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Garmin: More than a Navigator, a business solution

By December 7, 2009No Comments

The Garmin portable navigation device.


Whether you own a fleet of trucks, taxi cabs or delivery vans, the Garmin GPS navigator, available at the Jamaica Automobile Association (JAA), a subsidiary of Jamaica National Building Society (JNBS), can improve the efficiency of your business.Supported by the JAMNAV database created by JAA’s partner, the Mona GeoInformatics Institute at The University of the West Indies, mapping the best routes to get to your destination with a Garmin portable navigation device can save fuel, cost and time and put you ahead of the game. JAMNAV is an on-screen, real-time digital map that carries all major Jamaican highways, arterial and residential roads among other features.

“It’s a great product,” says Orville Hedge who bought one for use in his trucking service. Mr. Hedge uses his truck to provide service for his own grocery business; but, also does delivery for other businesses, including a pharmaceutical company. His work often takes him into rural Jamaica. “It helps me to get to where I need to go on time and I’m never lost or late,” he explains.

Garmin uses the global positioning system (GPS), which is a satellite navigational device. It utilizes microwaves from satellites orbiting in space to co-ordinate locations. The signals are fed to a base that determines the location of the unit using the Garmin device, its speed and time.

JAMNAV is able to store up to 69 categories of major destinations. It supports the Garmin GPS technology through its digital mapping system, which makes it possible to give turn by turn directions to the driver.

“There are several places loaded on the maps provided by JAMNAV,” explains Emile Spence, JNBS Executive in charge of the JAA. “The maps locate all police stations, hospitals, and several restaurants, among other businesses; therefore, it’s very comprehensive.”

The device is able to “call out road names” to direct drivers from their current location to where they wish to go. The driver can set the system to automatically select the shortest route or choose alternate routes from the default setting.

Garmin’s navigational capability also makes it a useful tool to manage large fleets.

In fact, JAMNAV provides a solution specifically for businesses wishing to use the Garmin device for commercial purposes.


Dr. Parris Lyew-Ayee (left), Director of the Mona GeoInformatics Institute, demonstrates features of the Garmin navigational system to Earl Jarrett, General Manager of Jamaica National Building Society.


“It’s called JAMNAV Corporate and that system allows you to have an exclusive map with your clients on your device,” explains Dr. Parris Lyew- Ayee Jr., Director of the Mona GeoInformatics Institute.The product allows businesses to upload the names or account numbers of their clients to the electronic map, so that locations can be easily identified. Pictures and logos of the actual business can also be added to the map using the JAMNAV Extras application, providing the driver with the precise address.

“You might say that your driver already knows where to find the place, but what if he is a new driver?” underscores Dr. Lyew- Ayee. “It can direct him to the exact location saving the business fuel and time should the driver becomes lost, en route to the location.”

Garmin is able to give the exact distance and time it will take to reach specified locations, allowing the operator to accurately draft a travel budget. In addition, it helps the business operator to plan the continuity route for his deliveries, deciding which client will receive delivery first and which one will be the last.

One can also communicate with drivers through hybridized tracking and navigation systems including text messaging that can be sent to the device, which is immediately displayed on the unit. Garmin gives confirmation on whether a message has been read and gives the driver the option to quickly respond, if necessary.

The business operator can monitor deliveries as Garmin provides status updates about the progress of deliveries, whether the driver is en route to the next location, and when he arrives at the destination, as well as confirming when the job is completed.

“It also helps with dispatch,” says Dr. Lyew- Ayee. “As you are able to ascertain from the data how long it will take for a delivery to be made; and, therefore, how many deliveries can be made in a given day.”

Garmin is one of the world’s leading brands in GPS navigation and portable navigation devices, producing a wide range of units for the automotive, marine, aviation and fitness industries. JAA is Jamaica’s sole distributor of Garmin navigational devices which is available from its offices at 7 Central Avenue in St. Andrew.

JAMNAV has been endorsed by the Jamaica Tourist Board and the Institute of Electrical & Electronic Engineers.