At the end of the day, your fleet is only as good as your chosen selection of vehicles. Unfortunately, vehicles don’t come cheap, and when faced with a finite budget, how can you ensure that you’re not only getting good value for money, but you’re identifying opportunities to reinvest? PoolCar provides several ways for Fleet Managers to capture costs so you can invest in the fleet of tomorrow.
Capturing Cost Centres
To successfully implement a strategy that will help you reinvest in your fleet, you need a way to accurately recover fleet costs. One way to do that is to charge fleet usage back to each of the departments in your organisation. That way, you’re not having to foot the whole bill, and those who use the fleet are paying their way. PoolCar makes this a breeze by capturing cost centres at the time of booking.
At the end of the month, you can use simply run a report that breaks down the percentage of usage across every department. The cost centre captured at the time of each booking becomes the identifier for departmental usage. And because you’re accurately capturing all bookings, there’s no need to guess. This ensures you can accurately recover fleet costs and not eat into your fleet’s already limited budget.
Another way to reduce fleet costs is by reducing your fleet’s utilisation. PoolCar captures data on how often each vehicle in your fleet is being driven. Would it surprise you to know that the average fleet barely reaches 20% utilisation? This is potentially leaving a lot of money on the table in the form of unnecessary vehicles, and their associated running costs.
What we see is that when organisations adopt PoolCar, they often manage to reduce their fleet by up to 10%. This can free the capital tied up in assets that would otherwise sit idle in the car park. It also helps Fleet Managers push back against claims that there aren’t vehicles available to staff. Solid booking data trumps anecdotal evidence every single time.
But while reducing your fleet size will provide some quick wins — you’ll recover some costs when de-fleeting old vehicles, including registration and maintenance costs — the real way to reduce costs is through behavioural change.
Behavioural change might not be high on your radar for ways to reinvest in your fleet, but it’s an important next step as it helps identify instances where fleet use isn’t actually necessary. This comes about by offering alternatives to vehicle travel, and by prompting employees to re-evaluate if a vehicle is necessary in the first place.
The simplest way to encourage behavioural change is via carpooling. Rather than having an employee start their journey planning by booking a vehicle, it can be a great exercise to first get them to see if anyone else is going to the same destination at the same time. If that’s the case, PoolCar has a request a ride feature, where you can book a seat in an existing booking, thereby making better use of the already booked vehicle. This also provides an opportunity for cross-pollination of ideas, especially when you have individuals from different departments spending time together and talking shop.
Another way to promote behavioural change is to require a manager to authorise short bookings. PoolCar has the ability to flag bookings for short distances. This can provide an opportunity for managers to ask if a vehicle is necessary for the trip; perhaps walking, public transport, a bike, or scooter would be more suitable? There are also opportunities to enquire whether a trip is even necessary and could the meeting take place online instead.
By promoting change around how employees access fleet vehicles, there is an opportunity to reduce the reliance on fleet vehicles. This gives you the chance to again analyse if vehicles are needed, and if not, reduce your fleet size.
You’ve reduced your fleet costs. Now what?
So, you’ve used PoolCar to streamline your fleet, reduced its size, and cut down on unnecessary staff travel. As a result, you’ve managed to improve the bottom line of your fleet’s budget. While it might be tempting to bank the money and save it for a rainy day, there are several ways to reinvest in your fleet that will pay dividends both now and into the future.
One option is to use the money you’ve saved and invest in high ANCAP rated vehicles. Afterall, it’s likely that your vehicles are now considered a place of work. When you consider that one in five work vehicles will be involved in an accident this year, and that more than 40% of workplace deaths in Australia and New Zealand involve vehicles, you want to ensure your employees are as safe as possible when on the road. It’s also worth pointing out that ANCAP ratings degrade with time. A five-star rated vehicle ten years ago is likely only one or two stars today. Investing in new vehicles with modern safety features is a fantastic way to reinvest in your fleet.
Another option is to use your savings to accelerate the transition to Zero Emission Vehicles. This would not only lower your fleet operating costs (no reliance on petrol and lower maintenance costs) it would also help accelerate your organisation’s goals around reducing emissions.
As you can see, implementing a shared vehicle solution like PoolCar opens up multiple opportunities to lower your fleet’s operating costs. But by reinvesting those savings in your future fleet, you stand to reap the benefits for both your employees and the organisation as a whole.