Truck fleet management is a critical business function for any logistics or trucking business. Fleet managers are responsible for keeping vehicles and drivers safe, productive and on the road to help reach sales goals and maintain customer satisfaction. While it can seem like an overwhelming task, we’ll give you five truck fleet management tips to make it easier for you.
1. Develop A Maintenance Checklist Specific To Your Fleet
One of the top responsibilities in trucking fleet management is maintaining the good condition of your vehicles and having routine maintenance done on the truck. There are a lot of different and critical parts in a truck and all those parts and the conditions of each will differ for each and every truck you have in the fleet. It’s important that you create a comprehensive list of items that should be checked and maintained during every scheduled maintenance. Having this list ensures that you stay on top of each vehicle’s condition and performance. This allows you to save time and resources and maximize productivity for the business, all while keeping drivers safe. A comprehensive list will also be helpful to outsourced maintenance providers who may not be familiar with your fleet yet.
2. Take Advantage Of Technology And Create A Maintenance Schedule Around Your Business Needs
The larger your fleet, the more things there are for you to keep track of and that can get pretty hectic. These days, technology can help you stay on top of these with the additional benefit of access to special tools that can further help. Manual data entry can be very tedious and time consuming, but computerized systems are a more efficient way to aggregate data and compile reports that empower you to make quicker and better decisions.
Using these tools and technology, you can look at previous data for peak utilization and industry seasonality to determine when are the best times to schedule routine maintenance. To maximize uptime of all vehicles in your fleet, schedule maintenance around times when service demand is low or adjust the number of non-operating vehicles as you foresee more business coming.
3. Work With A Reliable Maintenance Service Provider
Once you have a detailed list of maintenance that needs to be carried out and a schedule that fits your needs without sacrificing customer satisfaction, you’ll want to hire a reliable maintenance service provider that can work around your needs. Communicate clearly what your fleet needs and make sure you and the service provider agree on the turn-around times that fit your business’ schedule. Keep these in mind when looking for a provider of truck maintenance in Dallas, TX.
Of course, sometimes things can go wrong unexpectedly and you need things fixed immediately. Once again, a trusted truck maintenance provider will come in handy. Check if your provider can do repairs in your own facility or even on the road. Contact companies like WTX Truck Repair, LLC for a quick response and dependable 24 hour roadside service.
4. Regularly Review Your Maintenance Metrics And Data
When working with a good service provider, they should also be able to help you with the data for all your fleet maintenance. Use this data and specific metrics to constantly evaluate your progress. Using data to check on things such as downtime percentage, cost of vehicle downtime, and maintenance cost per unit, you can easily evaluate if your truck fleet management plan is helping your business succeed. This constant monitoring and evaluation enables you to make improvements to operations and allows you to spot trends in your fleet and drivers so you can make improvements and spot and solve issues before they grow larger.
5. Make This A Team Effort Between Your Drivers And Your Maintenance Managers
Lastly, one of the biggest assets to any fleet manager is getting the help of you drivers and repair technicians. Your drivers are the first line of defense against unexpected issues and breakdowns. Drivers spend the most time with the trucks aside from those who maintain and repair them. Their experience with the vehicles and their constant attention to it that can help prevent small maintenance issues from turning into massive repair jobs. Instill the habit of making consistent pre-trip and post-trip checks among drivers and foster an environment of open communication among drivers, repair technicians, and fleet managers. Teamwork among these individuals will be key in trucking fleet management and maintaining the condition and performance of your fleet.