5 Fleet Management Tricks For Business Owners

fleet management tricks business owners

Recent world events have many business owners starting or improving their fleet of transport vehicles and drivers for better control of inventory. A business that can guarantee delivery because they have a driver and a reliable vehicle is more secure than a business that relies on outside couriers. To build the best fleet and keep the best drivers, consider the 5 top tips below. 

1. Improve Your Technology 

Many fleet vehicles are stripped-down versions. For the safety of your drivers and ease of monitoring, make the investment so drivers have access to: 

● tire pressure monitoring 
● lane change sensors 

A dash cam for the safety of your drivers is also a good investment. In the event of an accident or a near miss, you will have data to help you determine your next round of driver training. 

Do make sure you offer a hands-free phone option hook up in each vehicle; in older vehicles, you can make this change easily with a blue-tooth phone plug-in. If you provide a cellphone for your drivers while they are working, you may want to limit pairing options. However, if your drivers are using their own cell while on the clock, you may need to do some shopping to find the most convenient pairing option. 

2. Train For Safety 

Those who drive for your company may benefit from an extra class on defensive driving. Because many fleet vehicles are larger and heavier than standard passenger vehicles, your drivers need to be able to react more quickly and respond to hazards further down the road. Consider adding options for drivers that need to function constantly in the city. For those drivers who need to constantly re-route, the best mapping apps on their phones may be the simplest choice; make sure you offer an excellent quality phone mount and easy access to charging. There are new tools that are city-specific; if your drivers need to transport fragile items across Kansas City, guidance around wrecks and potholes can get your goods delivered in safety. 

If you are at all concerned about inappropriate phone use while driving, go ahead and provide a phone that you can secure and keep loaded only with what is necessary. The requirements you set for your drivers may mean that you have to control their navigation tools. 

Consider allowing established, experienced drivers to travel with new drivers and offer coaching as well as training. Newer drivers may need time to adjust to the work of managing a larger vehicle that may not have all the bells and whistles of a passenger vehicle. With in-person coaching or a buddy-style training, your new employees may be more comfortable asking the necessary questions to stay safe. 

Set High Safety Requirements 

Your drivers may not need to own a CDL to drive for you, but their safety training must be beyond what is needed for a standard driver's license. In addition, your driver must agree to make you aware of any driving infractions. For severe infractions, such as driving under the influence, your employees must understand that they may be terminated. 

Because drivers may try to hide such an infraction, you may need to post this policy front and center for all employees. You may also need to track this data if there is a risk of an employee not reporting their legal troubles to you. When writing this policy, make sure that your HR department runs the language by your attorney to protect all parties. 

Should an employee be at fault for an accident in your vehicle or be arrested for careless, reckless or impaired driving on their time, make sure you connect with your attorney to protect your insurance and your reputation while the driver is in your employ. 

Automate Your Maintenance 

To keep your fleet as safe as possible, get in the habit of maintenance by the calendar. Oil changes and fluid checks by the calendar instead of by the mileage will be much easier to track. If that means that you need to do an early oil change to get vehicles on the most effective schedule for your business, do so. 

If you must store your fleet vehicles outside, consider investing in weather appropriate covers for long holidays and shutdowns. For example, vehicles that need to sit outside in Phoenix may need tire covers to save the rubber from UV degradation. If your delivery vans need to sit outside in Seattle, a rain guard over the windows may reduce the risk of moisture getting in. 

For those with several delivery vans, consider getting all fleet vehicles on a rolling rotation so you always have a vehicle available. Finally, make sure you set hard rules about who can crack the hood on a vehicle. If a driver notices that a vehicle is leaking coolant, you want the vehicle to go to the mechanic immediately. 

Search The Country And Buy The Best 

For many businesses, brand loyalty makes fleet management much easier. If you are planning to increase the size of your fleet, searching for your favorite vehicle nationwide is a wonderful way to get the best price on used vehicles. Working with car shipping companies can be a smart and competent way to get the best vehicle for your needs delivered to your city. 

Commercial vehicle trading websites can offer shoppers many benefits. If you have a local mechanic who takes care of your fleet of Chevrolet delivery vans but don't have a nearby Chevrolet dealership, do be ready to ask the seller to take the vehicle to a local mechanic for a check. If they refuse, you can move on to the next seller. 

Of course, you will need to keep an eye out for scammers. If you can order a vehicle from a dealership across the country and get it delivered to another dealership near you, you may need to pay a bit more but you can avoid transmitting payments across the nation. 

Your expanded fleet vehicles may be found for a much better price far across the country. Quality maintenance and a high level of driver training can protect your reputation and bottom line.

Official Bootstrap Business Blog Newest Posts From Mike Schiemer Partners And News Outlets