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Looking Back Gives Us a Glimpse of What's Ahead

When you examine the seminal events of fleet management over the past 30 years, most were driven by changes in tax law, the introduction of governmental mandates,and adoption of new technologies. Looking to the future, we should probably expect more of the same. READ MORE

Will Technology Eliminate the ‘Personal Touch’ in Fleet Management?

Technology has transformed the way fleets communicate. One unintended consequence has been the increasing de-personalization of the interaction between fleet managers and drivers. In many ways, technology is slowly eliminating the “personal touch” to fleet management, which, since the inception of the profession, has been the hallmark of good fleet management, In the future, will personalized fleet management seem as quaint as the home delivery of milk? READ MORE

Report Identifies Possible Cause of Corrosion in Systems Storing and Dispensing ULSD

There have been persistent reports of severe and accelerated corrosion in storage tanks and dispensing equipment, ever since the EPA mandated the introduction of ultra-low sulfur diesel (ULSD). The Clean Diesel Fuel Alliance was formed, which commissioned a survey to investigate these reports. The results were released on Sept.5, 2012. The 146-page report says it has identified the possible cause of corrosion in systems stroing and dispensing ULSD. READ MORE

No Silver Bullet to Fleet Emission Reductions

Vehicle fleets are key contributors to a company’s overall greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, but they do offer a way to make quick emissions reductions. Since most companies replace approximately one-third of their fleet vehicles each year, they can structure selectors to favor more fuel-efficient models; however, there is a limit to this strategy. The reality is that there is no single silver bullet to fleet emissions reduction — it requires a multi-pronged approach. READ MORE

Fleet Policy vs. the Second Amendment

A new issue for fleet managers has emerged – the clash of fleet policy with an employee's constitutional right to carry a concealed weapon for self-protection at the workplace. Several high-profile cases highlight this conflict, which highlight the clash between Second Amendment advocates and workplace safety policy and expose the gray areas surrounding the issue. An increasing number of new laws being passed around the country, allow employees to legally carry firearms in their vehicles. READ MORE

Fleet Policy Compliance Crucial to Cost Control

Does your corporate culture encourage compliance with fleet policy? It should, because fleet policy is a crucial component of a company’s overall cost-control strategy. In my discussions with fleet management companies over the years, they tell me that the best managed fleets tend to be those that adhere to a written fleet policy. All too often, however, managers attempt to control fleet costs on the backend. The best time to control cost is before it occurs. READ MORE

Legitimate Concerns About Green Fleet Initiatives

Should the innovators of today, the market leaders of the next generation, create mobility based upon antiquated fuel? The long-term answer is no, but until then, we can’t hide our heads in the sand. There continue to be legitimate fleet concerns about going green. We can’t hope to truly “green” corporate America’s fleets (beyond simply being public relations statements) until these issues are resolved. READ MORE

Running Trucks Till the 'Wheels Fall Off' is Expensive and Counter-Productive

The cliché in fleet management is that trucks are kept in service until the wheels "fall off." In many cases, this isn’t too far from the truth. Typically, the more expensive the asset, the longer it will be kept in service, especially units upfitted with expensive auxiliary equipment. However, as study after study shows, extended truck replacement cycles often have the unintended consequence of resulting in greater long-term expenses and degradation in worker productivity. READ MORE

Policy Versus Guideline: The Trend Toward Flexible Replacement Cycles

Nearly all fleet-related expenses, both fixed and operating, are influenced by when a vehicle is taken out of service. A growing number of fleets are shifting to more flexible vehicle replacement cycles. Some fleets no longer call their replacement cycle a policy and instead call it a “guideline.” They want to reserve the right on determining when to take a vehicle out of service based on prevailing market conditions rather than predetermined mileage and months in service. READ MORE

Increased Upfit Volume & OEM Quality Holds Create Backlogs at Upfitters

Upfitters are feeling the pressure from the increase in the number of upfitted vehicles requiring a ship-thru, which is overwhelming some installers and body builders. Also, many upfitter-related OTD issues are the result of OEM quality holds. Oftentimes, upfitted units are held at the body company due to limited storage space at the assembly plants caused by quality hold backlogs. This prevents the release of upfitted units into OEM traffic for final delivery via ship-thru/freight re-entry. READ MORE

The Melding of Driver Safety and Fleet Sustainability Initiatives

There are many similarities between eco-driving techniques and safe-driving techniques. In fact, there’s a direct correlation between safe driving and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. It’s been proven: the safer the driver, the lower the GHG emissions. READ MORE

Game-Changing Fleet Megatrends

Within the context of fleet management, the concept of megatrends is used to identify economic and technological forces that can potentially alter our present-day industry in game-changing ways. Among the current megatrends that can potentially alter fleet as we know it are a higher interest rate environment, a higher taxation environment, leap-frogging technology, changing fleet demographics, and higher acquisition costs. READ MORE

Drivers are the Weak Link in License Plate Disposition

Although fleet management requires a strategic perspective, the reality is that it is a detail-oriented profession. The job requires paying attention to a multitude of details crucial to ensuring a well-run fleet. But, as the saying goes, the devil is in the details. A case in point is license plate disposition. READ MORE

FMCSA Seeks 445% Budget Hike to Increase CSA Enforcement

The Compliance, Safety & Accountability (CSA) program was developed to allow FMCSA and its state partners to contact more fleets and drivers, to use improved data to identify high-risk fleets and drivers, and apply a wider range of interventions to correct high-risk behavior. While admirable in its intent, CSA has created a huge impact on fleet management, since it applies to all trucks that operate interstate and require a US DOT number. READ MORE

Resetting Management's Future Resale Expectations

All good things eventually come to an end. So, too, will today’s abnormally high used-vehicle prices. Today's resale values are an anomaly caused by a decrease in used-vehicle inventory in the wholesale market, resulting from the extremely low sales of new vehicles from 2009-2011. You need to educate management that today’s resale values will decline. Otherwise, you run the risk of being management’s future scapegoat for declining resale values due to their misperceptions of the market. READ MORE

New Liability Exposure: Employee Drivers Using Medical Marijuana

Eighteen states and the District of Columbia have legalized medical cannabis (marijuana) or have decriminalized it. What are the fleet ramifications of drivers operating a company-provided vehicle while using medical marijuana under the care of a physician? What are the corporate liability issues if a driver with a medical marijuana prescription is involved in a preventable accident? Let's address these questions and determine what you can do to minimize your corporate liability exposure. READ MORE

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Author Bio

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Mike Antich

Editor and Associate Publisher

Mike has covered fleet management and remarketing for more than 20 years and entered the Fleet Hall of Fame in 2010.

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