco-friendly tires, and other environmentally friendly products.
Monitor fuel consumption: Your fleet maintenance software should also be able to track fuel consumption for each vehicle in your fleet. By monitoring fuel consumption, you can identify inefficiencies and make adjustments to improve fuel economy, which can help reduce emissions.
Analyze data and adjust your strategy: Finally, use the data collected by your fleet maintenance software to analyze your fleet’s performance and adjust your strategy as needed. For example, if certain vehicles are consistently underperforming or require more frequent maintenance, consider replacing them with more fuel-efficient models.
The good news is that implementing fleet management software into your company’s strategy isn’t nearly as challenging or intensive as you might think. Thanks to artificial intelligence and machine learning, the upfront setup is much faster and more efficient than you may realize. This allows you to get up and running quickly.
4. Implement More Efficient Routing
Efficient routing is another strategy for making fleet maintenance more sustainable. By optimizing routes, businesses can reduce the amount of fuel their vehicles consume and the emissions they produce. This not only helps the environment but can also save the company money on fuel costs.
GPS and fleet management software can help companies optimize their routes and reduce fuel consumption. These tools can provide real-time data on traffic patterns, road closures, and weather conditions, allowing businesses to make informed decisions about their routes.
5. Promote Better Driver Education
Another important aspect of eco-friendly fleet maintenance is promoting driver education. Drivers who are trained in eco-friendly driving techniques can help reduce fuel consumption and emissions. This includes techniques such as reducing idling time, avoiding sudden accelerations and braking, and maintaining a steady speed.
In addition to driver education, businesses can also encourage their drivers to adopt sustainable habits, such as carpooling and using public transportation when possible. This not only reduces the company’s carbon footprint but can also save employees money on commuting costs.
6. Use Telematics Technology
Telematics technology refers to the use of wireless communication systems and GPS technology to transmit data from vehicles to a remote location. This technology allows businesses to track and monitor the performance of their fleet vehicles, including fuel consumption, emissions, speed, and location.
By collecting this data, telematics technology can help businesses optimize their fleet operations to make them more energy-efficient and green. Here are some of the ways that telematics technology can be used to improve fleet sustainability:
Route Optimization: Telematics systems can provide real-time traffic updates, road closures, and weather conditions to help businesses optimize their vehicle routes. By choosing the most efficient route, fleet managers can reduce fuel consumption and emissions while ensuring on-time deliveries.
Fuel Efficiency Monitoring: Telematics technology can track fuel consumption in real-time, giving fleet managers insights into how their vehicles are performing. By identifying patterns of inefficient driving or idling, businesses can take steps to reduce fuel consumption and emissions.
Maintenance Alerts: Telematics technology can also alert businesses when a vehicle is due for maintenance or repairs. By staying on top of maintenance, businesses can ensure that their vehicles are running at peak efficiency.
Driver Behavior Monitoring: Telematics technology can monitor driver behavior, including acceleration, braking, and speed. By identifying patterns of inefficient driving, businesses can provide coaching and training to drivers to help them improve their driving habits.
7. Reduce Vehicle Weight
Reducing the weight of fleet vehicles can also make maintenance more eco-friendly. The heavier a vehicle is, the more fuel it requires to move, which means it will produce more emissions. By reducing the weight of their vehicles, companies can reduce the amount of fuel they consume and the emissions they produce.
This can be achieved by removing unnecessary equipment and cargo from the vehicles, as well as using lightweight materials for vehicle maintenance. For example, aluminum wheels and carbon fiber parts can be used to reduce the weight of the vehicle.
Turn Your Fleet Green
Implementing eco-friendly fleet maintenance practices not only benefits the environment. It can also help businesses save money in the long run. By reducing fuel consumption and emissions, companies can lower their operating costs and improve their reputation as a sustainable business.
Use the tips highlighted above to reorient the way your business approaches fleet maintenance in 2023 and beyond.
Image Credit: by Lê Minh; Pexels; Thanks!
5 Essential Benefits of Choosing an Efficient ERP System
The corporate world is changing at a fast pace, and advanced technologies such as ERP system is at the epicenter of the ongoing digital revolution. Businesses are more dependent on technological tools and enterprise software than ever before. In fact, these tools and software are enabling businesses to drive greater success by enhancing business processes. Are you ensuring that you have the right software and tools to help your business advance swiftly?
There is a plethora of software and solutions to choose from, and each of them comes with its own merits. But what is making a real difference is the integration of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems that can streamline processes across various verticals in an enterprise.
The use of ERP systems defines a new trend altogether in the modern workplace.
Gone are the days when only multinational companies subscribed to ERP solutions for managing processes at the entire enterprise level. Nowadays even small businesses are bridging ERP systems onboard to facilitate business advancement. To validate, as per statistics, the global market size for ERP software is expected to reach USD 96.7 billion by 2024. Finances Online further explains that more than 52 percent of organizations are highly satisfied with the decision of integrating ERP systems.
