The safety and productivity of vehicles and drivers are key to realizing a company’s service goals and sales. This calls for management that considers every aspect of the fleet.
That means you need to consider everything, from purchasing vehicles, organizing their operation, and communicating with drivers. Otherwise, you may let important things slip through the cracks, which can be detrimental to your business. It may end up costing the business money, wasting valuable time, and frustrating you.
Read on to learn six fleet management tips to help you manage your fleet effectively and keep it in top shape.
1. Preventive Maintenance to Save On Fleet Management Costs
If you can maintain your vehicles properly, you’ll avoid unplanned repairs and wasting time. Preventative maintenance includes changing oils, inspecting and rotating tires, and inspecting the vehicle for overall safety.
Regular oil changes at set intervals after a vehicle travels a certain mileage are effective measures for avoiding wastage, but more is required. Rotating tires regularly and general vehicle inspection is also essential. Remember, during these checks, the vehicles undergo a thorough scan all over, including the tire pressure and fluid levels.
Preventive maintenance helps you prevent problems that may cost you much more to restore a vehicle to its previous good condition. That way, your fleet runs smoother and you can better realize the profits from work orders.
2. Consider Vehicle Specs
Before purchasing a vehicle to replace the one you’ve disposed of, it’s a good idea to consider all the demands the vehicle should fulfill. By taking your time to explain the vehicle’s intended use, you cut on costs long-term.
If you invest in an under-specified vehicle, for instance, one that doesn’t fit your usage or the loads you carry, it may be detrimental later on. The vehicle may require a lot of maintenance, costing you a lot of money in the long run.
Similarly, avoid utilizing over-specified vehicles. Otherwise, you’ll increase costs unnecessarily.
Therefore, a vital consideration in how to manage a fleet of vehicles is to avoid getting the wrong replacement vehicle, make sure to specify vehicles based on factors such as their operating conditions, usage, and type of load being transported.
3. Monitor Your Total Cost of Ownership Closely
As an automobile gets older, its maintenance costs usually start to increase, something you need to pay close attention to. Additionally, understand what the manufacturer’s warranty covers, to what extent, and the impact on your total ownership cost.
A very effective way to retain a cost-effective fleet is by keeping yourself informed on the asset’s residual value, market trends in used vehicles, and the right time to make a sale or dispose of a vehicle.
4. Regular Checks on Tire Pressure
Tire pressure is very important as it contributes to the safety of your driver and the vehicle itself.
The question is, how often do you check your tire pressure.
Often people overlook this vital aspect of vehicle maintenance, but the impact of doing so is bigger than you think.
You see tire pressure and air temperature acting on tire pressure affect tire wear, fuel mileage, and overall vehicle handling. Therefore, to ensure your vehicle and driver are safe all seasons, cultivate and instill in your team the culture of checking tire pressure regularly.
5. Explain the Company Policy to Your Drivers
Have you clearly outlined the policies that govern the operation of your fleet? If so, you’re on the right path, but more is required. It’s best to communicate the same to your drivers, making them aware of their responsibilities too.
Inform them of your organization’s preventive maintenance schedules, driver policies such as driver safety, hours of use, and driver-required level of customer service, and maintenance policies.
In addition, it should be clear that there will be repercussions for going against the company’s policy. In fact, any aftermath of their actions is solely their responsibility.
Every successful fleet has a clear policy that guides everyone and must be followed to the letter.
6. Create a Strong Relationship With Your Fleet Maintenance Service Provider
Fleet maintenance providers are key players in the success of your fleet. They’re the people you turn to any time a vehicle has an issue requiring their input.
For example, your vehicle may run into an issue during repair that may require intervention from your fleet maintenance provider. In such a case, don’t hesitate to notify them as they’ll assist in the repair.
With a healthy and successful partnership with your fleet maintenance provider, you’ll improve your customers’ satisfaction, optimize productivity, and reduce downtime.
Although fleets vary from one organization to another, there’s a common goal when it comes to how to manage fleet vehicles—to reduce costs, improve efficiency and safety, increase productivity, and increase customer satisfaction. By implementing the fleet management tips mentioned above, you’re well on the way to maintaining a top-notch fleet that delivers the most value to your business.