For businesses required to own and operate a sizeable fleet of vehicles, herein lies one of the most extensive and on-going operational costs of all. Looking after a single vehicle can be troublesome enough, but it’s not until you multiply these costs several, or perhaps even dozens of times over that you realise how much of a bottomless piggy-bank a car or van can really be.
However, the good news to come out of all the doom and gloom is that there are in fact plenty of ways and means by which a good deal of money can be saved on fleet operations, day in and day out. And these aren’t the kinds of penny-pinching savings that happen behind the scenes either – these are genuine, noticeable and valuable savings you’ll be more than glad you tapped into.
Here’s an overview of just a few examples to illustrate the point:
Consider Professional Fleet Management
First and foremost, if you haven’t already looked into the fleet vehicle maintenance companies on the market, now’s the time to do so. In one swoop, the right contract with the right third-party provider sees all manner of responsibilities shifted – everything from vehicle maintenance to financing to telematics to fuel management to efficiency and right through to route efficiency tracking. Add all of these together and the savings compared to the in-house option can be quite spectacular, especially when considering that the quality of each facet will be vastly superior to that of the DIY option.
The idea of wrapping your fleet cars in bold and bright adverts may seem like nothing more than yet another expense, but in the bigger picture it can in fact be a Godsend for cost savings. The reason being that not only will you be effectively travelling around in a mobile billboard, but the adverts themselves offer an effective protective shield for the paintwork underneath. So when the time finally comes to sell-off the fleet vehicles or part-ex them for newer models, they’ll be worth a heck of a lot more than had their paintwork been exposed to all manner of scratches and scuffs.
First and foremost, if sourcing your own tyres, it’s a good idea to get out of the habit of only ever buying brand new tyres every time a replacement is needed. Sure, they’re guaranteed for a couple of years, but will nonetheless cost you about five-times the price of a part-worn alternative which is by rights pretty much brand new. From the right vendor, branded part-worn tyres can save you up to 80% of tyre replacements costs with absolutely no risk to safety or performance at all.
Find yourself and your drivers a good parking app for the UK, in order to locate the cheapest – or ideal free – parking no matter where it is you’re going. Businesses blow tens of millions of pounds ever year on nothing more than leaving their vehicles stationary for short periods of time here and there, often oblivious to the fact that free parking was on offer just a street or two away. Massive savings and a bit of extra exercise for drivers – a double-ended bonus!
Unless you’re in a line of work that makes it simply impossible to avoid doing so, there’s really nothing to gain from sending drivers anywhere at rush hour. It may take some serious time and work to map out a workable strategy, but the amount of money wasted and CO2 damage done to the environment by slow running traffic at the busy hours of the day can be simply astonishing. And what’s more, the constant stopping and starting while waiting around in traffic jams doesn’t do the vehicles in your fleet any good either, so try to think more carefully about journey timing.
Last but not least, it’s a proven fact that the less you spend on things like engine repairs and periodic maintenance, the more you’ll end up shelling out in the long-run. Not only are poorly repaired cars less efficient to run on the whole, they’re also vastly more likely to break down again in the near future and to crap out on you once and for all sooner than they might have. Keeping a fleet in excellent repair may not seem like the best way to go at the time, but it’s the only way to go to minimise expenses – especially if doing so with the help of a professional fleet management partner.