Increasing fleet efficiency

Managing a fleet of vehicles can be challenging, fleet efficiency is a key metric that helps fleet managers to identify any issues and use this information to improve performance. In this article we take a look at what fleet efficiency means and how it can be broken down into categories. We also look at tips on managing and improving each aspect of fleet efficiency.

Fuel efficiency

Fuel efficiency is one of the most important efficiency measures for a vehicle fleet. Every fleet spends a significant amount of money on fuel, reducing fuel spend and increasing efficiency is a key part of a fleet manager's role. Effective management of fuel efficiency can be achieved through the use of a fuel card. Fuel cards allow businesses to view fuel expenditure by vehicle, driver and the location where the fuel was purchased. Analysing this data can help businesses improve overall fuel efficiency by identifying vehicles or drivers with a high fuel expenditure. Additional training may be required for these drivers, or their vehicles may need maintenance or replacement. Routes can also be altered to try to improve the fuel efficiency of drivers if the data shows that fuel consumption is higher than expected. This data is available online and can be accessed at any point, automatic reports are created from this data to make data analysis and interpreting quicker and easier.

fuelGenie fuel cards also help to save businesses money by directing drivers to low-cost supermarket petrol stations. Drivers can fill up at Tesco, Morrisons and Sainsbury’s forecourts, on average this can save a business over 3p per litre. Take a look at our petrol station finder to locate your nearest petrol station or plan your drivers’ routes.

In addition to the online petrol station finder, the fuelGenie app allows drivers to locate their nearest fuelGenie eligible petrol station using their phone, the app also provides petrol pricing so drivers can ensure they choose low cost fuel. Find out more about the fuelGenie app and how it can help to improve fuel efficiency for your fleet.

Safety efficiency

Keeping drivers and other motorists safe is a top priority for fleet managers. Long hours or poorly trained drivers can result in accidents, putting themselves and other road users at risk. Safety efficiency can be measured and monitored by considering several different factors that represent driver safety. These include, number of accidents, number of speeding tickets, number of near misses, number of driver complaints, vehicle scrapes, and vehicle brake wear and tear. By reviewing all of these factors a fleet manager can gain a valuable understanding of fleet safety. This information can be used to address any issues and prevent further accidents or near misses.

We recommend taking a note of all of these factors and charting them to gain clarity on the expected and average number of incidents, especially if you have a large fleet. You can then put procedures in place to minimise the risk to your drivers and increase the safety efficiency of your fleet.

Time efficiency

In this instance we will be considering time efficiency for a fleet that delivers goods. Time efficiency refers to how quickly a driver can get to their destination and perform deliveries; how many deliveries are performed in a day and if the deliveries are on time. In order to improve time efficiency for a fleet each driver’s route needs to be carefully planned and managed. This can be done with the aid of fleet management software. Along with driver management, and vehicle management, many fleet management software providers have inbuilt telematics and route planning. Track the amount of time drivers spend behind the wheel, automatically advise on the best routes for current traffic conditions, plan rest stops, fuel stops, and much more. For larger fleets comprehensive fleet management software can improve efficiency significantly. It can also help to reduce the time spent on planning and organising drivers and deliveries.

Balancing fleet efficiency

Each element of fleet efficiency works together to provide an overall idea of how well a fleet is performing. There may also be other elements that are specific to your fleet or industry to consider. The key to maximising each of these efficiencies is balance. To maximise time efficiency drivers may work overtime and become tired, this could then have a detrimental impact on safety efficiency or fuel efficiency. Keeping the balance between these efficiencies is a key part of the fleet managers role.

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