Fleet managers need data when it comes to making sure that the fleet they are managing is operating to its best capacity. By keeping all the aspects of the operational proceedings of the fleet in optimal condition, fleet managers are able to minimize the costs. When fleet managers have data pertaining to fuel costs, driver safety, and vehicle depreciation, they are able to keep track of the soft and hidden costs that would otherwise become a problem to quantify and to justify.

Acquiring, operating, and disposing of vehicles in a fleet cause much of the data to be miscalculated, which can then lead to hidden costs that the company incurs. A lot of the data which fleet managers had for their perusal came through unreliable sources of data recording, like driver expense reports, phone calls, and even through word of mouth. The era of big data has made every aspect of the job much better for fleet managers – now they can obtain knowledge about these hidden costs and act to reduce them. Let’s take a look at how fleet managers reduce hidden costs pertaining to vehicle depreciation, fuel costs and driver safety.

Vehicle Depreciation

Most commercial fleets employ the services of fleet management companies when they want to make new acquisitions and add to their fleet. Fleet managers do their best when it comes to the acquisition aspect to reduce costs, but what about disposing of vehicles that have seen a lot of use, and their resale? The most common way to go about disposing vehicles from the fleet is by auctioning them off. Good fleet managers understand the fact that there are better alternatives to auctioning vehicles that have seen a lot of depreciation. They make use of all other avenues like brokers and wholesalers to get the most resale value of the vehicles, which are being disposed of from the fleet.

Fuel Pricing

By making use of data available now with the advent of technology, vehicles can be tracked and their performance can be recorded. The fuel efficiency can be increased by making use of that data. For instance, plenty of drivers keep the car running when it isn’t moving. While it may not seem like much in an individual vehicle basis, a fleet manager knows how the total fuel expended by idle cars can accumulate into an unnecessary cost when it’s seen from a macro perspective. All of the fuel costs incurred by the company due to excessive idling can contribute needless expenses, which can be better used in other aspects of the fleet like maintenance.

Safe Driving

Many costs your company may be liable to pay come from accidents. When a vehicle from your fleet is in an accident, your company has to incur the cost of repairing or replacing the vehicle. It also incurs the “soft cost” of the inactivity during the downtime. Using telematic data can help fleet managers keep track of the performance of their drivers, and take necessary action when it comes to ensuring the implementation of safe driving practices. That can go a long way in reducing costs. Every precaution necessary should be taken to reduce the chances of accidents – making use of big data is the way to go for the fleet manager to make better decisions.

Bottom Line

The fleet manager’s profession entails a lot of responsibility. Of course, the bigger costs like the negotiation of lease rates, management fees, and capitalization have to be taken care of first. Then, by making use of big data, they can identify and minimize hidden and soft costs their company is liable to pay.