Automotive Fleet

FEB 2014

Magazine for the car and truck fleet and leasing industry

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The quality of a driver's level of productivity directly impacts the f eets time and money. make savvy decisions about route optimi- zation by properly dispatching jobs to the right skilled individuals, and can have a signif cant impact on fuel consumption, increased staf accountability, and more," Holland said. Additionally, some f eets are utilizing telematics capabilities to eliminate driver paperwork. "For example, by using geofenc- es around customer locations, f eet manag- ers can track the exact number of stops and amount of time a driver spent at a custom- er location, without the need for a driver to log such activity," said Mrosko of GE Capi- tal Fleet Services. While Shive of LeasePlan agreed that telematics is a huge initiative, he also not- ed cell-blocking devices and an increased focus on across-the-board driver training to enhance driver productivity. "T e usage of mobile applications to make drivers more ef cient in reporting mileage, f nding fuel and maintenance lo- cations, and other tasks that can be seen as tedious and time consuming is also impor- tant," Shive said. "However, the greatest ini- tiative is to ensure best practices are incor- porated within a f eet's policies." Increasing Productivity In addition to ensuring proper vehi- cle maintenance, reducing driver and ve- hicle downtime, and enhancing produc- tivity through technology and telematics, there are several other actions f eet man- agers can take. "Improving driver engagement is a key consideration when targeting improved driver productivity," said Paul Millington, technology product manager for GE Cap- ital Fleet Services. To help keep drivers engaged, produc- tive, and focused on their tasks, Jastrow of GE Capital Fleet Services recommended "scheduling proactive repairs (sometimes onsite during of -hours to keep vehicle up- time optimized), utilizing Web tools to help drivers locate repair facilities and fuel pro- viders, implementing telematics devices to enhance route optimization, and research- ing products such as toll and violation man- agement services." Implementing a toll program also serves as an opportunity for service f eets to en- sure that all vehicles optimize their travel time on toll roads by using the electronic toll lanes instead of the cash lanes. "Estimates of productivity gains have been 10 to 15 minutes per month, assum- ing the average queue at the cash lane is 30- 45 seconds and approximately one toll per business day," said Jayme Schnedeker, prod- uct manager for GE Capital Fleet Services. "For a 100-unit f eet within these parame- ters, this is up to 25 hours of unproductive time per month." Rob Scaf di, VP of licensing services for Donlen agreed about the importance of toll programs for increasing driver productiv- ity. "Avoiding long lines at DMV facilities and cash lanes on toll roads increases driv- er productivity. Utilizing a toll management program and responder helps drivers pass through stops more quickly," he said. "Ef cient f eets have productive drivers," said Vliek of Emkay. "T e concept is sim- ple, the tools and programs that are avail- able for f eets are designed to not only im- prove driver productivity, but also increase your bottom line. When it comes to driv- er productivity, the long-term benef ts out- weigh the short-term ef ects." T e bottom line shows that the big push today is increasing driver productivity through a variety of policies, tools, and technology. "Improved driver productivity, quite simply, allows drivers to remain focused on what they were hired to do: their job," said Holland of Merchants Fleet Management. "At the same time, it ensures the lowest pos- sible operating costs for expenses that can be wildly variable if lef uncontrolled." AF AUTOMOTIVE FLEET I FEBRUARY 2014 20 DRIVERS of knowledge accessible from a driver's seat comes with productivity issues. In an ef ort to maximize their ef ciency, drivers are now multitasking while driving. "T ey are making phone calls, checking e-mails, or looking up directions. All of these momentary distractions are what put driv- ers at an increased risk for incidents," Vliek said. "Although the big push is mobile tech- nology and easy accessibility, this needs to come with safe and ef cient ways of train- ing drivers to utilize the modern advantag- es, yet also do it safely. Increasingly, f eets are turning to telemat- ics services to achieve increased levels of driver productivity. "While some of the gains come from monitoring potentially 'non-productive behaviors,' such as idling, excessive depot stop time, or excessive downtime, many f eets are using telematics data to drive improvements in average service or delivery times and overall 'productive' hours per day," said Mike Mrosko, telematics product leader for GE Capital Fleet Services. According to a study done by PHH Ar- val on a client's f eet with nearly 7,000 loca- tions, telematics implementation improved the f eets' average stops per day from slight- ly more than 10 to an average of 18. "Average miles per stop decreased from about 16 miles to 8.5 miles per stop. When calculating the productivity gains of stops, mileage, and reduction in driver overtime, the studied f eet reduced mileage and saw productivity savings of $270.55 per vehi- cle, per month," noted Keilty of PHH Arval. Ef cient route planning through telemat- ics use can also help reduce unproductive time that a driver spends on the road. "Similarly, re-routing enables a f eet to f nd the closest driver to a job and route them from their current location to a new jobsite," according to Tom Sloan, director, analytical product management for Don- len. "T is ensures that the appropriate driver completes the job, rather than the f rst driv- er who saw the job in the system." According to Holland of Merchants Fleet Management, the use of telematics devices is the biggest trend she is seeing to better a manager drivers' time. "T e overwhelming amount of data pro- duced from these products allows f eets to PHOTO: ŠISTOCKPHOTO.COM/SAM74100 A F 0 2 1 4 s t r a t e g i e s . i n d d 2 0 AF0214strategies.indd 20 1 / 2 4 / 1 4 6 : 1 2 A M 1/24/14 6:12 AM

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