Big businesses usually depend on their fleets when it comes to delivering goods and materials, answering service calls and meeting their customers and business partners. These companies usually have more than a few commercial vehicles that come with the most basic equipment and minimal comfort. Although fleets bring entrepreneurs a lot of money, they rarely invest their money back into upgrading their fleets and making them more efficient and reliable.
Unlike privately owned cars and trucks, fleet vehicles usually experience significant wear and tear in a very short period. Most of these vehicles are extensively used on a daily basis, which subjects them to various problems. In this article, we’ll describe how you can upgrade your business operation by upgrading your fleet vehicles and making them more reliable.
Why upgrade your fleet?
New fleet brings plenty of benefits to the business owner. The biggest benefit of all is fleet’s reliability, which minimizes entrepreneurs’ costs and allows them to direct their attention to their core business. In addition to this, the new fleet can also bring dozens of other tangible benefits to business owners, including:
- Improved technology – Advanced safety equipment like rear view cameras, hands-free smartphone connections, additional air bags reduce the like hood of driving accidents and help drivers to find safest and more efficient routes. Modern navigation systems also drastically decrease the delivery and service call time. This way, the new fleet improves employee satisfaction and serves as a great promotion for company’s products or services.
- Reduces the maintenance costs – Since fleet vehicles are used on a daily basis, they require regular maintenance. Fleet upgrades reduce company’s maintenance costs and extend vehicle’s lifespan. Costlier maintenance repairs can also negatively affect the delivery or service call time, which then reflects on the company’s overall reputation. New fleet allows companies to redirect some of their maintenance money to spreading their business operation and purchasing more vehicles.
- Improved fuel efficiency – Commercial fleets can create huge fuel costs. For some companies, these costs are as big as their payroll, which is why they need to find ways to improve their fleet’s fuel efficiency. The automotive industry is investing a serious effort in decreasing the overall fuel consumption, and their attempts are often supported by governments, which grant tax or registration fee reliefs to companies and individuals that purchase hybrid or electric cars. So, in some countries in addition to decreasing the fuel costs, green car fleets can also secure smaller taxes, registration and business fees.
What to look for?
Choosing the right vehicle is one of the most important tasks for every entrepreneur. When choosing fleet vehicles, the price is usually the least important criterion. The fleet needs to serve a purpose. That’s why contractors should always choose heavy duty trucks, and sales businesses should focus on small cars with high fuel efficiency.
To buy or to lease
Car manufacturers offer attractive discounts for fleet purchases. Unfortunately, these discounts are usually granted for companies that want to buy more than ten vehicles at once. Entrepreneurs who aren’t entitled to manufacturer’s incentive programs can always lease smaller fleets directly at the dealership. Of course, before leasing a fleet, entrepreneurs need to sit with their accountant, estimate all of their costs and decide whether this is a more affordable option than buying new or used fleet vehicles.
Safety and reliability are the most important criteria for choosing fleet vehicles. Still, there are dozens of small tricks that can decrease the price of running a fleet business. The whole operation requires advanced connectivity and GPS equipment and the constant support from the company’s headquarters or the dispatcher office. This way, companies will decrease the overall number of trips and make a better use of the vehicles in the field.
Good fleet organization also results in better fuel efficiency, decreased maintenance costs and improved customer satisfaction. That’s why entrepreneurs need to work on both upgrading their fleet and the way they use it in the field.