Acquiring vehicles is only the first step to maintaining a safe, efficient fleet. Creating a comprehensive fleet maintenance schedule is crucial to keeping your vehicles road-safe and increasing their ROI. With proper fleet planning, your business can grow more easily over time and you can avoid unexpected maintenance costs.
This article will answer the following:
- What is fleet maintenance
- How to create a maintenance strategy
- How can a fleet tracking system help with fleet planning efforts
What Is Fleet Maintenance?
In short, fleet maintenance is the process of keeping vehicles operational and road-safe. A fleet maintenance program should not only address vehicle needs as they crop up, but it should also include preventative measures to avoid unexpected breakdowns and repairs.
There are many aspects to a fleet maintenance schedule that should be taken into account. Some important tasks to include in your maintenance schedule include:
- Checking tyre pressures
- Tracking mileage
- Monitoring fuel use
- Arranging vehicle maintenance
- Managing vehicle fuel cards
- Overseeing vehicle down time
- Managing vehicle keys
- …. and so much more!
Read more: BVRLA Fair Wear And Tear Guide
How to Create an Effective Maintenance Strategy?
The exact fleet planning practices that your business should implement will vary depending on your fleet’s unique needs and goals. However, you can use the service schedule provided by your vehicles’ manufacturer as a jumping off point when creating a fleet maintenance strategy.
In addition, you should consider the following when drafting a maintenance strategy:
- How will you monitor and control the use of your vehicles?
- How will business use and personal use of vehicles be defined?
- How should drivers be trained to ensure proper usage of your vehicles?
- What documents do drivers need to operate your vehicles? How often will your business check these documents?
- How will you monitor the operational safety of your vehicles? Which parts of the vehicle will be checked daily, weekly, monthly and yearly?
- How will driving hours be recorded?
- How will you monitor and record vehicle wear and tear?
- What punishments will be administered for vehicle misuse?
- What rewards will be administered for good driving behaviour?
- How will your fleet maintenance strategy be communicated to your drivers?
For Beginners & Intermediates: Free Fleet Manager Guide
How Does Fleet Tracking Help with Fleet Planning?
If you’ve read this far and are worrying about how you’ll manage to implement and maintain such a thorough fleet planning strategy, don’t panic. Utilising a fleet tracking system like Fleet Geo can significantly lighten the burden of maintaining an efficient, road-safe fleet.
There are a few key ways that fleet tracking helps with fleet planning. With a fleet tracking system, you can examine routes retrospectively and optimise them to reduce idling times, avoid Clean Air Zones and ensure drivers are taking the most efficient routes.
Additionally, a fleet tracking system also helps identify vehicle misuse, such as excessive speeding or using vehicles for personal trips.
Tracking your vehicles makes it easier to reduce the mileage on your vehicles. The fewer miles your vehicles travel, the less fuel they consume and less maintenance is required. A digital fleet tracking system like Fleet Geo makes this level of vehicle tracking so much easier than if you tried using outdated paper logs.
Fleet Planning & Maintenance for a More Efficient Fleet
Maintaining a road-safe, efficient fleet involves more than just acquiring vehicles and taking them to the shop when they need repairs. It’s important that your business implements a fleet maintenance schedule that accounts for every aspect of your vehicles’ operations and usage.
A fleet tracking system like Fleet Geo makes it easier to manage a fleet by automatically tracking your vehicles’ mileage, routes and more.