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How Fleet Planning Can Save Your Business Time and Money

We’re all familiar with the saying “if you fail to plan, then you plan to fail.” That old adage can be applied to many parts of life, but it’s especially true in the trucking and transportation industry. Not only can fleet planning save your company money, it can also increase driver safety and compliance, reduce downtime and increase efficiency, all of which can help ensure you achieve your goals. 

We’ll go into each of these areas in more detail below, but before we dive in, let’s start by defining what fleet planning is.

 

What is Fleet Planning

Fleet planning involves taking proactive steps to operate a fleet of vehicles more efficiently by finding ways to lower costs, minimize investment risks, improve productivity and promote safety.

 

Why is Fleet Planning Needed

There are countless reasons why fleet planning is an absolute must. After all, we’re talking about a lot of really expensive large vehicles where many things can go wrong if you’re not proactive in taking care of them. Aside from costly mechanical problems with the vehicles themselves, a lack of planning can cause delivery deadlines to be missed which can hurt your reputation and even cause you to lose customers.

Here’s just one example of why fleet planning is so important. Imagine you’re a fleet manager and you get a frantic call from one of your drivers. Through no fault of his own, he’s been in a minor accident and he’s worried he’s not going to get his cargo delivered on time. Because you’ve been proactive in your fleet maintenance planning, you can tell him everything’s going to be OK. You send another vehicle out ASAP, confident that it is in tip-top shape and ready to hit the road, and it is. The delivery goes off without a hitch, the customer is happy and your good name is intact. 

 

Benefits of Fleet Planning

The benefits of fleet planning can be seen in every aspect of your business from your finances to the morale of your drivers. While it can’t prevent every problem, simply knowing there is a plan in place can eliminate a lot of stress for everyone on your team. That’s why as a fleet manager, it is well worth your time to create detailed plans and to revisit them periodically because there’s always room for improvement, right?

We’ve listed a few of the key benefits of fleet planning below, though there are certainly many more out there. 

 

Save Money

One of the biggest ways to save money is by having a preventative maintenance plan in place to keep your vehicles running at peak performance. Although maintenance activities do cost money, they’re usually much cheaper than repairing something that is damaged or broken.

Neglecting to perform tasks like oil changes or tire pressure checks can cause a lot of unnecessary wear and tear on your vehicles and force their engines to work harder. In turn, your fleet will become less fuel-efficient, and with gas prices constantly on the rise, those expenses can add up fast.

 

Increased Driver Safety & Compliance

Your drivers are the face of your company. If they’re operating your vehicles unsafely, they’re not only putting your reputation at risk, they’re also a potential danger to themselves and other motorists.

By utilizing fleet management software with GPS functionality and sensors, you can track the behavior of your drivers. Are they tailgating? Speeding? Driving aggressively? If so, you can use this information to plan some driver training that can ideally nip these problems in the bud.

Keeping your vehicles in compliance with state and federal regulations is hugely important and failing to do so can lead to costly fines and sideline your vehicles when you need them most. With a little advance planning, you can create a fleet maintenance program that will ensure your vehicles are in tip-top shape and can handily pass their next inspection.

 

Reduced Downtime

If your vehicles aren’t in motion, they’re probably not making you money. By planning your routes to include multiple deliveries at nearby locations, you can limit the amount of downtime your drivers have between trips.

This is also another reason why being proactive with your maintenance tasks ahead is so important. It will guarantee that a truck is available when it’s needed and from customer service and employee productivity standpoints, that’s huge! 

 

Increased Efficiency

Finding ways to improve your processes is incredibly important in the trucking and transportation industry. By combining data from your fleet management software and input from your team members, you can discover new strategies to make your business leaner and more efficient.

This is not only beneficial to you in terms of cost savings but it can also help support your customers in growing their businesses. And when those customers succeed, they’re likely to reward you with their loyalty in the future. All in all, it’s a win-win for everyone.

 

Get Professional Fleet Planning Help Today

If fleet planning has you feeling overwhelmed, the experts at Blaine Brothers are here to help. Our fleet planning professionals have a deep understanding of the trucking and transportation industry and with more than 40 years in the business, we’re confident we can assist you with all your needs. 

We offer fleet management services including vehicle servicing and preventive maintenance along with general fleet expertise so when you’re ready to start planning, we’re here to take care of you. Contact us today.

Blaine, MN

763.780.5130

10011 Xylite Street NE
Minneapolis, MN 55449

Cloquet, MN

218.879.6681

1325 Hwy 45
Cloquet, MN 55720

Clearwater, MN

320.558.9966

750 Heaton BLVD
Clearwater, MN 55320

Baldwin, WI

715.688.2404

2500 Alreich Ave
Baldwin, WI 54002

Truckaline

763.786.8863

9515 150th Avenue NE
Columbus, MN 55025