Probing further, vertical ERP, small business ERP, generalist ERP, and Open Source ERP is among the most common types of ERP software that businesses are integrating. Moreover, it is also notable that most organizations are showing a keen interest in Cloud-Based SasS ERP systems, given the edge they have over traditional ERP.
All in all, the integration of ERP systems has become one of the most sought-after change management activities in the corporate world. The question is, what are the advantages of ERP software that businesses are subscribing to ERP solutions? Let us find out in this blog.
Key benefits of ERP Systems for businesses
1. Massive optimization of productivity
The ultimate objective of every enterprise is to drive the highest productivity across every vertical. However, when your employees work on recurring and repetitive tasks, not only their individual productivity takes a hit, but the efficiency of the entire organization takes a setback. This explains why businesses increasingly spend on automation tools to streamline repetitive tasks like invoicing. Even marketing automation is one of the thriving corporate trends.
All in all, the greater the automation in an enterprise the higher will be the productivity. Having said that, this is where we must look at one of the greatest benefits of integrating ERP systems. To substantiate, ERP systems come with incredible and reliable automation capabilities that can help your organization achieve its business objectives at a greater pace.
Moreover, with AI integrations as per the latest developments, the automation capabilities of ERP systems are much higher than ever before. To substantiate, as per Netsuite, employers are now happily investing in advanced ERP solutions that come with intelligent AI or machine learning capabilities.
Needless to say, artificial intelligence is the way forward for enterprises, and the blend of ERP and AI is worth embracing. This combination will certainly give your business an unparalleled competitive advantage.
2. Real-time analytics
Having timely access to analytics that can help you constantly enhance processes is nothing short of having a competitive advantage. In fact, everything in the modern enterprise world revolves around analytics. From analytics on customer engagement to analytics on inventory management gaps, you need analytics at almost every step.
This is where ERP comes up with another great feature that you should definitely not ignore. An efficient ERP system can generate real-time quantitative analytics that can lead to better planning, execution, and monitoring. Besides, the best part is that with an ERP, you can create data analytics capabilities in your businesses without even having to hire a dedicated team for data analytics.
Moreover, real-time analytics will also ensure that there is a smoother workflow management and will also aid in effective collaboration between teams. Especially if your project teams work remotely, it is essential that there is real-time sharing of data analytics for project success. ERP does not only automate data generation but also data reporting in a presentable and lucid form. However, in the ultimate sense, the positive impact of ERP is subject to the efficiency of your change management process.
3. Greater cost-efficiency in operations
Irrespective of whether you are a budding startup or an established business, operational costs will always be a top concern for you. The correlation is quite simple, the lower the operational costs the higher will be the profitability. Now, the question is, can ERP help you in bringing down operational costs? Well, the answer is a big yes and it is time you acknowledge that.
To validate, as per Datix, ERP solutions can help organizations reduce operational costs by 23 percent. This clearly indicates that you can save a major chunk of operational costs by investing in the best-in-class ERP solution. The sooner you bring ERP onboard, the greater the savings.
4. Magnification of data security
It is a well-known fact that the contemporary corporate world has a massive dependence on big data. Every business process in the modern corporate world has data engineering and analytics at the forefront of things. Data security has become a top concern, especially when cyber-attacks and data breaches are more advanced than ever before.
One of the most compelling reasons why your business needs ERP is the set of advanced data security features. When an ERP is integrated into business processes, you can set controls for accessibility to confidential data. To explain, you can control who can access sensitive information and who cannot.
Otherwise, in the absence of an ERP system, you will have to spend fortunes on cyber security and data security solutions. ERP gives you multidimensional benefits of optimized business processes along with credible data security measures.
5. Enhanced flexibility
Does your organization have a traditional on-site working style or a hybrid working style? Are you planning to move your employees to permanent work from home? ERP gives you great flexibility irrespective of your organization’s working style. Simply put, ERP can be easily integrated even in remote working cultures or hybrid cultures and will also help you to avoid employee burnout (seodiggerz dotcom “help employees avoid burnout). You can implement an ERP system with great ease and put it to work from the word go.
Besides, ERP systems also offer great flexibility in terms of future scalability. If your business is expanding and you want to add more users in the future, ERP systems offer the room to do so. Room to expand has to be the most important feature you should be looking for when you choose an ERP system. Not every ERP system may come with an effective scope of future scalability. Still, you will find a lot of ERP systems that do offer scalability features and you must choose from them.
ERP systems are changing the way businesses approach their operations and key objectives. Besides, ERP is much more than a planning resource and offers immense value in terms of optimizing business processes.
Integrating ERP for your business can be a real game changer. The sooner you subscribe to it, the more advantageous it will prove to be for your business. Make sure you choose an ERP software that is best suited for your enterprise.
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