Slashing down costs without sacrificing the quality of your business protocol is priority zero in the ever-competitive commercial environment. With more and more businesses reaping the benefits of enhanced transparency regarding their fleets via vehicle tracking, it is about time that you too made the leap into the world of telematics.
Maintenance costs are a huge drain for any transportation-dependent business, especially with multiple vehicles. However, timely maintenance is a vital component of any business model, so, how can you cut down the fund drains here?
Well, as it so happens, there are several ways that fleet management systems like Fleetr can help you cut down the costs in this area, and in this article, we will explore just that!
Slashing Down Maintenance Costs Via Fleet Tracking
Here’s how it is done:
Timely Maintenance Alerts
Running regular maintenance checks, though recommended, is not always possible. However, this does not mean that you should ignore this extremely vital part of fleet management. Regular maintenance not only keeps the fleet vehicles in top shape but also cuts down the possibilities of accidents.
It is no news for most readers that maintenance issues often culminate into horrific traffic crashes which can cost the company thousands of dollars in compensation payouts. Thus the importance of preempting any major maintenance issues cannot be overstated.
Even the minor ones need your attention as things can escalate out of hand sooner than anticipated.
Since most telematics trackers are attached to the vehicle’s onboard diagnosis components, they constantly transmit vehicle heath status inputs. If anything worthy of your attention comes to pop up, the app will make sure that you see it.
As soon as you receive such a notification, it is your duty from there on (the fleet tracking app has done its work, now it’s your turn) to inform the driver of the situation and squeeze the maintenance resolution into your fleet operations schedule.
Be sure to tell your drivers not to put off the maintenance work because things will not get better on their own, and the cost will also be higher if you wait to resolve urgent issues.
Reduction Of Travel Mileage
The more a vehicle travels, the more maintenance needs it will face.
Thus if somehow the travel times and mileage were to be reduced, the vehicle won’t have to be subjected to as frequent maintenance as otherwise, although scheduled maintenance checks should still be kept in the picture: they are vital for the safety of your operation.
One way of cutting down travel miles and time is through proper route optimization. We know that not all routes are the same, some are more congested than others, while some are simply too long. In either case, going down the path will be highly inconvenient.
This is precisely the problem that route optimization addresses: it helps your select the best possible route, based on several factors including the travel distance. Your drivers, thus won’t have to take the long way around and instead get going easily with minimal hassle.
Less traveling time and miles also mean that your vehicles won’t need as much maintenance as otherwise. While the difference may feel meager at any given instant, the yearly savings through such an approach are statistically significant, and thus route optimization is worth your attention.
Cutting down route distances helps preserve the life of the vehicle’s tires, belts, and assorted components.
Naturally, choosing the optimal route in a relatively unknown part of town is impossible, however, GPS fleet tracking can make that possible too. Thus, not only do such apps minimize the hassle, but they also help cut down operations costs, making your business much more profitable.
Cutting Down Maintenance Costs Through Improved Driver Behavior
To ensure that your vehicles stay in top shape and that they never run into trouble on the road, it is imperative to ensure that your drivers act responsibly and drive safely. Responsible driving and being attentive on the road can not only make transportation much safer and streamlined but also ensure that maintenance troubles don’t come to haunt you again and again.
Hard pressing against the brakes, swift acceleration, speeding, aggressive driving, not slowing down when turning – these are all examples of negligent or reckless driving behavior that not only puts the driver at risk of a crash but also introduces major stress on the vehicle, thus necessitating more frequent maintenance.
Fleet management software like Fleetr can help you catch such behavior, from there on, it’s your responsibility. Make sure that such behavior is not repeated; you should counsel your workers often on the importance of safe driving practices and how even slight negligence can have disastrous consequences.
Through modifications in the behavior of your drivers, you can ensure better performance from your fleet vehicles and expect them to last longer without requiring urgent maintenance jobs. This will not only safeguard your drivers and the company from a huge financial loss (accident lawsuit) but also cut down operation costs by lowering the need for maintenance.
