Tips for Managing Your Fleet of Company Vehicles
Your company’s vehicle fleet is the most important part of your operation. Whether you’re a delivery service, running a taxi company, or performing repairs, you rely on your fleet to generate income. If anything goes wrong, if just one vehicle breaks down in any way, your operations will be disrupted.
While you can’t prevent every possible disruption to your business, you can implement some systems to manage your vehicles to prevent downtime, injury, and legal problems.
Inspect your fleet vehicles regularly
To limit liability, vehicle inspection should be a top priority for your company, and the responsibility for inspections should fall on your drivers and mechanics. Have your mechanics conduct regular fleet vehicle inspections on a regular schedule and have each driver conduct a basic inspection before hitting the road each day.
The daily inspections performed by your drivers should include checking things like:
- Fluid levels
- Tire pressure
- Turn signals are working
- Signs of fluid leaks
Mechanics will know what to look for during less frequent, periodic inspections. As a general rule, they should make sure hoses are tightened, valves are working properly, fuses aren’t burned out, your windshield wipers are in good condition, and all your lights are working.
Regular inspections provide the following benefits:
- Increased longevity of your vehicles
- Reduced repair and maintenance costs
- Less chance of unexpected parts failure
- Increased safety for people and cargo
Stay on top of recalls and safety issues
These days, it’s hard to escape owning a vehicle that needs some kind of repair due to a safety recall. Since 2000, there have been more than 12,000 recalls. Whether it’s brakes, seatbelts, airbags, or anything else, it’s important to get these issues taken care of when they’re announced.
Make sure you’re on the manufacturer’s mailing list for recall notices for your vehicles. If you operate multiple makes and models, it might take some effort to make sure you’ll be notified of any future recalls.
When you get a notice in the mail about a safety recall, schedule an appointment to have the issue taken care of as fast as possible. Don’t wait because if the safety issue is serious, you could end up with a hurt driver, or they might hurt someone else in an accident.
Schedule regular oil changes with fleet packages
Some companies that offer oil changes provide packages specifically designed for fleet owners in order to make the process easy and smooth. These services are usually provided at a discount, too.
Fleet oil change packages are great because if you don’t schedule your oil changes for multiple vehicles ahead of time, it could take you a week or more just to get them all done. When you use a fleet package, you’ll be able to schedule all of your oil changes and get them done faster.
Use software to manage your fleet
Do you currently use software to manage your vehicle fleet? If not, it’s time to get on board. By using fleet management software, you’ll be more organized than you ever thought possible.
Software will help you track regular maintenance, repairs, inventory, orders, warranties, and can even help you manage how your technicians spend their time. For instance, you can have the system assign tasks to technicians based on their skills and keep your team busy so there’s no wasted time.
Monitor driver behavior
You don’t have to go all out by installing a surveillance system in your vehicles, but you should at least use sensors in strategic locations to monitor how your drivers are operating your vehicles.
For instance, it’s a good idea to monitor fuel consumption, how often your drivers fill up, where they drive, and how long they idle in their vehicles. If your drivers are filling up too often, it could be a sign that the vehicle has an issue, but it could also be that the driver is wasting gas.
You should also use GPS to track your fleet vehicles. Not only is this ideal for driver safety, but it’s also going to tell you when someone is wasting company time. If you do find someone wasting company time and gas, you’ll be able to cut your losses before they grow too large.
Fleet management is essential to your operation
Managing your fleet is critical to maintaining your operation. It’s critical to stay on top of maintenance, repairs, and safety recalls as well as fuel consumption and the general condition of your vehicles.
When your vehicles are running smoothly, your business will run smoothly and you’ll be better equipped to increase your profitability.