We often think twice when we want to print an email to save paper and trees, but we should think much more about producing data for clients and customers. The production of this data, also known as 'big data', costs companies tens of thousands of euros.
The tender often contains a requirement for supplying data to clients or governments and since in many cases the execution of this tender is referred to subcontractors, the requirement to supply data is also passed on to the small taxi companies that are commissioned by transport directors carry out the transport.
Calculating useless data costs many tens of thousands of euros.
There are many simple examples of waste of money, but the most important one is perhaps the obligation to indicate when a taxi comes to the customer. This ETA as this time is called, better known as Estimated Time Arrival, is determined based on the location of the vehicle in relation to the customer's home address.
To make this calculation properly, software packages such as Pitane Mobility, use real-time traffic information and road navigation techniques. Based on these two basic elements, we can safely deliver a good ETA. After calculation, this data is sent via an 'external link' to the client who subsequently does nothing with it in 99.9% of the cases, except for storing it in his database.
This may sound illogical, but when 30 cars from a taxi company are on the road for the same client, we do the same trick 30 times per minute because we receive a position update of the car per minute. It would have been better and cheaper to only send the position of the vehicle to the client and let the client make this calculation in his software system in the 0.1% of the cases when the ETA is actually requested.
Costs are often underestimated, but Google and TomTom invoices speak for themselves
Do not underestimate the total costs of these calculations, regardless of the cost of purchasing the real-time data, these calculations are often performed in data centers and we now know that these cloud servers are not free either.
In addition, there is also the 'sour' reality that many clients are not even able to process the supplied data in real time, because their own systems run into all kinds of limitations and the data flow per minute cannot even be processed, creating queues. Due to the creation of these queues in the processing of the data, the information and therefore also the ETA is already outdated when it is stored in the clients' database.
Our advice is therefore to investigate urgently what the real-time data is used for and to minimize costs at the transport companies. Considering carefully where the calculation takes place and what the data is used for is probably the basis for a 'better' tender.
After all, everyone wants to earn something in the sector!