No More Idling
Wait, aren’t we getting off-topic here? Not at all, idling and maintenance needs are quite interlinked. We already know that idling is one of the major fuel waste sources for any transportation business and while the damages may seem meager at any given instant, the long-term impact can be staggering.
But apart from that, more idling means more work done by your engine (with zero results), and thus you’ll also have to contend with more frequent maintenance requirements. Lucky for you, fleet tracking apps send instant alerts to managers, warning them of their assets being abused.
When you get the notification, simply let your driver know that idling is not okay for you.
Constant Maintenance Alerts
Knowing exactly what is wrong and at what moment is an important prerequisite for cutting down maintenance costs. All maintenance issues are best resolved immediately before they become more serious and thus more costly.
But it is impossible to know when something starts going out of order until the symptoms appear.
Or it would’ve been without fleet management systems – luckily, GPS trackers do much more than simply spot your vehicles on a map screen. Since they are hooked directly with the onboard diagnostic setup, you can expect timely warnings whenever things go bad.
Let the driver know immediately so that they can get it fixed and avoid bigger troubles.
Maintenance & Repair History
Knowing the maintenance and repair history of every vehicle, with just a tap will help you better profile every segment of your fleet. This way, you’ll be able to see which vehicles ran more frequently into maintenance trouble and figure out ways to prevent that from happening again and again.
Perhaps the driver is being a bit negligent, or maybe there is something seriously wrong with the vehicle itself. Whatever the reason, be sure to act fast because constant maintenance expenses can cut down your profits pretty badly.
Sometimes, it is best to let go of a vehicle when it is causing nothing but trouble.
Of course, to make such a decision, you’ll need solid evidence suggesting that the said vehicle is indeed a drag and that your business would be better off without it.
Timely Maintenance Reminders
Okay, maybe nothing’s wrong, yet. This does not mean that your duties end there; the importance of timely maintenance work is highly underrated. Tune-ups and oil changes, for instance, may seem trivial but try working optimally without having them done regularly.
Everyone knows that these things must be done on time (or rather before time), without fail, to ensure the best health for your engine and to keep it running optimally.
And, then there is a cost-effective side to these expenses as well – unless addressed timely, these issues will inflate out of proportion and become much more costly.
Better to spend less, on time, than a much bigger sum later on!
Engine Diagnosis Reports
The engine is what gives life to your vehicle, if it were a body, the engine would be the precious heart. Any engine problems can render your vehicle obsolete, and you should thus never delay addressing even minor problems with the component.
You don’t have to get it opened up now and then to know if the engine is working optimally. Instead, just tap into the automatic engine diagnosis reports delivered by your fleet management app to stay ahead of the problem.
This timely vigilance is much better than having to suffer through roadside repairs when the vehicle breaks down and losing your clients due to unnecessary delays.
The best part with all of the areas discussed so far is that you don’t need to keep your eyes peeled constantly at the screen to ensure that your vehicles are performing optimally. Instead, just tap into the app when you get an alert to warn you of impending maintenance trouble.
Going The Extra Mile For Minimizing Maintenance Expenses
While the contributions of fleet management software in slashing down maintenance costs by informing you of the issues in time cannot be overstated, this is not all. You have some duties, on your end as well. Fleet managers must create a professional environment in this business and ensure that the drivers are not leaving their posts in a rush but instead proceeding according to meticulous protocol.
The transportation business is about precision, not speed, just plan things well and you will make sure that all of your drivers reach their destinations on time. But before they go on pressing the accelerator, beginning the engines to life, and roaring off to the next destination, your drivers must perform a couple of essential duties. You can even set up timetables and track charts to ensure that they do so.
These pre-trip duties or inspections should cover every aspect of the vehicle and ensure that all are in the correct order before they head off to wherever they’re going:
- All the lug nuts should be in place and holding firm (not loose)
- The air pressure must be optimal, the air brakes must be working properly, and the air-lines and compressor must be in order
- All the lights and indicators must be in order
- There should be no fluid leaks, especially from the fuel compartment or brake fluids
- The power steering mechanism and its fluid must be in optimal condition
- The fuel levels, engine oil, coolants, etc. should also be in the correct order
And so on…
Note that timely inspection of these troubles and catching any maintenance issue or potential issue on time will be miles better than having to pay double or triple or perhaps, even more, to get things fixed when catastrophe strikes. Moreover, the expenses will be inflated even further if the maintenance trouble leads to an automobile accident.
