Common Problems Fleet Managers Face
Stepping into a role as a fleet manager is not one many take lightly. Fleet managers take on weight-bearing responsibilities that are vital to the operations and overall success of a company.
Some corporations firmly rely on their fleets to help keep the doors of their business open. But when fleets play a significant role in the systems and processes of a company, it’s not cheap!
Often times, the cost of operating fleets becomes one of the greatest expenses companies face.
The Importance of Fleet Management
Getting fleets from A to B doesn’t happen overnight. It takes proper management, coordination, and organization to ensure that fleets remain up to par to get the job done safely and efficiently.
And none of this can happen without fleet managers stepping up and executing in their role.
Fleet managers see the bigger picture, anticipating changes in the industry and providing direction for responding to the changes. Their priority is to keep vehicles maintained, provide services on time and under budget, and ensure that customers are satisfied at the end of the day.
Problems fleet managers face
Fleet managers have a tough, yet invaluable job that is necessary for certain businesses to be successful.
Every year, fleet managers are tasked with finding new ways to improve the order and function of current business operations to combat the existing problems at hand.
But, with more responsibility comes more opportunity for problems to arise.
Key issues that fleet managers face include:
- Managing costs
- Visibility and location of vehicles
- Productivity challenges
- Routing schedules
- Driver safety
- Driver behavior
- Driver communication
There’s a reason why we led with managing costs. Like with any good business model, the goal to reduce costs while improving efficiency and profitability is key. And many times it’s up to fleet managers to help provide solutions to make this happen.
Fleet Managers are faced with various costs when dealing with their individual fleet needs. Having to balance, acquisition costs, repairs, maintenance, fuel, and indirect overhead costs across an entire fleet of vehicles is a bear for anyone. Fleet coordination specialists across the globe are looking for ways to not only cut costs, but eliminate inefficiencies.
So, where do you start? Many businesses are now “going digital” and choosing automated processes (or digitisation) as a cost-effective solution that not only saves time and money but also helps with safety and efficiency—ultimately helping with every problem that fleet managers face every day.
What is Digitisation?
There’s a reason why our world has become so dependent on technology. Business owners (and the average person) are consistently looking for better, faster, and stronger solutions to their problems.
The digital landscape and technology advancements make finding solutions to those problems easier and more readily accessible. The same goes for fleet management.
There are now digital fleet solutions, or fleet management software (FMS), that take the second-guessing out of managing fleets. You can find a list of the top eight for 2019 here.
Rather than manually performing tasks like scheduling, tracking fleets, and staying up with vehicle maintenance, digitisation can simplify your workload and provide the data you need to improve safety, communication, and performance.
According to one study, digitisation may even “reduce the risk of human error, ensure time efficiency, and keep expenses low.”
Fleet digitisation is used for:
- Scheduling and route planning
- Visibility, tracking, and road safety
- Communication with drivers
When these three factors are managed well, you can expect to save more time and money (especially in fuel costs and maintenance), and ultimately see a rise in your company’s profitability.
1. Scheduling and route planning
As a fleet manager, keeping your fleets safe, on time, and on budget is of top priority. Fleet management systems can make a night and day difference in your job—literally. These systems help determine what driver is best for the job and identify the best route to get the job done.
National Express Transit states that the data fleet management systems collect can help “optimize routes, maximize driver journey, and make necessary dispatch adjustments on the fly.”
2. Visibility, tracking, and road safety
Knowing where your vehicles are and the progress they’ve made is vital in fleet management. One way companies have improved visibility and tracking is through GPS-powered FMS.
GPS systems use real-time tracking for vehicles, so you can know your vehicles’ exact location and ensure your drivers stay on the right route. Less error in transit can reduce fuel usage and allow your team to save on unnecessary fuel costs.
GPS-powered fleet management systems not only improve visibility, but they also improve safety by providing road-incident data such as hard braking, quick acceleration, speeding. This information can be used to develop better training programs based on real driver data.
3. Communication with drivers
With any healthy business operation, good communication goes the distance. One of the most common problems fleet managers face is miscommunication with drivers. This can lead to setbacks in scheduling and hinder your customer’s satisfaction with services.
Getting ahold of your drivers while they’re en route can be difficult. Digital systems help bridge the gap by sending audio messages directly to the driver and automated updates back to management regarding status or ETA.
Your fleet rental solution
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