In 2020, the term “fleet management” encompasses a lot of things. If your business owns or utilizes a fleet of vehicles, you likely require some form of fleet management. This looks different for each company, however, they all have the same goal in mind.
What Is Fleet Management?
Fleet management is multi-faceted. It’s a system of reducing costs, minimizing risks, improving productivity, increasing the safety of a company’s fleet, and a whole lot more. With rapid technological advancements, the list only gets longer. Industries continue to discover new ways to optimize their business. Many companies use fleet management software to automate processes and make data-informed business decisions.
What are the responsibilities of a fleet manager?
Like any manager, there are many different responsibilities. But, to provide a more thorough answer, a company may have;
- Fueling: Fuel is the largest cost of all fleets, so this is no surprise. Companies often have their fleet on a fuel card program. These programs help them get the best prices anywhere, but also prevent fraud and receive on-site fueling.
- Acquisition: Another area that fleets can dramatically reduce costs is in manufacturing orders for vehicles and parts. By understanding the specific challenges of your fleet routes, you can arrive at negotiations knowing the money you’re spending is only on what you need.
- Maintenance: Fleet managers will often set up maintenance schedules. These schedules consider their fleets’ parts and manufacturer warranties. Taking action early saves the company money and maintains the resale value of their vehicles. An ounce of prevention will save you more money in the long run.
- Safety: It is in everybody’s interest to have a fleet safety program. Safety programs protect employees and limit company liability. Fleet management helps implement policies that encourage your drivers to be all-stars on and off the road.
- Performance: In our data-driven world, fleet managers are able to optimize the productivity of their drivers by quickly analyzing fuel consumption, idle times, and more for business reports.
- Regulation: Fleet managers are the ones that must be on top of all the ever-changing transportation laws. Closely monitoring new legislation allows for managers to quickly communicate new laws to drivers. Fast communication helps companies avoid paying expensive fines and penalties.
What types of fleet management technologies are there?
There is no limit to the number of fleet management services available to companies. To run a well-optimized fleet, your business should be utilizing all kinds of technologies.
- Telematics Vehicular Tracking Technology: Nearly all fleet management services utilize telematics. This is an umbrella term for most devices in your truck cab such as GPS and electronic logging. In addition to showing directions, telematics devices can relay actionable data back to fleet managers.
- Fleet Management Software (FMS): Fleet Management Software helps fleet managers do the bulk of their responsibilities in a speedy and user-friendly manner. You will discover that FMS services strive to provide an all-in-one experience from exploring performance data to updating driver routes.
What are the qualifications of a fleet manager?
The duties required to successfully run a fleet management department are vast. Many fleet managers come from just as diverse of a background. The most important qualification is that fleet managers are well-rounded, knowledgeable of their industry, and have prior experience managing similar operations.
In today’s world, you need to have an analytical mindset.
Most fleet managers have a minimum education of an associate’s degree and two years of management experience. Technology is raising expectations of fleet management and those running it though. With companies using data for more and more decisions, candidates with a business or finance background are highly favored. Though your core curriculum can be almost anything, picking up a couple of classes in statistics will greatly improve your potential.
The Future of Fleet Management
Whether you’re a truck driver researching your industry or further pursuing a career in fleet management, staying informed aides communication between the two roles in a constantly changing work environment. Being a fleet manager requires wearing many hats. One way to succeed? Let technology lend you a hand.