You don’t even want to imagine the consequences of such an incident, just be sure to do all you can to preempt such occurrences.
The combination of eternal vigilance on your part and the timely reminders created by fleet tracking apps will allow you to cut down maintenance costs to the bare minimum and ensure a smooth operation sequence for your fleet vehicles.
Fleet Tracking Can Help Cut Costs In Other Areas As Well
If you thought that maintenance troubles were the only financial drains that fleet tracking can help you with then be ready for this surprise. Fleet management software can and do help create a cost-effective transportation protocol, throughout.
Here are some other areas (apart from maintenance costs) where they help prevent unnecessary monetary drains and introducing a cost-effective approach:
Getting More Done With Less
The biggest monetary drain in the business world is letting time fly by without doing anything. Time is money, period. Thus if a system allows you and your drivers to get more things done every day through better scheduling, optimal route selection, and idling alerts, it should be more than welcome.
The sum saved up through this approach, by the end of every year, will be enough to take your business to the next level. A minor monthly rent will not look like much when you’re saving, let’s say, ten times as much through better management and planning.
They say that the amount of time spent on planning something will cut many folds of that duration from the process of actually doing that thing – fleet tracking just proved it!
No More Fuel Wastage
Fuel wastage is one of the most important money drains for any business with a transportation component. But of course, it is impossible to not travel when your business relies primarily on your ability to do so, however, cutting down extra fuel costs should not be a trouble with fleet management apps.
Whenever your drivers are idling, unnecessarily, the app will notify you, and you can ask them not to do so. Over the year, the savings made through this small change will be staggering.
Automated Performance Records
No need to rely on outdated and hard-to-verify manual logs. Without complete transparency, you can’t ensure that you’re doing the best you can to avoid unnecessary monetary drains. Thus, stop taking the highly inaccurate and easily falsifiable log entries seriously.
Instead, use the automated records from the fleet tracking app to know the complete picture and act where needed to cut down operations costs.
Incentivizing Vigilance Through Fleet Tracking Data
Dedicated workers are the biggest asset for any business.
You must ensure that all of your drivers are doing the best they can to perform better and to avoid unnecessary losses. The best way to do so is by introducing incentives so that everyone has something to look forward to for all the dedication they’re bringing to the business.
A free iTunes gift card for the best performer is as nice an incentive as any.
And of course, the honor of being selected from among their fellow workers will be no less of a proud moment either (but do include an incentive to make this effective).
Improving Road Safety & Avoiding Traffic Accidents
The biggest financial drain for any fleet business can be to get embroiled in an accident lawsuit, and they are not as rare as you might imagine. Many states in the USA have not seen a week without a fatal traffic accident for almost a decade, and in some cases, even more than that.
Thus the odds of a traffic accident cannot be ignored and thus you must do everything in your authority to promote safe driving practices. By avoiding negligence and recklessness on the road, you can save your business a substantial loss which would not be possible without the monitoring abilities afforded by fleet tracking systems.
Fleetr Will Make Your Business More Cost-Efficient
Small businesses are usually reluctant to go ahead with a fleet tracking solution because they don’t feel that the cost of having one will make their startup more profitable. However, what if we were to tell you that tracking a vehicle can cost you as little as a mere $9.99 per vehicle?
No, we’re not kidding, and that’s not all: Fleetr will provide you a free GPS tracker for your vehicle (or vehicles), you won’t have to sign any binding contracts, there are no duration commitments, no hidden fees, and no charges for device installation.
Sounds sweet, right?
Couple all of this with the cost-saving applications listed above and Fleetr turns out to be the perfect fleet tracking system you can go for your business.
Don’t delay matters any further; call us today!