Fleet management is a tedious task. It involves tracking drivers’ performance, keeping tabs on costs, and ensuring that the company’s vehicles are always safe to drive. But, as much as fleet managers try to keep a check on everything, there are always things that go unnoticed, which can have a considerable impact on the business. This is where a quality fleet management solution comes in, which helps you keep track of driver behavior, mileage, maintenance, and other factors that enable you to manage your fleet effectively. So, what are some things you can do to keep tabs on your vehicles and drivers better?
Why Tracking The Performance Of Your Fleet Drivers Is Important
It’s essential to know your fleet’s performance to keep it on the right track. Fleet managers can track:
- Drivers’ fuel usage.
- Engine hours.
- Miles driven.
- Time spent idling and driving.
There is much more than a practical solution can do with a modern GPS tracking system. They can then use this information for tracking performance, managing the fleet, reducing costs, and finding ways of increasing revenue.
1. Use GPS/ Camera Combination
One of the more precise methods to ensure general compliance with your rules is to combine a GPS with an onboard CCTV camera. You can think of it as a dashcam (although you should also get one of those) directed at your drivers rather than the road. These fleet tracking with cam solutions allow you or your management team to monitor what your drivers are doing directly. One of the main advantages of using this combination is that an all-in-one system is often cheaper and more straightforward to install than many different models. Therefore, your vehicles will spend less time getting fitted and more time on the road where they should be.
2. Don’t Forget The Old Fashioned Ways
Technology is fantastic, and it does make life a lot easier. However, it is essential not to forget the old ways of doing things. This means manually checking and recording the mileage and hours driven. The best thing is to pair up manual checks with your tech to get a detailed overview of what is really happening. The main reason for continuing these manual checks is to remind your drivers that they are being monitored. As fantastic as technology is, it can seem remote and hidden away, resulting in your drivers forgetting that they are being monitored. As you know, the main reason for monitoring your fleet is not to trip up your drivers but merely to ensure they follow protocol and increase your revenue through good practices. Therefore, manual checks performed by your drivers will keep in their minds that they are being monitored and keep everyone on their toes.
3. Analyze The Fuel Consumption Of Drivers
The most significant expenses for most fleet businesses are salaries, maintenance, and fuel. You can’t do much about the wages you pay, and maintenance is an ongoing expense, but you can save some serious money by monitoring the fuel consumption per driver. In fact, by some estimates, fuel costs alone eat up around 60% of the total operating budget, which is enormous. Therefore, any savings you can find in this department could drastically increase your bottom line. Some options you can consider to reduce your fuel budget include:
- Find cheaper fuel: This one is easier said than done, but you could find a good deal if you buy enough if you look around.
- Upgrade to more fuel-efficient vehicles: You don’t need to do this in one go, but as each car comes to the end of its useful life, you can purchase a more fuel-efficient model as a replacement.
- The right vehicle must be used: Check that your fleet managers send out suitable cars for the jobs. For example, you don’t want your largest trucks doing short city runs and vice versa.
- Track consumption per driver: You can monitor how much fuel each driver is using. By using software, you should know how much they are using. If they are too hard on the gas pedal, you can reprimand them however you see fit. On the other hand, those who are frugal could get rewarded in some way.
4. Engage In Communication
In addition to utilizing technology to gather data about driver performance and impart insights, make sure to maintain regular communication with your fleet drivers. You should set aside time to communicate with your drivers beyond the digital management system. This means that all departments should understand each other’s jobs and the challenges they face. By ignoring your drivers’ complaints, you will not only burn through staff, but you will get less efficiency from them. You should also gain valuable real-world insights which could translate into further savings or increased revenue.
Fleet management is no longer only about tracking mileage. With the popularity of the Internet, it has become easier than ever to follow the performance of your drivers. If done improperly, this can result in empty trucks and unhappy drivers. Conversely, if done correctly, you will save money, increase productivity and foster a happier working environment.