Fleet technology and maintenance are a part of the fleet industry that can be controlled or manipulated to better impact your fleet. With organized planning and the right resources fleet technology and maintenance can set your fleet company apart from the competition and your fleet company can run with ease.
Fleet maintenance encompasses a variety of vehicle care from unexpected repairs, such as broken fuel pumps, to regular upkeep, such as oil changes and tire rotations. No matter the make, model, or age of the vehicle, maintenance is expected in order to run any kind of fleet. Being prepared for circumstantial maintenance and routine maintenance is part of the fleet business. There are several tools and tactics to organize fleet maintenance which require management decisions on how to address fleet maintenance.
One major decision for fleet maintenance is whether to have on-site fleet maintenance or outsource fleet maintenance. Some fleet companies choose to do a hybrid maintenance option. Keep in mind that there are also traveling mechanics that can travel to the site, which could be considered a hybrid option. Knowing your fleet and researching the costs associated with on-site maintenance and outsourcing maintenance is essential for making that decision.
On-Site Fleet Vehicle Maintenance vs. Outsourcing Fleet Vehicle Maintenance
|On-Site Fleet Vehicle Maintenance
|Outsourcing Fleet Vehicle Maintenance
|-Land and infrastructure
|-Paying for drivings to transport vehicle
– Third-party expenses
|-Cheaper for larger fleet companies
-Easy access to quick maintenance and repairs
– Less vehicle downtime
-Control and flexibility
-Mechanics work on the same vehicles (become specialists)
|-Cheaper for small fleet companies
– Multiple locations nationwide
-Outsider resource and knowledge
On-Site Fleet Vehicle Maintenance
On-Site vehicle maintenance is a great option for larger fleet sizes that require constant maintenance of varied vehicles. Especially when those vehicles consist of a diverse range of brands. Mechanics or technicians are always available to work on vehicles which provide more control for the fleet business and more flexibility.
On-site fleet vehicle maintenance also provides technicians who are only working on your business’s fleet and not other vehicles. Like doctors, the technician becomes a specialist in the fleet because the mechanics will be working on the same vehicles.
The downside to on-site fleet vehicle maintenance is that a mechanic’s garage can be a hazardous environment. On-site maintenance has liability. Obviously, insurance is an option, however, insurance is an added expense.
Outsourcing Fleet Vehicle Maintenance
Outsourcing fleet vehicle maintenance is good for companies who have a new fleet with vehicles all of the same brand. Outsourcing through the dealer can be more efficient considering those technicians work on that brand of vehicle all the time.
Like the specialist that on-site maintenance will provide, if the fleet consists of the same brand, the dealer will also be a specialist on those vehicles. New vehicles likely come with warranties as well, which can become a cheaper option for that fleet.
Outsourcing fleet vehicle maintenance reduces the risk of an accident happening in the shop. That risk is transferred to the mechanic’s company being used. Outsourcing eliminates that liability.
Most mechanic companies have multiple locations nationwide. If an accident happens or a vehicle needs repairs while away, most likely there will be a shop nearby or at least closer than the on-site shop.
Lastly, outsourcing fleet vehicle maintenance provides outsider insight and relationships. Doing business with a company externally provides a completely different resource outside of the fleet company. Many managers of mechanic shops are familiar with the fleet industry. These relationships create bargaining power and a network.
Fleet Technology Hardware
Truck maintenance hardware is a beneficial investment for fleet maintenance. Truck maintenance hardware can work alongside truck maintenance software to optimize fleet technology. There are several fleet technology hardware tools that would be best suited for pairing with fleet technology software.
- Heavy duty scanners
- GPS tracking devices
- Dash cameras
Heavy Duty Truck Scanner
Heavy-duty truck scanners are easy to use and can effectively diagnose heavy-duty vehicles. Heavy-duty truck scanners can efficiently monitor the engine and transmission with live data. This is a great tool for drivers to have on hand to monitor their vehicle for repairs and maintenance. Most importantly, keep the driver safe.GPS Tracking Devices
Gps tracking devices are essential for monitoring fleet vehicle locations. Paired with the right software GPS tracking devices can be used to track fleet ETA time, notify management of delays, and correspond with customers about the whereabouts of their delivery. Not only does GPS tracking provide better communication but it monitors theft.
Dash cameras offer great benefits for fleets. An essential part of fleet vehicle maintenance is safe drivers. Dash cameras are a tool to monitor fleet drivers for safe and proper driving tactics. Some dash cameras provide a 360 visual of the vehicle’s surroundings along with a view of the cab. Not only do dash cameras encourage safe driving, but can also be used to protect drivers from liability if an accident occurs.
Fleet Technology Software
Technology in the fleet industry is advancing significantly and it is crucial to stay up to date with the latest software to make the fleet process more efficient. There are software companies available that are usually subscription-based businesses that offer software as a service. These services offer a variety of implementations to improve fleet management and fleet maintenance.
Samsara is a service that provides living tracking, safety training, and implementation, as well as alerts for maintenance. Samsara is an integrated platform that works well for fleet management. Samsara has an extensive list of benefits such as an increase in productivity, sustainability, and efficiency. Samsara also allows your fleet company to communicate with location and delays with customers providing an overall better customer experience.
- GPS tracking
- notifying customers of delays
- Theft notification
Whip Around is another great software. Like Samsara, Whip Around is software as a service. Whip Around provides maintenance, inspections, compliance, and reporting software. Whip around is a great way to manage fleet assets and makes the fleet management process easier.
- Fleet data reporting
Using fleet technology to your advantage is a great way to improve your fleet maintenance and management process. Fleet technology enhances the overall efficiency and effectiveness of the business. Maintenance is a routine part of the process that does not need to come with the headache of paperwork and poor communication. Samsara and Whip Around are software programs that will better organize your business.