How to ensure your fleet is road ready

Chris Horbowyj, Channel Sales Director at Trakm8 writes about the importance of becoming data driven to keep fleets road ready.

From personal protective equipment to groceries, demand for goods of all kinds soared to unprecedented levels during the early stages of the pandemic – triggering a corresponding rise in the number of delivery vehicles out on the road. This initial rise in demand has given way to a sustained increase for fleet-provided services that isn’t going away any time soon.

For fleet managers, the world has changed a lot in the last few months. Trakm8 has observed how steady upward trends in demand over the last few years became precipitous rises in a matter of weeks, and downtime went from being an acceptable inconvenience to a serious obstacle to satisfying customer demand.

In fact, LeasePlan estimates that fleet downtime can cost up to £1,000 per off-road vehicle per day, and this is sure to have risen since the onset of the pandemic. In a situation like this, not only is downtime incredibly expensive - it’s also much more likely to happen.

As providers of advanced vehicle status monitoring technologies, Trakm8 has witnessed that with more deliveries, more frequent stops and more miles driven, vehicle health is likely to take a hit. And when drivers put in longer hours, they’re less likely to take the extra time to report problems with their vehicles. All in all, this means faults are more likely to develop in the first place, and minor faults will more frequently develop into major ones requiring off-road time.

So, it’s vital to have in place a robust system to inspect and log issues for every vehicle in your fleet, without relying on driver self-reporting.

This is a daunting task, especially if the only tools you have to hand are manpower, paper forms and spreadsheets. Inspecting vehicles by hand is a time-intensive process that’s not only costly, it’s inaccurate too. In an ideal world, fleet managers could access this data, remotely and accurately, at the touch of a button. 

Thankfully, there are solutions on the market that meet and even exceed these requirements.

One such product is Trakm8’s Connectedcare. Once installed, Connectedcare gives fleet managers remote access to diagnostic trouble codes and dashboard warning lights, from whatever device they have on hand, through an online portal or mobile app.

A tool like this is simple to use but has powerful implications for fleet management. Everything from traction control, battery health, fuel, AdBlue levels and more can be accurately tracked, meaning fleet managers can more effectively budget for upcoming costs. Minor faults are detected immediately, meaning you can swiftly put in place measures to minimise downtime and stop a major fault developing.

Systems like Connectedcare also come with some lesser-known advantages. Fuel fraud is a persistent problem in the industry, but by combining a more accurate odometer reading with fuel measurements and alerts, this type of fraud becomes much more difficult to carry out. And for businesses looking to open new revenue opportunities, drivers can be alerted when their vehicle needs maintenance and can be directed to a partner garage, making remote tracking solutions even more valuable.

Maximising fleet uptime is the key to increasing productivity and making sure you maintain excellent customer relationships. And now more than ever, those key customer relationships will make all the difference to your fleet’s success.

To learn more about Trakm8’s Connectedcare, contact us on 0330 311 5157 or at info@trakm8.com.

 

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Author

Chris Horbowyj

Channel Sales Director, Trakm8

Chris has been a BVRLA blogger since September 2020.