The Challenge

Let’s say you manage a fleet division with 1,000 vehicles and equipment valued at around $60M. Your annual budget is $10M. You provide a traditional set of fleet management services, many of which are listed below.

Your mission is to create a comprehensive fleet management program which responsively fulfills the vehicle and equipment needs of your customers through cost-effective and dedicated personal service.

Your challenge is to connect all your services, people, assets and accounting in an efficient program; however, you are not willing to spend $2,500 per person per year on a PeopleSoft, SAP, Oracle type solution. Doing so limits you on how many people can use the system. This expense also limits the services you can provide within a limited budget.

The question is: Can you achieve your mission and vision using open source ERP for fleet management (Open Source Fleet Management FMS or Open Source Maintenance Management MMS)? This document attempts to evaluate ADempiere and iDempiere, Open Source ERP, against common fleet management requirements.

Big Picture

There are five activities that are critical to fleet management:

  1. Historical records – what happened by whom, when and was it on time?
  2. Planning records – what is supposed to happen in the future by whom and when (example: scheduled maintenance)?
  3. Absorption activities – what activities occurred that offset period end labor and overhead costs?
  4. Materials and resource management – what materials were consumed and need to be replenished (example: bolts, oil, etc…)? Who performed the maintenance at what cost?
  5. Insight – What insight can you gain? What is the TCO of a given asset? Will we save money by using synthetic oil?

It is important to note that ADempiere is not an off-the-shelf fleet management solution; however, you can elegantly use ADempiere or iDempiere to solve common fleet management challenges. It is also worth mentioning that many of the general ERP features in ADempiere support ancillary activities not found in vertical market fleet solutions. Examples of these general features include materials and warehouse management, fleet rental and sales abilities, project based accounting, document management, support ticketing, and high-volume order management and procurement among others.

Contact me if you want to learn more about using ADempiere or iDempiere for fleet management.

ADempiere and iDempiere Details

What makes ADempiere a good candidate for fleet management is its asset management integration with ADempiere’s product capabilities. Almost anything that you can do with a product, you can do with an asset (buy, store, revalue, move, enhance, decompose, sell, destroy, etc…).

This section itemizes many of the activities associated with fleet management. After each section follows an ADempiere and iDempiere discussion that maps ADempiere features to fleet management challenges.

Fleet Engineering Services

  1. Equipment replacement planning
  2. Specification development
  3. Equipment acquisition
  4. Equipment Retirement/Sales
  5. Operator training (new equipment)
  6. Research and development
  7. Alternative fuels program

ADempiere and iDempiere Solution:

    • Asset management – request, order, receive, track and dispose of assets.
    • Document management – route approvals and documents to the correct roles to ensure order and record accuracy
    • Web Integration and Order Management – equipment sales and retirement
    • Document Management – develop training materials and save training records

Fleet Management Services

  1. Policy development
  2. Fleet consultation/advice
  3. Information services
  4. Administrative (e.g., permits, licensing, fuel system)
  5. Long-term leasing Alternative fuel compliance

ADempiere and iDempiere Solution:

    • Document Management – publish policy documents
    • Resource Allocations – schedule and deliver consultation
    • Dashboard Reporting – provide current information to the relevant roles

Preventative Maintenance Services

  1. Lubrication/oil and fluid change
  2. Emission inspections
  3. Compliance inspections
  4. Equipment Inspection

ADempiere and iDempiere Solution:

    • Requests – schedule future maintenance
    • Document Management – record audit records such as services, inspections, calibration
    • Maintenance Orders – absorb activity based materials, labor and overhead against future costs.
    • Order Management – charge customers for services (inspections, fueling, and maintenance)
    • Asset Management – track and report TCO of assets at the document and general ledger levels

Equipment Repair Services

  1. In-shop repairs – scheduled/unscheduled/emergency
  2. Field repairs – scheduled/unscheduled/emergency
  3. Warranty service
  4. Modifications to equipment
  5. Welding
  6. 24/7 Emergency response

ADempiere and iDempiere Solution:

    • Resource Assignment – manage people, bays, equipment, facilities, and time
    • Requests – manage the lifecycle support tickets for scheduled, unscheduled and emergency repairs. Report on the TCO for all assets.
    • Project Management – track expenses and revenue to a specific project. Close the project to create a new asset.
    • Manufacturing – manage the production of commonly created goods using bills of materials and activity based routing.

Equipment Support Services

  1. Dispatch for equipment rentals
  2. Accident investigations
  3. Failure analysis
  4. Vehicle towing
  5. Equipment cleaning
  6. Operator training (fleet equipment)
  7. Auto Parts Warehousing
  8. Fuel Island Services
  9. Fueling service (onsite/offsite)
  10. Tire Repair/Replacement Services (onsite/offsite)

ADempiere and iDempiere Solution:

    • Order Management – schedule and record equipment rental/sales and fueling sales/services
    • Document Management – log accidents, record failure analysis, search for all previous audit records.
    • Product Management – Record services like cleaning schedules and activities.
    • Warehouse Management – receive, store, count, move, replenish, consume, ship parts.

If you would like to learn more about ADempiere’s or iDempiere’s ability to support fleet management, contact me to schedule a demo.


Please note that ADempiere, iDempiere and Openbravo are forks or copies from Compiere. Therefore, they have similar abilities mentioned above. The biggest difference is that ADempiere and iDempiere are pure open source. There are no features held behind a commercial or paid license.

About Chuck Boecking: I am an ERP educator. I believe that open source ERP have achieved mainstream capabilities, and as a result, more companies can create greater efficiency across their organization. I started using the iDempiere code base in 2003. Back then, it was called Compiere. In 2006, I started my first multi-million dollar installation. Since then, ADempiere has helped me create great success with distribution and manufacturing companies all over the world. My vision of success is to find companies that can best use open source ERP to help them achieve a single, global instance that drives a discontinuous increase in profitability. I believe that organizations win when they own their technology.

If you have questions, comments or concerns, let me know. I definitely want your feedback.

You can contact me by phone using 512.850.6068.

My email is chuck@chuboe.com.

You can complete the form on this page.

Thank you for taking the time. I look forward to speaking with you.

Chuck Boecking



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