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4 Tips For Running a More Efficient Fleet

4 Tips For Running a More Efficient Fleet

There’s a big difference between running a fleet and running an efficient fleet. It’s not that it requires much more effort or know how; rather that it takes a different, more holistic approach. For this reason, the majority of companies are still running fleets in extremely inefficient ways, effectively pouring their hard earned time and money down the drain.

To run an efficient fleet, businesses and fleet managers must take a step back from individual and problem-led practices, and engage in preemptive action, dedicated management, and data gathering and crunching.

With that in mind, here are four of the best tips to help you start running a more efficient fleet today.

1. Accident & Downtime Prevention

It’s inevitable that drivers will encounter problems when out on the road. There are simply too many distractions and safety hazards to prevent them all from occurring.

Many companies just play their luck and wait until something happens — a near miss, an accident, a bid-losing breakdown — to act. But if you think ahead and put the measures in place to reduce the chances of problems arising in the first place, then whatever the outcome may be, it will be a lot less costly and disruptive.

There’s a few ways you can do this. For example, by investing in a high-quality in-cab camera that will help manage any accident and insurance troubles, ensuring all your staff have hands-free devices and making use of driver behaviour monitoring apps.

2. Maintenance management

Keeping on top of a vehicle's servicing and maintenance is an inconvenience at the best of times. The fact of the matter is, people are too busy and don’t have time for it, and they’re certainly not going to do it on their own time.

To get a handle on routine vehicle services and maintenance, it needs to be as easy and effortless as possible. You could be inventive with your methods and use whiteboards or a filing system, or better yet, outsource the whole job to a specialist fleet management company.

3. Fleet guidelines

It’s so easy to lease a fleet today, that without a strict set of guidelines for purchasing and selling, companies can quickly realise they've acquired too many vehicles or hanged on to them for too long.

To prevent this from happening, it’s best to have a fully trained and dedicated fleet manager. If this isn’t possible, at the very least you should take the time to spec out the ideal vehicles you require and create a solid purchasing plan. In this way, you will get insight into the right acquisitions to make and the right time/mileage for selling.

4. Data measuring

Today, data is the place where money is to be saved and thus made. But if you can’t do anything useful with the numbers, then no matter how much data you have, it's meaningless.

In order to make the most out of your data, you need to make sure you know how to measure, compare, and improve. First an foremost, this means getting familiar with the actual metrics you need to measure, as well as establishing proper baselines. A few metrics that form the basis of any good vehicle and fleet performance plan include cost per mile, total cost trend, and operating cost summary.