Updated: Dec 17, 2021
Managing a fleet is a complicated undertaking. It requires organization and preparation. As a business owner, you need to take some steps to ensure your fleet is prepared for success. Here are our top 4 tips on how to efficiently manage your fleet.
Fleet management system
The first and most efficient way to manage your fleet effectively is by investing in a fleet management system. These are also referred to as ELDs (Electronic Logging Device). ELD technology does a lot more than just track an individual driver's HOS (Hours of Service). These systems enable you to set routes and assign them to your drivers, monitor how your equipment is being driven, and alert you when it's time for vehicle maintenance. An ELD is a well-rounded device that tracks all aspects of your fleet so you can keep your drivers organized, prepare for your expenses ahead of time and provide coaching for your drivers when they make mistakes or drive recklessly.
Know your expenses
One of the most important aspects of managing your fleet is knowing your expenses and preparing for them ahead of time. As I mentioned before, an ELD can do part of this for you by alerting your before your trucks need to receive maintenance so you can avoid surprise expenses. All other expenses should be meticulously tracked by you or an employee you can trust to delegate that responsibility to. Make a list of all expenses, how often they occur, and the costs, and use it to keep track of everything so that nothing ever takes you by surprise.
A lot of smaller companies often forget how important having a well-thought-out company policy is. Employees need a guide for the things that are acceptable and the things that are not so they can do their job to your standards. If you have a hard time coming up with policies on your own, go to google and find some company policy templates for transportation companies to get some ideas.
A solid business strategy is a key component of fleet management. You need to make sure you have a detailed plan for how your business is going to make profits. Not only do you need a 'Plan A' but you also need to include a backup plan for how you are going to generate revenue in case your first plan falls through. Remember: anything can happen! Contracts can get canceled, Insurance can lapse, and safety scores can drop, all affecting your ability to make money! So please be sure you have thought of every angle within your business plan.
To conclude, it is incredibly important to properly manage your fleet from the start of your business. This management includes all aspects of your fleet from the behavior of your drivers all the way down to your long-term business plan. Set yourself, and your fleet, up for success by employing the use of these tips.