For enterprises operating large commercial fleets, an optimized fleet is of critical importance. And as the fleet manager, it’s up to you to maintain a fleet that gets the job done while delivering efficiency and cost savings.
But that is easier said than done.
A typical day for you and your team starts with assigning jobs and vehicles, deciding routes and timings, and making sure the fleets start and run on time. Once your fleet is on the move, you are constantly on the phone trying to get updates on where the vehicles are, and whether they are reaching their stops and destinations on time.
You also have to check if the vehicles are in perfect condition, if their maintenance dates are coming up, and which ones need immediate servicing. All of this information is captured on paper, logged in numerous spreadsheets, and then fed into an ERP.
Needless to say, tallying the information is a nightmare, and trying to get real-time visibility on any data, or any vehicle is very challenging. And reporting at the end of the month is a nightmare.
To add to all this, the management is always looking to cut costs on fleet operations.
What’s the Way Out?
The solution lies in having a fleet management software that can cut through these challenges and give you complete visibility and control over your fleet operations. A fleet management software helps you bring all the disparate tasks; tracking, maintenance, analysis, and reporting; on one single dashboard. It significantly cuts down your time spent on manual and repetitive tasks, while helps utilize your fleet’s full potential. And what’s more, it can easily plug into your company ERP, so all information stays updated in real time.
Let’s explore the common challenges that come with enterprise fleets, and how a fleet management software can help resolve them.
- Managing geographically dispersed fleets: No matter how well a fleet schedule is planned, once the vehicles are on the move, many fleet managers have little visibility into their whereabouts. You often have to depend on calls to figure out where the vehicles are. This is further complicated when you have large commercial fleets operating across several cities, and no single place to view or manage them all. You do not know where your vehicles are at any given moment, if they are running on schedule, or have any data to gauge overall fleet efficiency.
- Information Overload: In an effort to bring in more data and make processes more efficient, you can easily have an information overload. For large fleets, there would be numerous logs detailing vehicle timings, trip data, maintenance/servicing information and more, all recorded on different documents. Finding any one piece of information, or viewing all this information holistically, to identify patterns and problems, can become a massive challenge.
- Safety: Driver and vehicle safety are among the primary concerns for any commercial fleet. And while you might have extensive regulation governing how your drivers should be driving, you have no way of knowing if they are actually following the rules. Rash driving might be hurting you due to higher accident rates and greater wear and tear on your vehicles.
How can a fleet management software help?
A fleet management software can help you consolidate all the different aspects that you need to monitor, giving you greater visibility and transparency in your fleet operations.
- Real-time GPS tracking for all your fleets for live location updates
- Trip details and overall fleet performance measurement on web dashboards
- Find any fleet data with just a few clicks
- Track vehicle usage and diagnostic data to spot performance issues and problematic usage patterns
- Monitor driving behaviour to know which drivers need greater assistance and training
- Operational Costs: Managers of large fleets often have idle vehicles, without even realizing it. Or you might have vehicles that are out of commission for long periods of time because they require major maintenance work. Additionally, you might be unaware of your vehicles being used outside of work hours. All these scenarios are possible when you have no organized way of managing your fleet assets and spotting performance issues before they become huge problems. And it can mean significant loss of investment for your company.
- Fuel Costs: Rising fuel prices will always be a challenge for commercial fleets. Companies usually try to bring down expenses by economic fuel usage, with better scheduling and routing. However, that is possible only when you know the routes that your drivers are taking, traffic patterns that regularly delay your vehicles, or driving practices that are consume more fuel. In the absence of all this information, it is difficult to ensure economic fuel use in your fleets.
- Insurance Costs: The more prone you vehicles are to accidents, the higher your insurance liability. Insurance premiums also depend upon your fleets’ history of road mishaps. And there is no way to bring down insurance costs unless you can enforce regulations for safe driving.
- Fleet Replacement: Fleet assets are expensive, and while fleet replacement is inevitable, frequent vehicle replacement can be financially taxing. This becomes a reality when you do not spot vehicle diagnostic issues on time, or when your drivers are not handling your vehicles as well as would want them to. Once again, without visibility into all these factors, there is effectively nothing you can do to manage fleet replacement costs.
How can a fleet management software help?
Given all the data that it collects, a fleet management software can help you spot patterns that are costing you money. You can
- Keep tabs on all vehicle movement and health statistics, to ensure that your assets are not underutilised or misused
- Track vehicles to know if your drivers are taking optimal routes, and re-route accordingly to save fuel consumption
- Identify and avoid traffic timings or driving behaviour that is highly fuel intensive
- Bring down insurance costs by better enforcing safety regulations
- Deploy vehicle diagnostics and predictive maintenance to ensure longer shelf life for your vehicle
If you own and operate a commercial fleet, you would be well acquainted with the issues outlined here. And trying to resolve these without a fleet management software is going to be challenging.
So, if you think it is time to embrace the right technology and optimize your fleets, we would love to help. Explore our Fleet Rollr solution to optimize your enterprise fleets. Or just drop us a line below and our fleet management experts will get in touch with you.