Fleet Management for Small Business
Success depends on how well you manage the associated costsDeveloping a fleet management system for your business is not an easy project. It is important to conduct thorough research now to save yourself headaches and money in the long run.
Luckily, there are federal and private organizations to provide the information and services you'll need to manage your fleet effectively and safely. Alternatively, there are companies that offer fleet management services to take care of everything from insurance to safety compliance to maintenance and repair of your vehicles. If you barely have time to focus on your organization's core competencies, you'll want to consider outsourcing these services.
The three most important things you'll need to remember when using these resources to develop a fleet management strategy are:
- Conduct a lease versus buy analysis on the vehicles
- It takes hard work and cash to hire the best truckers
- Decide how much you can outsource to a vendor or keep in-house with technology
Buy vs. lease
Fleet management softwareDepending on how fancy you want to get, these programs can provide scheduling, tracking, and reporting on fuel, maintenance and vehicle wear.
You won't feel usedTrucks depreciate as quickly as cars do, and you can save a bundle by leasing or purchasing pre-owned vehicles. Many of these vehicles are in "like new" condition, so you won't have to compromise reliability.
Tag your stuffA surefire way to keep track of your load is through the use of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags so you know where your products are at all times.
Hire grease monkeysOne way to cut down on maintenance costs is to hire drivers who can fix their own vehicles if there are maintenance issues.
License and registration, pleaseIt is important that your fleet drivers have everything they need if they are pulled over by the cops.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Chase offers commercial auto insurance for small- to medium-size businesses that covers injuries and damages to your property and the property of others involved if there is an accident.
- Keep in mind that the quality of vehicles you deploy is a factor in the quality of truckers you attract to drive them.
- Decide whether to lease or buy by figuring out how much cash you can put down up front.
- The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) offers tips on how to increase your fleet's fuel efficiency.
- Keep up-to-date on current transportation rules and regulations.
- Use your fleet as a vehicle for direct and indirect response advertising by placing your logo on the truck, trailer and truckers' uniforms.
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