Businesses that deal with fleet management rely on high-performing drivers, regular maintenance, strategic route planning, effective budgeting, and much more. However, getting all of this correct isn’t always easy, especially when fleet managers are contending with the daily grind of business. Fortunately, by making a few simple changes to processes, fleet management will feel easier, and the associated costs will start to drop.
Effective Tracking Systems
Data collection is the only way to find out which areas of your fleet are costing the most, therefore allowing you to make informed changes. To get started, you’ll need to implement fleet management software from one of the best telematics providers, which will enable you to track the following:
- Driver performance: Record any accident details to help investigate and improve.
- Certifications: Track expired licensing and documentation.
- Fuel usage: Filling dates, cost, quality, and fuel type.
- Purchasing and leasing: Warranty and contract details for all vehicles.
- Maintenance: Records of any works/inspections carried out on vehicles.
- Usage records: Who signed the vehicle out, when, what purpose, mileage needs, and odometer recordings?
Purchasing new cars for your business will be an enormous investment and one that you’ll likely try to reduce by shopping around. However, if you put together a list of purchasing criteria, you’ll guarantee quality every time and it will be cheaper. The requirements can look something like this:
- Fuel rating guidelines
- Low operating costs
- Readily available parts
- Relevant features to your business
- A set load-carrying capacity
If you under-match a new vehicle against your list, it most likely won’t get used to it because it won’t cope with daily tasks. Over-match a new vehicle and it will complete all tasks while costing a fortune.
Prevention is always cheaper than the cure, and that’s especially true when it comes to vehicles. If problems are ignored, they lead to much more expensive issues. Therefore, you should put more time and energy into preventive maintenance, which will be cheaper in the long run.
If you allow your team to choose their own vehicle, you’ll never have an even spread because people will have favorites, or they may prefer newer vehicles. Therefore, distribute usage across your fleet, and assign trucks on a rotation basis. Doing this will allow you to manage maintenance more effectively.
There’s no point in having too many vehicles in your fleet because it will just stretch your budget. Whereas, not having enough vehicles will prevent you from performing daily tasks. Therefore, it’s important to get the balance right. When you need vehicles to cover busy periods, you can always consider rentals.
There are countless mundane admin tasks involved in fleet management, and they draw time away from more important business. However, thanks to innovative technology, the majority of menial tasks can be automated, which leaves you free to strengthen relationships and improve the business.
Improving fleet management is about finding ways to work smarter, which reduces outgoings and makes life easier for everyone.