Of late, there has been a positive shift in fleet risk management, due to the growing need to minimise fleet costs related to accidents, maintenance and global fuel trends. And in order to do so, more and more businesses are opting for the most effective fleet management practices.
Speaking of fuel trends, although gas prices are quite dynamic, and are difficult to predict due to their dependence on global supply and demand, regular monitoring of their usage can help to understand the consumption trend within the fleet. Therefore, fuel management is imperative to businesses opting to take up best practices in fleet management for cost control. However, a 360-degree approach to fleet management will require considering various other factors.
Fleet management best practices
Fleet management for commercial motor vehicles or private vehicles can include a broad range of functions such as vehicle maintenance, vehicle telematics (tracking & diagnostics), driver behaviour management, operational costs management as well as safety and security management.
Here we list down top 5 fleet management best practices that are proven to help the bottom line and streamline operations.
1. Implementing a fleet maintenance program:
One of the biggest challenges for fleet managers, is to schedule routine vehicle servicing and maintenance. And with a bigger fleet, the maintenance procedures could end up being more complex and time consuming. A cloud-based fleet maintenance program can make use of integrated hardware and software to perform advanced diagnostics and automate vehicle inspection, scheduling and issue reporting.
2.Management by measurement:
The key is to measure everything that is related to operations. KPIs and other performance metrics could be essential to determine progress of a fleet through job roles, but it isn’t measuring anything useful. In other words, no progress in productivity of a fleet could have deeper reasons than just manpower activity or performance. Telematics and fleet management software work together towards identifying key performance determinants of a fleet and generate data for regular monitoring of fuel, engine issues, driver behaviour, vehicle usage etc. Further actions can be taken by analysing such reports and applying measures to improve fleet performance.
3. Driver behaviour management:
It all starts with the one behind the wheel, when implementing best fleet practices. From excessive fuel consumption to high accident costs, poor driving habits such as speeding, idling, harsh braking, sharp cornering can degrade a fleet’s performance to incredible levels. Drivers must be encouraged to practice good and safer driving habits by instilling a sense of responsible driving behaviour tied to rewarding incentive programs.
4. Resource and costs tracking:
It is important to know your fleet right from acquiring it to when it’s been on the road. Fleet goals are achievable by continuous monitoring and improving. Routine checks on fleets and the tasks they perform will help to determine if resources are being properly utilised and optimised for achieving operational goals. A telematics integrated fleet management program is cost effective and helps fleet managers to view and analyse daily operational data to communicate the reports to drivers, technicians and supervisors. This reduces manual checks and errors with increased accountability.
5. Upgrade fleet operations with digitisation:
With constant disruption and innovation, every other industry is taking advantage of automation. What can you do to stay ahead? Explore IoT based innovative technologies for your fleet, know about the recent trends in GPS vehicle tracking, participate in disruptive tech conferences and educate teams to do the same. Faster business decisions are made with collaborations and when you’re equipped with recent know-hows it is easier to implement operational changes.
Fleet risks will surface periodically irrespective of fleet size and operation, but with the help of proper implementation of best practices , they can be minimised.