Struggling to find hidden costs in your fleet budget? Consider how de-centralized fleet management could be impacting your organization's bottom line.
Budgeting season is here, a time when your entire organization comes together to plan for the years ahead and build more fiscal opportunities for growth. For your fleet team, that may look like a traditional ask: figuring out how much you can allocate to cover things like vehicle purchases, repairs, driver management, and fuel. But if you're not looking beyond the norm, you could be missing out on valuable opportunities to show off your fleet as an organizational investment.
What if your fleet could drive significant savings for your entire business?
It's time to show what your fleet is made of. The first step is actually getting to the bottom of your vehicles, to understand your essential costs, the spend you could do without, and to uncover those fees that often go unnoticed but dramatically inflate your budget.
Uncover hidden costs
Determining your fleet budget may seem like standard operating procedure, but let's be real: nothing is standard in business right now. Your fleet has had to deal with a lot in the last two budgeting cycles. Maybe your drivers have spent a lot less time on the road; maybe your vehicles are putting in a significant amount of work delivering essential needs to newly habitual work-from-homers. And if you're operating a fleet across multiple locations, it may have been harder to monitor and control driver behaviors or maintenance schedules all while social distancing. Whatever the case is, things have changed, and if you're still looking at your fleet budget as you always have, you are missing out.
The key is to find the costs that are sneaking through your budget and impacting your overall spend.
Building a holistic approach to budgeting means that you are able to identify major pain points by comparing every element of your fleet as a whole. By comparing and contrasting things like parts, maintenance scheduling, vehicle ordering, driver training, fuel management, upfits, and more, you can better understand what costs are and turn your fleet budget into an investment, not just an expense.
ARI's vehicle management processes put the focus on the entire lifecycle of the fleet, studying maintenance, leasing and purchasing, remarketing, garage management, supply chain, accident response, and more to understand how the holistic approach can give fleet professionals the power to better navigate their budget. The secret lies in a tool that only grows more valuable over time: data.
Dig into the data
Your vehicle data is the powerhouse of your fleet. Every one of your vehicles generates millions of data points every single year, collecting information on everything from fuel usage and driver habits on the road to vehicle lifecycle behavior and downtime. But how do you rein in all of that information to actually serve a purpose?
The answer to that question is two-fold: data integration and telematics technology.
Equipping your fleet with telematics tools makes data integration a seamless process, turning your vehicles into their own super computers that virtually crunch the numbers for you. When combined with a resource like ARI insights®, you get real-time access to your vehicle information. From there you can work with your fleet management team to identify patterns, correlations, and surprise issues that could be costing you.
With the vehicle supply chain likely to be disrupted for the foreseeable future, data can help you manage your vehicles for the long-run, so you don't run into downtime caused by a lack of resources. ARI works with fleet professionals to study their fleet data and understand how a change in driver habits caused by the pandemic can lead to changes in vehicle management.
Maybe you need to adjust your maintenance schedules to better reflect a busier delivery team, or maybe you need to update your vehicle use cycle so that less of your fleet is sitting idle. We work with you to understand how your past fleet behaviors can change the future of your fleet in a post-COVID world.
Ready to get your budget together for 2022? Contact ARI today to get started on the path to a more fiscally secure fleet.
Originally posted on Work Truck Online