For fleet managers, improving fuel economy is a top priority. When fleet vehicles consume less fuel, it generally means vehicles are in good working order, efficient routes are being driven, and drivers are practicing good driving habits. But staying on top of vehicle maintenance, route planning, and driver training can take a lot of time.
Many fleet managers use fleet cards to help with fleet management, including monitoring and improving fuel economy. Here, we will explore seven ways fleet fuel card data can help maximize the miles you get from each tank. Before we do, though, let’s look at why fuel economy and data are so crucial in fleet management.
Understanding fuel economy
Fuel economy directly affects a fleet’s profitability. With constantly changing fuel prices, optimizing fuel efficiency has become critical for businesses.
By maximizing fuel economy, fleet managers can significantly reduce their operational costs.
The role of data in fleet management
Data has become a critical part of fleet management. The right information provides insights into vehicle performance, driver behavior, and other factors influencing fuel economy.
Fleet cards are a common way for businesses to gather vehicle or driver-specific data. With all data reported in real time, fleet managers or business owners can make informed decisions.
Telematics systems, combined with fleet card data, deepen the information pool. Fleet managers can leverage this data for actionable insights that lead to better fuel economy.
Regular vehicle maintenance
It’s recommended that fleet managers always follow manufacturer-suggested maintenance schedules. Properly maintained vehicles experience reduced fuel consumption and lower the risk of unexpected breakdowns, resulting in improved fuel economy and overall fleet performance.
Whether you use mileage or months/years of use as your guide for regular maintenance, a fleet card can help. The data from a fleet card gives you up-to-date info on every vehicle, including the time the vehicle has been in service and mileage. This makes it easy to schedule maintenance and plan for vehicles to be out of service.
Preventive vehicle maintenance
Data-driven predictive maintenance is a great strategy for improving fuel economy.
Telematics data can provide fleet managers with useful information about engine performance, tire pressure, and other maintenance indicators. By analyzing this data, you can schedule preventive maintenance tasks promptly, ensuring that vehicles are operating at peak efficiency. This approach keeps minor problems from becoming bigger, more costly ones.
Analyzing fuel consumption patterns
Fleet card and telematics data can be used to monitor fuel consumption across different vehicles, drivers, and routes. By looking at trends over time, you can identify outliers and inefficiencies. Addressing these patterns and implementing corrective measures help fleet managers maximize fuel efficiency and reduce operational costs.
Route planning plays a crucial role in improving fleet fuel economy. Fleet card and telematics data allow fleet managers to analyze historical patterns and identify the most optimal routes for their vehicles.
By leveraging this information, managers can avoid congested routes, minimize idle time, and reduce miles driven. And with real-time traffic updates provided by telematics systems, fleet managers can quickly reroute vehicles to avoid traffic jams and optimize fuel consumption.
Utilizing telematics for real-time monitoring
Telematics enables fleet managers to monitor their vehicles’ performance in real time. By installing telematics devices in fleet vehicles, managers gain access to a wealth of data that can be used to improve fuel economy. These devices collect information such as vehicle speed, idling time, harsh acceleration or braking events, and engine diagnostics. By analyzing this data, fleet managers can identify patterns and trends that affect fuel efficiency.
Reducing idling time
Excessive idling is one of the primary culprits behind poor fuel economy. With the help of telematics data, fleet managers can monitor and reduce idle time. By identifying vehicles that have high idling rates, you can educate drivers on the adverse effects of idling with actionable data. Additionally, telematics data provide insight into idling that occurs at specific times and locations. This information helps drivers avoid congestion-prone areas during peak hours.
Monitoring driver behavior
Few things have as significant of an impact on fuel economy as Driver behavior. Aggressive driving habits such as rapid acceleration, hard braking, and excessive speeding increase fuel consumption. Telematics data gives fleet managers valuable insights into driver behavior, helping identify and address inefficient driving practices. Implementing driver training programs and incentivizing fuel-efficient driving behaviors helps fleet managers improve fuel economy and reduce maintenance costs associated with aggressive driving.
Better data = better business
Increasing fuel economy is a top priority for most fleets because of its direct impact on operating costs. Implementing data-driven strategies will help improve your fleet’s fuel economy.
To learn more about how a fleet card can help your business, visit efsllc.com