Fleet management is time-consuming and challenging. You have to control expenses, ensure your drivers’ safety and productivity, and maintain vehicles with minimal errors. It is crucial to increase your fleet efficiency to keep your company’s operations rolling and reduce errors. Read on for six valuable tips to optimize your fleet’s efficiency.
1. Track driver behavior
Although drivers are significant assets in your company, some of their behaviors, including aggressive driving, idling, improper shifting, road rage, and deactivating safety controls, can be a liability. They could lead to expensive vehicle repairs, legal issues, traffic accidents and injuries, and even loss of the business. Tracking and monitoring driver behavior via GPS fleet tracking software helps you identify unsolicited driving patterns and work towards rectifying them. This helps optimize driving performance, and ensure employee safety, increasing fleet efficiency.
2. Minimize the empty miles
Empty miles account for one of the most expensive aspects of running your company. Vehicles do not generate revenue when they deliver products but come back empty, so you need to optimize operations. This could mean partnering with a client to arrange a backhaul opportunity. Alternatively, you could schedule another delivery or pick up close to the initial delivery area to reduce the empty miles.
3. Control fuel consumption
The fuel price is a significant cost-saving challenge for many fleet managers. This is because the fuel costs are ever-changing, so it is difficult to predict the actual expense. However, you could control your fleet’s fuel consumption to reduce fuel costs, improving efficiency. Consider investing in fleet tracking software to gain insights on fuel fraud and theft, excessive idling, aggressive driving, and other aspects that could be leading to increased fuel consumption and address them to minimize fuel costs. You could also offer incentives like mile-per-gallon challenges to build expectations for how much fuel the driver should use per specific trip.
4. Reduce overall fleet expenses
Apart from fuel, other expenses such as marketing, tires, insurance, employee training, leasing or financing vehicles, oil changes, labor expenses, and maintenance impact the company’s efficiency. You need to minimize these expenses to achieve your business’s bottom line. The following are some ways to reduce overall fleet expenses:
- Schedule regular vehicle maintenance to avoid costly, unforeseen repairs
- Provide continuous training and retain and reward good employees to increase productivity and avoid spending more on recruiting new staff
- Use fleet management software to monitor drivers and vehicles to identify problem areas and correct them before they escalate into costly liabilities.
5. Automate data entry
Entering expense data, work orders, and other crucial information in spreadsheets manually can be time-consuming. It also does not provide a comprehensive view of all business operations, making it difficult to use the information in decision-making. Investing in management systems such as GPS fleet tracking allows you to obtain real-time updates from your team and pull the data instantly, eliminating countless hours of data entry from your day.
6. Maintain the right fleet size
If you have some vehicles that are not running, this indicates your fleet is too large, and perhaps you should consider downsizing. Downsizing allows you to cut unnecessary costs and divert the extra cash flow to more productive investments. When the demand for your fleet’s services rises, you could consider leasing or upsize to newer models.
Streamlining processes and operations using minimum resources is the end goal for any business organization. Consider implementing the above strategies to improve fleet efficiency and ensure your company continues to thrive.