Running a logistics company involves a lot of work to keep things, well, running. You have to attract clients, deal with fluctuating fuel prices, adhere to regulations, face the problem of more and more competitors, and so much more.
However, there’s one single solution that can help with many of these challenges: fleet efficiency. By enhancing this area of your business, you can reduce costs, complete more deliveries, and ultimately improve customer satisfaction.
If you’re wondering how to devise a greater fleet management strategy, read on. Below are five methods to improve fleet efficiency.
1. Incorporate specialist fleet management software
If you’re still dealing with spreadsheets and emails to manage things, it’s time to forget about the past and move into the present. That can be done by utilizing modern technology and specialist fleet management software.
This software boasts numerous features that can make fleet management a whole lot more streamlined. They can create automized routes. They provide communication tools. With the assistance of Geotab asset tracking, you can also receive real-time information about vehicles – ideal for knowing exactly where drivers are located, which can help with avoiding traffic and other issues that can cause delays.
2. Avoid empty miles
Empty miles are not only one of the most inefficient uses of time for a logistics company; they’re also one of the most expensive. To avoid having an empty truck returning after a delivery, search for ways to optimize the route.
Backhaul opportunities, for instance, might be possible if you partner with a provider. Once a delivery is done, you could also search for other jobs that are near the original delivery area.
3. Reduce idle time
Fuel is expensive. It’s a commodity no logistics company should waste. Yet it is done frequently due to idle time, where drivers pull up at a roadside rest stop and leave their engines running.
To reduce this idle time, it can be as simple as educating your drivers. While they may want to keep their engines on to power up their cooling or heating systems, it’s important they make behavioral changes. These may only be minor changes, but they can result in big savings for your company.
4. Regular maintenance
Keeping your fleet vehicles in tip-top shape is imperative. This helps in preventing unexpected breakdowns, the type that can cause significant delays in completing deliveries.
With this in mind, regular maintenance is a proactive and useful method for improving vehicle lifespan. With drivers inspecting vehicles before and after each job, they will be able to check for any wear and tear that needs fixing. The quicker these fixes are done, the less likely any breakdowns will happen.
5. The right fleet size
Are you sure your fleet is currently the right size? If you have even one vehicle which is sitting around and not running, this means your fleet is too big. While it can be difficult to let any employees go, it can be a necessary step to consolidate loads, operate smarter, and save money.
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