How Fleet Managers Can Do More With Less

How Fleet Managers Can Do More With Less

In an ideal world, you would have unlimited resources. There would be no budget, you’d have access to the best technology, and you would be able to hire anyone you want. Unfortunately, that’s probably not the world you live in. You’re likely bound by finite resources. Thus, the challenge becomes doing more with less.

4 Tips for Greater Efficiency

Efficiency is one of the primary responsibilities you have as a fleet manager. If you want to excel in your role and earn the right to even bigger and better job opportunities in the future, you must prove yourself as someone who can optimize efficiency at every stage.

With that in mind, here are several helpful tips for greater efficiency:

1. Use Fleet Management Software

Fleet management software is a game-changer. It takes manual processes that typically require lots of mental effort, calculations, and monitoring and streamlines them via an automated platform that relies on real-time data to make objective decisions. It removes much of the guesswork that’s usually required when making repairs and gives you the ability to make decisions that are based on data.

Another huge benefit of fleet management software is how it digitizes paper processes and centralizes all reports and information into one singular location. This reduces the amount of time that’s wasted searching for files, making copies, faxing documents, etc. Everyone involved can access the same information in real-time from any device that’s connected to the internet.

2. Run the Right Reports

Having access to the right data via a robust fleet management dashboard isn’t enough.  You must know how to use this information accordingly. In other words, it’s all about running the right reports, so that you can analyze them well and make proactive decisions in regards to repairs, maintenance, and driver optimization.

According to Cetaris, which has one of the top fleet maintenance solutions in the industry, there are six essential reports that every fleet manager should set up in order to be successful. One of them is a productivity and efficiency report.

“The productivity score provides a percentage based on how many available hours the employee was working in the shop between the specified dates,” Cetaris explains. “This is determined by adding direct and indirect labor hours together, and dividing the total by the employee’s available hours.”

With an efficiency score in hand, you can compare each employee’s efficiency to industry benchmarks to determine whether or not your team is underperforming, overperforming, or right on track.

Other good reports to run include warranty A/R aging reports, work order detail reports, work order summary by system code, work order summary by reason for repair, and slow moving parts.

3. Train for Better Driving Habits

As you probably know, fuel costs typically account for a fleet’s largest expense. Thus, it makes sense that you should constantly look for ways to optimize fuel efficiency and reduce costs.

One simple way to reduce fuel costs is by correcting poor driving behavior. This includes things like keeping a driver’s speed in the normal/legal range, limiting the idling of vehicles, and training drivers not to brake or accelerate harshly. Doing this can reduce fleet fuel costs by as much as 15 percent, which may equal a savings of thousands of dollars per month.

4. Spend Intelligently

One of the more critical components of fleet management is spend optimization. Intelligent spending can dramatically improve your bottom line and place you in the good graces of company executives.

Spending intelligently requires you to think about every aspect of your department, including vehicle and equipment purchases, leases versus purchases, price comparisons, financing rates, taxes, incentives, and more. (Again, having the right fleet management software makes this much easier to manage.)

Learn to Do More With Less

Efficiency is about doing more with less. Efficient processes are able to generate more output with less input.

As a fleet manager, that’s your goal. Whatever your inputs are, try to squeeze more output out of them. If you approach every task, process, and challenge with this in mind, your fleet will always perform well, and you’ll never have a shortage of professional opportunities.