Reducing vehicle downtime should be a priority for all fleets, regardless of size. It means you’ll be able to reduce costs and be in a better position to meet deadlines. Here’s five ways to reduce it…
1) Driver Training
What causes vehicle downtime? Ultimately, it comes down to wear and tear or accidents. In both cases, drivers themselves can play a large role. The way they drive fleet vehicles is enormously important. Late braking, harsh acceleration and incorrect gear changes can all accelerate the rate at which the car deteriorates. In addition, these behaviours are inherently dangerous and increase the likelihood of an accident. Offer your drivers training and ensure they’re aware of your expectations.
2) Maintenance And Repair
Regular and maintenance and repairs can be expensive. But they’re almost never as expensive as vehicle downtime; which can cost an average-sized fleet around £700 a day, not including repair costs themselves. Develop and stick to a regular servicing schedule. Some checks can actually be carried out internally, such as those concerning tyre pressures, oil levels and light bulbs. The key is to identify small problems before they become big ones.
3) New Vehicles
This isn’t an option for all fleets, but it’s certainly a consideration and the ideal strategy. Newer vehicles are less likely to brake down or experience mechanical faults. That’s a simple fact. Whilst they’re naturally more expensive than used vehicles, they can help a fleet save money in the long-term. However, utilising data is crucial in determining viability and potential savings.
Whilst training your drivers and ensuring they’re aware of expected driving standards is vital, it’s often not enough. You need to know how they’re behaving whilst behind the wheel. Telematics can be useful in seeing what they’re getting right and what they’re getting wrong. In addition, it’s capable of shedding light on a fleet’s overall fuel economy. The technology is getting cheaper and more advanced all of the time; it’s definitely worth investing in.
5) Vehicle Downtime Data
A fleet is only as good as its data. Whether it’s concerning driver behaviour, fuel costs or route management, it’s always vital. Vehicle downtime is no different. You need to understand how much it costs the fleet, which vehicles are most likely to fail (and why) and the most efficient methods of addressing it. Don’t treat each brake down or accident as an isolated event, look at them as a part of a single trend. How efficient are your chosen garages, which models are the least reliable, what are the causes of accidents? With a clearer picture, you’ll be able to devise a clearer strategy.
Fleet Driver Safety: Everything You Should Be Doing – https://www.autoservefleet.co.uk/latest-news/fleet-driver-safety/
Failed MOTs: The Most Likely Reasons You’ll Face One – http://autoserve.co.uk/motoring-news/failed-mots/