Managing a Work Truck Fleet in 10 Easy Steps
Managing a Work Truck Fleet in 10 Easy Steps
Buying a fleet of work trucks and managing the vehicles are two completely different things. If you’ve recently acquired or revamped your commercial vehicle stock, here are some suggestions that will help your light, medium, and heavy commercial trucks on track:
The biggest factor that determines if your work trucks are a profit or liability to your company is their overhead cost after the initial purchase of your work fleet. Focusing on economy fuel is a must. From choosing vehicles that get great fuel mileage is imperative. Past that, you can adopt strategies such as controlling the speed in which the trucks are driven by placing governors on them, keeping maintenance up on them, and using apps to find the most cost-efficient pumps to purchase gas or diesel fuel at. In addition, you may want to consider diesel fuel vehicles over gasoline ones, economy gasoline vehicles, or even alternative fuel vehicles. It’s worth considering V-8 vehicles versus gas guzzling ones, even if a little power is lost. By taking into account all the factors that determine what you’ll be sinking into your work trucks for fuel will definitely help you ensure that your work fleet vehicles will make more money than they cost in the long haul.
A number of states and municipalities are adopting anti-idling laws. That means you can be slapped with fines if your trucks idle for any length of time. The rule targets the primary propulsion engine from idling for more than five consecutive minutes at any given time when the vehicle isn’t in motion. Continually shutting off any vehicle and turning it back on can be very costly in fuel. To remedy the situation, you may want to think of acquiring idle shutdown systems for your trucks. The systems are available for light-duty trucks as well as medium and heavy-duty trucks as well.
Choosing Right Sizes of Engines and Trucks
While many companies are downsizing their fleets due to the cost of operating them, often times, rightsizing them can be the most optimal step. The 1-ton work truck you have could possibly be replaced by a 3/4- ton truck that is capable of doing the same work as the 1-ton truck. The smaller your engine and truck body, the less you will be out in fuel. You will also save in the initial cost of the vehicle. A knowledgeable work truck salesperson is able to assist you in comparing all the vehicle specs in order to determine the ultimate design you can get by with so you don’t purchase more power than you really need and therefore save money from the price tag of the vehicle to the fuel you put into it.
Acquisition of Trucks
By keeping your existing trucks running longer, you will save the cost of purchasing new ones. That means you’ll need to keep up with the maintenance of them so they stay in good running condition. There does come a time, however, that keeping a truck on the road takes more money than purchasing a new or used work truck does, so you’ll need to make an informed decision based on the cost and frequency of repairs. Keeping an updated performance log is a must in order to make regular assessments. You may also want to consider adding extra features to a commercial vehicle so it performs more jobs so you can avoid purchasing a new vehicle to do that job. For instance, if you need to haul things from a landscaping site, you might think of adding a trailer onto your landscaping truck rather than having two separate vehicles to do the two jobs.
There’s a new generation of work vehicles that can help you get the job done more economically. Now 13.0L diesel engines are able to produce the same horsepower and torque once limited to 15.0L engines. These upfitted work vehicles cost less to begin with, have less weight, and use less fuel. Disc brakes are also saving business owners tons of money because disc brakes are lighter than drum brakes. They not only meet federal motor vehicle safety standards that are now in place, they save on maintenance and fuel cost. By upfitting existing work vehicles, you’ll save a bundle.
Multi-Tasking Modular Bodies
By optimizing a chassis’ application and the interchanging to match the vehicles’ field of duty, you’ll often be able to avoid the purchase of a second vehicle. The use of lighter and stronger materials on any given work truck can maximize the efficiency and cut down on the wear and tear of the trucks. Rather than pushing a vehicle to its limit by having it perform a task it is not set up to do, consider having the necessary work done on the truck so that it actually becomes the multi-purpose vehicle in needs to be. You can create a vehicle that interchanges depending on the job it is needed for. Cab and chassis work trucks allow for such customization so be sure to utilize the option when possible.
The demand for used work vehicles is great. When purchasing a new work truck, consider the value of it as a used truck so you can sell when you are ready and invest the money into buying a new one. If you are stuck between deciding on one truck or another, by checking the resale values of them, you’ll typically be able to make a wise decision. Some features raise resale values while others are more niche and make the vehicle more difficult to sell. Trade-in value works into the equation in the same manner. Features such as fuel economy and added extras generally help determine the resale or trade-in value and what the likelihood of having a high demand for the vehicle will be.
The price of having work trucks maintained has sky rocketed. Finding a reliable place to service and upkeep your commercial vehicles is more important than ever. You’ll also save money by purchasing fleet trucks that require less in the way of maintenance. Preventative maintenance is estimated to cost about 5 percent more each year, so it is vital to take maintenance cost into consideration when making good choices. Emissions regulations add to the ever-increasing cost of maintenance too because you are now required to keep your trucks in even better condition than ever before which can cost a pretty penny. If your used work vehicle is costing too much to keep on the road, buying a new work truck may be the smartest thing to do. By doing the math, you’ll ensure you come out ahead.
Tires and Recaps
The cost of oil and rubber typically determines the cost of tires and recaps. When these commodities are at their prime rate, you can lose more than you +can afford to by keeping up with changing out your tires. Many work vehicles tend to come with tires that are larger than are necessary. That adds an extra cost when replacing them. By downsizing tires when practical, you’ll save a good bit of cash. Sometimes the opposite is true though. If the tires you are running are too small, you’ll find yourself replacing and repairing them too frequently as well. Buying high quality tires to begin with is always optimal so they last longer. You might also want to consider recapping rather than replacing when you can.
Telematics is the technology of managing your work trucks through a program that takes a look at fuel management, maintenance, safety, time, and other factors that determine your input and output of funds. There are many telematics applications on the market and by checking into them, you are likely to find one that suits the individual needs your company has. It’s easy to learn the program and to coordinate with your workforce so they do their part too. You will then be able to track your trucks and keep up with all the stats on each one of them in one easy location. You can then put strategies into play like establishing the best routes for your drivers, finding the best prices in fuel, and so forth. Technology is making it easier than ever to manage your work truck fleet in the most efficient ways possible so you might as well take advantage of the advancements.
In the Long Haul
Effectively managing your work truck fleet by using the simple suggestions above can help your business keep rolling with minimal cost so you can spend less and profit more. MJ TruckNation is professionally equipped with knowledgeable and helpful team members who can help you take your business to the next level by maximizing the performance of the money you put into your commercial vehicles. We are always available to help you make excellent decisions about your work truck fleet so you can make money in the long haul because that’s what it’s all about.