One of the greatest benefits of being in the business of helping people manage their fleets is learning where the challenges are and focusing energy on finding solutions for them. Data plays a crucial role in effective fleet management. Not just having it, but being able to quickly and accurately collect it, then easily use it for the benefit of the company. Through 30 years of successfully consulting for mobile reliant industries, adapting modules to service specific industries, and growing services to fit the evolving needs fleet managers the world over, we’ve hopefully learned a few things on how to be helpful to them: It’s all about the data at your fingertips in your Fleet Management Software.
Topics: maintenance management, maintenance software optimization, fleet maintenance, vehicle data, preventative maintenance, fleet management, driver behaviour, real-time data, trucking, preventive maintenance, safety
Asset tracking problems = lost revenue
As fleet operators, companies acquire a range of mobile assets for a variety of reasons. For all the benefits those assets bring, their increased quantity means that fleet managers are also increasing the risk of loss through theft and/or misuse by operators. According to automotivefleet.com, there’s an average of 2,248 vehicles stolen each day in the United States alone and these numbers increase on holiday when the majority of vehicles are supposed to be out of service, due to holidaying drivers. Fleets contend with many related asset tracking problems on a regular basis which ends up all but stalling productivity.
According to some recent statistics on AutomotiveFleet.com, the repair cost (labor and parts) of running your aging fleet increases annually by 5% to 7%, but when you look closer at the segment breakdowns, the numbers are much more dramatic. Looking at “Repair Spend by Odometer” we see the cost rise almost 10 times, once the vehicle hits over 90,000 km and “Repair Spend by Months in Service” shows a jump of nearly 8 times, once we get past the 37-month mark. Furthermore, these statistics exclude regular tire and oil changes, rental of replacement equipment and emergency overtime costs, or accident expenses. If these jumps seem extreme to you, it’s because they are, but they are a manageable part of the cost of maintaining a fleet. Keeping your fleet assets (vehicles and other mobile fueled equipment) and drivers safe, productive, and mobile is pivotal to reaching your organization’s sales and service goals. A great Fleet Management software will help you keep an educated eye on your maintenance costs, indicate when they begin to rise, and how to plan for optimization of the fleet. So, what can you do to keep your fleet in optimal shape?
The business world was rocked when Stephen R. Covey, the author of the best-selling book said, “ineffective people live day after day with unused potential.” Industry leaders, managers, and entrepreneurs everywhere quickly realized he wasn’t only talking about people, he was also describing the primary factors limiting a company’s growth.
Being a fleet manager has its unique challenges.
The Bad News
For over a year, we have been reading articles about Montreal buses running out of gas and then a whole lot of finger pointing as to where the blame should go. Unfortunately, pointing fingers seldom motivates anyone to find a solution, much less implement one. While we prefer looking for a solution, we thrive on challenges like this one, so go ahead and point those fingers our way. The Montreal Transit Authority (STM) is one of Coencorp’s oldest and most valued customers and we can tell you that the problem is much more complex than it seems, but also a lot simpler to solve than any of the articles have suggested. Let’s just say that there are a lot of steps and people involved in every aspect of decision-making when it comes to public safety. At the end of the day, we are grateful that the checks and balances are in place to protect the tens of thousands of daily travelers using public transit. As with all complex systems, the solution is often clearer than any implementation of it, but when it’s implemented, we must acknowledge the heroes who were patient enough to follow due diligence for our safety.
Today we give special recognition to some important partners who contribute to our success, the fleet managers themselves. Thanks to these hard-working and strategically essential employees from all the industries we serve, Coencorp has been growing for three decades, building the most comprehensive, fully integrated, customizable, and user-friendly fleet management system available, . To better understand what makes these partners so important to us, we need to take a look at all they do on a daily basis and how their business needs become our primary functions.
Pay Attention, Or You'll Pay!
I was planning my budget the other day and thinking about how much gas I used for trips to and from work, to do groceries, to the gym, to go on weekend outings with friends and family, and I realized that other than the mileage on my odometer, I didn’t really track where I spent on fuel each week; much less for each month, or year. I suppose if I knew I’d be a little shocked, and I’d also be a little more careful about what I paid for gas, how I operated my car, and how many trips I made each day. The truth was, I only had a vague idea about my gas spending behavior and I probably wouldn’t even see if my changes made any major difference or not to my single car usage. Then I thought about my clients.
Across industries and markets, we hear the call to real-time data collection and its importance to profitable big data analytics. Companies with fleets to manage have known this for a long time and continue to partner with fleet management system (FMS) suppliers to improve business practices and outcomes.
Where Your Fuel Management System Makes You Money
When discussing the high costs of fleet management, our customers often tell us fuel consumption is on par with expenses related to labor. In fact, they tend to complement each other in clear and trackable ways. The most obvious is when your fleet increases in size, so do labor and fuel expenses. However the relational increase isn’t always a one to one ratio. The question is why it sometimes seems to increase exponentially.