Your customers need their products or services delivered in a timely manner. Proper fleet management is the key maintaining a productive and efficient business operation. As a fleet manager, it is important that you have all the necessary systems in place.
Your fleet is an asset, and you want to slow its depreciation as much as possible. This means having a functioning maintenance schedule for every vehicle. Regular preventative maintenance is key to avoiding unnecessary and costly repairs, particularly on vehicles that are expected to continually idle or tow and those that consistently drive off-road or at low speeds. All safety features, mechanical parts, and body surfaces should be examined at scheduled intervals. The idea is to increase the frequency of low-cost scheduled servicing, and thus decrease the frequency of expensive unscheduled repairs that result from damage. The following should be included in your preventative maintenance program:
- Checklist and schedule for each component or system
- Record of driver comments or concerns
- Qualified mechanics
- Detailed history of all services performed
To protect you, your drivers, and your business, you need to make sure your fleet is legally authorized and financially secure. Obviously, want to finance with quality lenders and rates that you can afford. Moreover, just like with your preventative maintenance schedule, you should maintain active insurance coverage and registration.
Too many fleet managers try to cut costs by hiring inexperienced drivers or by neglecting to properly train a current workforce. This really slows down operation, as novice drivers may be unfamiliar with the area or may fail to use their time efficiently. Poor decisions often lead to accidents, moving violations, and other incidents that cost more time and money than would a proper training course.
Vehicle tracking system, such as those offered through Verizon’s Network Fleet would undoubtedly become your most valuable resource. With the use of GPS technology, managers have the ability to track the precise location and the exact speed of each of their vehicles. Moreover, GPS can now be accessed wirelessly. This makes it even easier to keep constant tabs on productivity. Advanced tracking features can take information about a vehicle’s location to calculate speed and distance. Management software can then analyze this data and effectively monitor and manage nearly every major aspect of your fleet:
- Driver habits, efficiency, and safety
- Scheduling and routing
- Administrative functions
- Preventative maintenance schedule
- Theft deterrence
By allowing technology to perform these functions, you streamline your productivity and lower your overall expenses by reducing the number of unscheduled costs. Tracking programs identify where you need to make improvements in training, fuel consumption, and on-time delivery methods, leading to improved customer service and ongoing business.