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The major KPIs for fleet and transport managers - Part 2

In part 1, we looked at why monitoring fleet KPI's is so important and outlined that the metrics you analyse will differ depending on what results you are trying to achieve. In part 2, we will be looking at common targets shared by fleet managers and the best way to attain results.

KPI's for fuel consumption reductions

Fuel expenditure is a key contributor to the cost of running a fleet; therefore it is vital that the correct KPI's are monitored. Idling time is a popular metric to measure due to its dramatic effect on MPG figures. With telematics, it is not only possible to obtain accurate idling times, but it is also easy to identify drivers who have the most impact on this figure. By establishing those who negatively impact on idling figures, it is possible to educate drivers on how they can reduce idling when conducting their day-to-day duties. Reducing fuel consumption and increasing MPG is also improved by monitoring poor driver behaviour events. Without installing telematics, monitoring fuel-thirsty actions such as heavy acceleration and harsh braking is almost impossible. With devices like the T10 range from Trakm8, it is possible to view the frequency of these harsh events and also to pinpoint which fuel-inefficient activity triggered an alert. You are then able to benchmark the frequency of these events, as initiatives are put in place to establish smoother driving styles among the fleet. The reduction in poor driver behaviour events can then be used as a means of laying the foundations for a lesser overall fuel spend. For fleet managers, telematics also allows the monitoring of the average MPG amongst the fleet or for individual vehicles in order to identify a correlation between the reduction in poor driving behaviour events and an increased average MPG figure.

KPI's for improving safety and reducing driver distraction

Health and safety is another key priority, especially amongst large fleets where accidents can happen frequently. With an effective telematics solution, accident logs can be recorded automatically with first notification of loss (FNOL) algorithms whereby fleet managers are notified when an installed device detects an impact. Accident logs are automatically kept on file and the relevant strategy can be implemented should the frequency of accidents be noticeably high.

With stricter penalties which came into force in March 2017, businesses must ensure that they implement their mobile phone policies in order to protect staff from unnecessary sanctions and to ensure a duty of care. Mobile phone use behind the wheel has historically been a difficult metric to quantify however there are now tools which fleet managers can harness in order to decrease accident risk amongst their drivers. DriveID from Cellcontrol enables certain applications to be restricted whilst in the cab. When attempts are made to use restricted apps, which are predefined by fleet managers, a notification is sent to the central computers where fleet managers can keep a log of breaches to the mobile phone policy.

KPI's for improving productivity

Measuring the utilisation of vehicles allows fleet managers to determine whether assets are being over or under-used. By measuring KPI's such as average monthly mileage, average number of deliveries per week and average load size, fleet managers are rewarded with the insight required to optimise utilisation and increase the frequency of deliveries using the least amount of vehicles.

Vehicle fill is often a metric used by operators of distribution and logistics vehicles in order to ensure their vehicles are being used to their maximum potential. If conducting deliveries to locations in close vicinity, fleet managers may learn that it could be more productive for the asset to return to the depot and refill once half the deliveries have been completed. Route optimisation software from Trakm8 enables fleet managers to input delivery schedules, the number of available assets and even information such as package size and asset capacity. The system’s intelligent algorithms then calculate how deliveries can be completed with the least amount of vehicles and with the lowest mileage. This not only has obvious benefits for vehicle utilisation but also for fuel spend and environmental impact of the fleet. Reducing the amount of vehicles required to fulfil schedules allows businesses to offer an increased number of available delivery slots and can leave you with the spare assets to take on new business.

KPI's for vehicle failure and preventative maintenance

Many businesses monitor the average time between unscheduled maintenance and repairs in order to identify problematic assets or vehicles which show signs of recurring faults. Downtime and unplanned maintenance poses a substantial threat to running costs and the level of service your business is able to provide to customers; not to mention the operational frustration of implementing contingency plans when a vehicle does experience a breakdown. By analysing, identifying and replacing or repairing troublesome assets, unexpected costs and disruptions to schedules are eliminated. In order to prevent vehicles undergoing unexpected maintenance, regular (if not daily) manual vehicle checks should be carried out. Through a combination of a mobile app, and the telematics unit’s diagnostic capabilities, fleet managers are able to record if checks are carried out, and also identify vehicles with recurring issues.

In part 3, we will look at the tools which can help fleet and transport managers to monitor key performance indicators.

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