Utility Saving ExpertFleet InsuranceWhat is fleet management?

Fleet Insurance Guides

What is fleet management?

A fleet is a group of commercial vehicles that deliver goods.

Like what you’re reading? Get more in our monthly newsletter!

Get the latest news and articles straight to your inbox from Utility Saving Expert

Why Is fleet management important for businesses?

Not having fleet management is like not having any concept of time. You’ll be confused, disorganised, and unaware of what’s happening around you. In the world of fleet management, time is money. 

A business that owns a group of motor vehicles must have effective fleet management in place. Staying afloat can be challenging in this ever-changing role. Generating revenue, reducing operational costs and maintenance costs all play a part in having an efficient fleet. Can one individual tackle this much responsibility? If so, are they superhuman? 

Or are they getting help elsewhere? 

Over 75% of fleet managers depend on vehicle telematics or a fleet management system to support their operation. If you don’t have a sound vehicle acquisition strategy, it can send your business down a disjointed path that may not be recovered. 

What Are Fleet Managers Responsible for?

Ensuring driver safety

It’s a challenge to ensure driver safety without being there to oversee it. Fleet managers are responsible for keeping an up to date driver training records. This includes scheduling extra coaching to drivers that aren’t performing efficiently. 

Reducing the costs throughout the fleet

Fleet managers have to look at the cost of everything they do and must always have in mind one question: ‘can this be done cheaper?’. 

Fleet efficiency is a skill adapted over time and experience. Some examples of effective fleet management include reducing fuel consumption, creating a preventative maintenance schedule, and having the right fleet insurance. 

Improving driver retention

For fleet management companies to be a success, a lot of the weight falls onto the drivers. Fleet managers must build a trusting relationship with their drivers, set their goals, and provide accurate training to improve driver retention.

Vehicle tracking

A fleet manager is like a parent with their children, they must always know the whereabouts of their vehicles. Fleet vehicle management will be a much smoother process if they can easily track their fleet. This is so they can update them of any changes, manage driver behaviour and in some cases track the packages being delivered.

Vehicle acquisition

This is not the retail therapy we all know and love. A fleet manager has to determine many factors before purchasing a vehicle. These factors are the purpose of the job, the prices of the vehicle and what insurance you can get with these vehicles. 

Vehicle acquisition links back to reducing the costs of the fleet. A functioning fleet is a cost-effective fleet.

Electronic Logging Device (ELD) compliance

Fleet managers must keep an accurate log of data to assess the performance of drivers. Not only is this important for driver behaviour, but it’s also cost-effective. Paperless records are a fleet manager’s best friend. Being able to digitally record drivers’ Hours of Service reduces cost and manages data efficiently.

What challenges does a fleet manager Face?

Fluctuating fuel costs

The constant change in fuel prices is a huge problem for fleet managers. It’s also a change that fleet managers have no control over. 

Fuel usage can be analysed by a telematics system that cyphers its data into a plan. Telematics can plan the best route that will use the least amount of fuel. It can also monitor any drivers that may be driving recklessly and breaking harshly, which results in more fuel consumption.

Acquiring fleet vehicles

Buying vehicles for your fleet can be time-consuming and isn’t as exciting as buying a brand new car. Fleet managers must buy vehicles in correlation with their business’s purpose whilst also keeping in mind the cost of their insurance.

It’s a tiresome job for fleet managers to search through various websites until they find the best insurance. Fleet vehicles are at a higher risk of damage than regular vehicles, so fleet managers must use a comparison website to determine the best insurance for their fleet. 

Vehicle maintenance

Fleet managers are bound to come across accidents and problems which will affect fleet performance. It’s essential to have a maintenance schedule to prevent problems such as unexpected breakdowns or accidents. 

In the chances that an accident occurs, fleet managers have to have clarity in the protection their insurance gives. Maintaining your vehicle’s data sometimes isn’t enough to prevent an accident or claims from taking place. It can be destructive to a fleet business to have an insufficient cover on their vehicles.

Ensuring compliance requirements are met

There are always changes in vehicle legislation and it can be overwhelming for fleet managers to keep track of them. A telematics system can track physical data such as safety checks and maintenance records which can support the compliance requirements being met. 

Not meeting the compliance requirements creates a disorganised fleet and won’t support a fleet manager’s cost-effective attitude. This is because accidents are more likely to happen and expensive insurance will be given.

Managing expenses

Even the analytical mind of a fleet manager can struggle with its expenses. There are tons of data that can be time-consuming to understand and can eventually result in an overwhelmed fleet. Fleet managers must know the best ways of reducing their operational costs to manage their expenses.

Health and safety

Fleet managers can put all of the right measures in place and can still be left with accidents. Commonly, a fleet manager hasn’t explored every insurance possible in regards to health and safety. Other than the basic insurances, there can also be a cover for sick employees and the injured public.

It can be difficult for fleet managers to maintain a robust report of claims and requested repair work if handling this on their own.

Why businesses need fleet management software

How does fleet management software work?

The benefits of fleet management software

What features to look for in fleet management software?

  • Notifications: Fleet tracking can be simple if the software can inform route changes, drivers going off course and inadequate driving behaviour.
  • Reports: Storing data is great for managers on the go that can essentially access everything under one roof.
  • Safety: Locating vehicles in a fleet management system is essential to increase the safety of drivers and fleet goods.
  • Dash-Cam: Having a dashcam installed onto vehicles can provide physical evidence for any claims made and can also provide a fleet manager with cheaper insurance. 

Final Thoughts

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How can a fleet manager improve productivity?

Here are a few ways to increase productivity:

  • Keep up to date with vehicle legislation
  • Encourage driver training programmes
  • Supporting maintenance procedures 
  • Implement a fleet management software that can automate data entry and complete time-consuming tasks

How do you measure the efficiency of a fleet of vehicles?

Firstly, install fleet management software. This can calculate vehicle data, the number of vehicles on the fleet, the safety of vehicles, the compliance and it can consider the changes a fleet can face. Having the data stored in one place makes finding gaps and identifying performance much easier for fleet managers to improve efficiency.

How much does fleet management software cost?

Each fleet is different which means each price will be different. Fleet managers can purchase software as a monthly or annual subscription. The hardware and software are purchased separately and each provider offers different features.

Which is the best fleet management software available?

One software may be perfect for one fleet and awful for another, so it’s impossible to name the best. But here are a few of the most popular software used.