Transport is a crucial part of any sort of business, it is the backbone of the economy. The need for fleet drivers is therefore very high in high intensity ergonomic zones. It is not only essential because good need to be transported but also as a means of moving human capital around. The most salient features of a good transport system are efficiency and the lowest possible cost i.e affordability over everything else. This affordability is considered a plus only if it doesn’t interfere with the overall performance.
Fleet managers make it their responsibility to make sure that their fleet is well oiled, well fueled and well endowed. They have to overlook any factors that will otherwise affect the output and are willing to spend a little extra if it means getting the most out of the services profitable by the fleet. That unfortunately extends to fuel as well. Something as precious as fuel needs to be handled carefully and approached smartly because it will ultimately decide the trajectory of the profit margin but more often than not, fleet managers struggle to make cuts in this department, fail to save fuel and end up with either wasting fuel or losing it to snide thieves, sometimes without even realizing and/or noticing.
If you feel like somewhere or the other you are victim of fuel theft, it is not uncommon. Refined fuel is a valuable resource and is therefore sometimes the reason for momentary dishonesty amongst drivers. It is all the more important to set an example.
- Fuel Card – It is no surprise that one of the ways to save fuel is to keep it in check. If you know when, where and how much fuel each driver is using for each vehicle, there’s no scope for cheating you out of it. The fuel card also checks in with the exact location of the purchase every single time which means that you will not have to spend extra time locating where any of the vehicles is.
- Planning ahead – To make any delivery or reach any destination a vehicle needs to take a particular route. Making sure that this route has only necessary stops and not unnecessary deviations is essential. If the driver is taking self – catering every time he takes the vehicle out, it will definitely upset your fuel budget. Therefore, planning a route, coordinating with your fleet and making sure they do what is necessary to stay on that route is very important in fuel management.
- Avoiding lags – Highways and routes going through densely populated areas are bound to have a lot of traffic which in turn means that the initial time planned to make the journey will be increased. More time on the road = more fuel usage. Add traffic jams to the equation and you manage to increase the cost by 12%. This can be avoided by avoiding traffic. It will save cost and
- Taking care of your vehicles – All else will fail to give you the desired results if your vehicles and specifically their engines are not well maintained. The fuel consumption by any engine that is not properly serviced and taken care of is substantially more than the one that has received proper attention. A good engine will also mean that your ride will be a better experience.
- Keeping tabs – If you keep tabs on your fleet drivers regularly they are likely to feel that they are being held accountable for every single action and thus will behave accordingly. This prevents the worst: fuel theft. How fuel theft is an issue for the fleet? Refined oils are much more usable and cost much more than crude oils, therefore they are more likely to be stolen. Therefore, keeping live tabs on the locations give you the upper hand.
- Keeping the fuel safe – Now how can fleet owners can take advantage of anti fuel theft devices to prevent fuel theft which will in turn improve fuel efficiency and also is a great fuel saving tip for the fleet’s profitability? The answer is not that hard to find. Devices like GPS are excellent for this purpose. You know exactly where they are and when/for how long they were at a location. To prevent fuel theft, the ideal way is to know how much fuel was refilled on each purchase/stop that was made by the drivers. Keeping records of how much fuel a vehicle consumes will help you calculate how much it should use how much it will use in a journey or at least you will have an estimate. If that figure is tampered with, you’ll know.
- Don’t haul more than what’s necessary – Every vehicle has a limit of weight to carry – both for performance and safety purposes. Following this limit will help you save fuel by not putting extra pressure on the engine and by extension, fuel consumption.
- Stay connected – Communication is one of the most important aspects. Talking to your drivers will help you help them with making the right decisions at any given moment.
- Make use of the Start/Stop feature – The start/stop feature enables you to turn off the engine at places like traffic signals or any type of stops where the vehicle doesn’t need the engine. Remembering this small detail will enable you to save on fuel and go green as well. Burning the fuel while the vehicle is not in motion puts stress on the engine as well.
- Take necessary breaks – Taking a minute to blow off some steam is not only important for your drivers but for the vehicles as well. The longer the journey, the more strategically placed breaks there should be. The vehicle might heat up if put to use for long periods of time therefore it needs to rest once in a while. Good ventilation and A/C cooling is also important for the engine as well the console. Technical errors are more likely to happen in case of overheating so make sure that the drivers know everything about how to relieve the engine.