There are many practices of the highly effective fleet manager. Properly implemented, they can have a tangible impact on the bottom line, overall safety, driver, and vehicle efficiency.

VEM Technology uses the knowledge and successful practices accumulated by its customers and combines them into the simplest and most effective principles that are guaranteed to improve fleet performance, making you a more effective fleet manager.

1. Action, not reaction, when it comes to fleet safety

Many distractions and dangers beset your drivers. Precisely because of this, it is good for an effective fleet manager to be prepared for any potential problems. You may pay too much if you wait until an incident or problem occurs to take action. Hands-free devices (for hands-free driving), GPS tracking systems with modules for monitoring driver behavior, or cameras in the cabin may sound like expensive and generally unnecessary expenses, but the alternatives will cost you many times more.

Be proactive about your employees’ behavior and actions when you’re not around them.

2. Make maintenance easy and affordable

Most people are born lazy and complicated schedules often confuse them. If you want your drivers to keep up with routine work and vehicle maintenance, you need to do inspections, schedules, and reports quickly, and accurately with as little effort as possible. We all know those boards with the handwritten colorful notes on them that are supposed to keep the fleet schedule tidy. Cloud-based fleet management software tools, with the ability to access from mobile devices and automated features such as reminders, are the key to the successful and efficient management of any fleet manager. Convenient for these purposes are GPS tracking systems with a vehicle maintenance module and notification when reaching a certain mileage or dates for service and preventive activities.

Simplify support by making it mobile, automated, and accessible to everyone on your team. 

3. Define clear rules for vehicle purchase and depreciation

Persistence is the key! Without clear rules, staff from different departments can purchase vehicles according to their individual needs and views, and then keep them for as long as they see fit, which is not recommended. Without bulk vehicle purchases and clarity on time/mileage for depreciation and sale, your company can lose a lot of capital.

Take the time to specify vehicle requirements and make purchase plans before putting them into action. You should also aim to optimize vehicle replacement requirements. 

4. Set clear goals and expectations for driver performance

Some fleet owners/managers motivate their drivers for a job well done when the driver achieves fuel economy, demonstrates a good driving style, or performs regular vehicle inspections. Motivating staff with diligence can get you more than you put in. Although this type of work (achieving certain goals) does not suit everyone, it is good to keep employees’ work closely related to their performance. Good driving habits, fuel economy, and maintained vehicles should be pursued as a goal by all personnel involved with the fleet. By monitoring drivers’ behavior, it is easy to boost their safe driving skills, for example:

Create achievable goals for your drivers to encourage them to be accountable for their job duties. 

5. Measure all the important metrics

Metrics are of particular importance. They can help you the efficient fleet manager to monitor the progress of the overall work, but they can also become a pile of numbers if you are not measuring anything useful. If you want to be aware of the fleet, you need to make sure that you are measuring the right things. However, how can you improve a process if you don’t have a starting point? Several metrics can give you this starting point, as well as a solid picture of the overall health of the fleet and its productivity, namely – cost per kilometer, the trend of total costs, and the sum of operating costs. In other words, monitoring and measuring specific data that affects your fleet directly.

6. Digitize all the documents you can

Get rid of annoying paper. In the era of cheap online space, you have no excuse to keep all your documents on paper. Invoices, schedules, photos, employee files, product manuals, etc., can be stored in a cloud space (such as Google Drive or Dropbox) and accessible from any device with the internet.

It’s time to join the modern era of management. Move fleet documents to an external server and you’ll be able to find the information you need when you need it, no matter where you are.

7. Be interested in industry news and benefits

Business is constantly changing. For an effective fleet manager, it is important to keep up with the latest developments and innovations in it. Join an appropriate association, follow publications and blogs on the subject, and keep yourself up to date with new trends in the automotive industry.

Everything you need to be an expert in fleet management is at your fingertips. 

8. The effective fleet manager experiments!

Don’t be afraid to try new technologies and good practices. Alternative fuels, which 15 years ago were seen as something unattainable, are now on the way to becoming a reality, and many times more efficient. The same is true for automotive technology, where with accurate numbers you can make informed decisions about ROI, efficiency, and fleet improvement.

If you have your practices that have proven to be successful, you can share them in the comments in the form to download the catalog of services.