For a business that preaches the need for speed, the trucking business seems to run into processes with the potential to keep trucks idling at every turn. Handling expenses for cost drivers incur on the road alone is a daunting task for any finance team — fuel, truck repairs, towing, parking, truck washes, loading and unloading fees.
And as is the case in many B2B payments, all those things traditionally have been very paper-based difficult for truckers to complete because vendors that support the ecosystem generally don’t have a point-of-sale capability that allows them to easily invoice and take payments. The result is often a waiting game of phone calls, lost receipts and other hassles.
But an emerging segment of the FinTech sector has set about tackling those obstacles, freeing fleet managers from tedium and inefficiency with solutions tailor made to address challenges that are unique to the business. PYMNTS has reported several recent innovations in fleet payments and other digitization solutions which serve as examples of the general trends toward digitization and automation in the field. Their goals include:
- Saving time and money.
- Eliminating the hassle of matching up receipts to trips.
- Using company funds at preferred vendors like truck stops and car washes.
B2B payment platforms are seizing the opportunity to breach this gap.
Edenred, Visa Launch Commercial Card
The specific-purpose payment solutions firm is collaborating with Visa to introduce a commercial card solution for fleet management expenses. Edenred Essentials is a Visa commercial card specifically for fuel, electric vehicle (EV) charges and vehicle expenses, according to a Monday (Aug. 8) press release.
Edenred Essentials offers real-time information and seamless controls to support daily payment needs for fleet management — fuel, EV charging, in-store purchases, vehicle registration, tolling, car washes, maintenance and more, per the release. The solution is designed to save time when it comes to fleet management while also helping to boost productivity, particularly for small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs). There’s also a cashback rewards program that works through a partnership with thousands of gas stations nationwide.
RoadSync Automates Everyday Expenses
The routine expense automation companyrecently launched a direct payment solution that lessens the burden on the driver by streamlining the transaction between the broker/carrier and the warehouse merchant. The company has a network of vendors that already use its platform to accept payments, and brokers and carriers ask for ways to make the process easier.
With the new direct payment solution, RoadSync plugged its spend management platform to its mobile point of sale platform. When drivers go into a RoadSync merchant location, they simply enter their cellphone number. The system recognizing whether they have a preauthorized payment in the system and will let them complete it with a click. Transaction data including a receipt are automatically fed back to the payer.
The solution also serves as a companion product to those of fuel card companies because the user can bolt RoadSync’s spend management platform onto other products to automate fleet check payments with an extra layer of fraud protection.
Car IQ, Sunoco Offer Automatic Payments
The Car IQ feet payment solutions platform recently formed a partnership with Sunoco that will allow secure fuel payments without a physical credit card using autonomous fleet payments. The initiative will be rolled out at almost 5,000 Sunoco locations across the U.S. by the end of the summer. The partnership gives fleet customers more choice when it comes to purchasing fuel.
Such vehicle-based payments solutions are reshaping how companies manage their business operations by tying vehicle data directly to the transaction and allowing the car to connect directly to the pump, giving fleet managers more control and visibility over their budget, simplifying how fleets pay when they fuel up.
In addition, the solution helps fleet managers customers eliminate fraud with the use of telematics data that validates each fuel transaction. The goal is a payment ecosystem that will provide fleet managers more control and visibility into their fleet spend.
Car IQ has partnered with variety of service providers, including car washes.
These examples show a virtuous trend — FinTechs not only working unilaterally to solve B2B payment and other digitization challenges, but collaborating to do so. As in all IT endeavors, reinventing the wheel is inefficient and effective. Cooperation among FinTechs will expedite innovation and help accelerate the fleet management into the connected economy. Other players in the space include ComData, CloudTrucks, Fleetcor and P97.