Vimcar recently conducted a study of over 1,000 senior decision-makers in SMEs to discover how businesses acted throughout the Covid pandemic, their outlook for the next 12 months and how they plan to overcome future challenges. Read on to learn how fleet checks have changed in the digital age, the disadvantages of not digitalising a fleet and the effect Covid-19 has had on fleet management in the UK.
The results of the survey clearly highlight the importance businesses now place on digitalising their fleets.
81% of those surveyed said that the Covid pandemic pushed them to adapt their business. This was primarily to project jobs and the health of their employees.
Moreover, 1 in 3 think that technology will be vital over the next 12 months. E-commerce sites, fleet tracker and management tools and customer service tools are the most popular forms of technology businesses are looking to invest in.
Download: Get A Free Company Vehicle Checklist Template UK For Drawing Up A Contract
Fleet Checks in the Digital Age
Performing routine fleet checks can help detect issues with fleet vehicles and avoid preventable accidents. Fleet checks keep vehicles running at optimum levels, which can also save businesses time and money in the long-run.
There are a number of issues that can arise when using paper logs to track vehicle checks. Drivers may forget to perform the checks, but the fleet manager won’t realise it until later when they’re sorting through the day’s paperwork.
Or, a driver will detect issues with a vehicle but because everything is written with pen and paper the fleet manager won’t be notified immediately.
Fleets that have been digitalised run more efficiently. Using an app gives fleet managers instant results of routine vehicle checks. Plus, they can see at a glance which drivers performed a vehicle check and which did not.
NOTE: SMEs still using paper logs can download Vimcar’s free UK company vehicle checklist template. Ensure that you are performing vehicle checks properly!
The Disadvantage of Not Digitalising a Fleet
SMEs that have not yet digitalised their fleet are at a significant disadvantage compared to those who have. Without fleet tracking technology, it’s impossible to tell where each driver is and whether they’re running on time or not. That also means customers can’t be provided with accurate ETAs. Nor can they be given concrete proof of delivery or pickup.
Without the help of digital fleet trackers, it’s also more difficult to optimise routes. Optimising routes not only reduces travel time for drivers, but it can also help decrease fuel expenses.
Not to mention that paper logs take longer to sift through and are easily misplaced. Plus, fleet managers must wait for paper logs to be handed in. This makes it difficult to react to issues in a timely manner.
The Effect of Covid on Fleet Management
Vimcar’s survey found that 1 in 3 SMEs digitalised their fleet during the Covid pandemic. Of those who digitalised their fleet, 94% agreed that adopting more technology has directly benefited their business.
The three main ways digitalising their fleets helped their businesses were: it made services more efficient, it improved the customer experience and it made employees’ lives easier.
Over the next 12 months, the primary challenges SMEs are expecting to encounter include Coronavirus restrictions, financial issues and high customer standards. To overcome these expected challenges, 39% of those surveyed said they plan on investing in the best possible technology.
SMEs in the travel and transport, sales and media and marketing fields are most likely to install fleet trackers in the next 12 months.
Ready to Digitalise Your Fleet Checks?
Fleets can no longer remain in the stone age of paper logs. Every UK company should use a vehicle checklist template. Digitalising a fleet is the best way to improve fleet checks, run a more efficient business and overcome challenges associated with the Covid pandemic.