Over 5% of the vehicles purchased each year end up in a fleet. This totals millions of vehicles that get used for commercial purposes. Unlike your personal car, these vehicles get significantly heavier use and require more effort when managing commercial vehicles.
Avoid these six errors with fleet management to improve your fleet’s operation.
1. Failing to Make a Strategy
Failing to establish a measurable fleet management strategy will set you up for failure. You need to be able to track your fleet performance. Without any quantifiable metrics, you don’t know what is succeeding and what is failing.
Problems or mistakes will go unnoticed, leading them to develop into bigger problems. There’s also no way to hold anyone accountable. This leads to excessive waste, higher turnover, and reduced vehicle timelines.
Include measurable metrics in your strategy that you can track. Then use the tracked data to pivot and adjust your strategy over time.
2. The Manual Approach
The management of the fleet is your responsibility. However, that doesn’t mean you need to manually do everything yourself. This reduces productivity and doesn’t utilize your team effectively.
Implement the use of fleet management software to automate repetitive processes. This takes the bulk of the manual tasks off your plate. It can also reduce the risk of human error and give you real-time reporting.
3. Lacking Driver Accountability
It doesn’t matter how well you manage the fleet; if your drivers aren’t held accountable, you won’t have control over the fleet. Promote smart driving habits that reduce fuel use and wear and tear on your vehicles. In addition to a driver training program, install monitoring devices on each of your vehicles.
Reinforce that your drivers should avoid these actions:
- Aggressive driving
- Fast acceleration
- Sudden and hard braking
- Long idle times
- Noneficient shifting
4. Unbalanced Vehicle Use
Without fleet tracking software, you can’t accurately track the usage of your vehicles. This results in you using one vehicle more than another. One vehicle will have significantly higher fleet vehicle fuel and maintenance costs.
You can’t accurately plan for vehicle repairs and replacement when you can’t track their usage. This could result in you unexpectedly replacing multiple vehicles in a single year.
Delivery companies like Conklin Oil & Propane place their vehicles on a rotating schedule. This ensures that each vehicle gets used evenly and receives the necessary maintenance. That way, they can have a measurable plan for the long-term use and replacement of their vehicles.
5. Failure to Track Changes
No market or industry is stagnant, so as a fleet manager, you need to constantly keep an eye on changing conditions. This could be new regulations affecting your drivers or changing industry best practices.
Avoid These Errors With Fleet Management
If you manage a fleet of vehicles, you need to avoid these errors with fleet management. Otherwise, you’ll find your fleet costs rising from waste and reduced vehicle useful life. This gives you a cost-prohibitive fleet management budget to even have a fleet due to the unnecessary financial strain it places on your business.
Check out our other business articles for more helpful advice on managing the different areas of your business.