Managing vehicles and drivers is expensive. The costs of fuel, vehicle repairs, legal costs, and other line items can add up quickly.

Investing in a fleet safety management solution can help you reduce these costs, so you have the flexibility to dedicate budget toward growing your fleet.

Types of Fleet Management Costs

But before explaining how the best fleet management solutions can help create some cushion in your budget, let us discuss where most of the spend goes in the first place. There are three primary cost categories for the majority of fleets:

1. Insurance Claims Costs

While insurance claims may not amount to the biggest line item on the expense sheet for many smaller fleets, they are often a huge priority for larger fleets. Legal issues, and their associated costs, can quickly add up. Insurance claims costs include:

• Auto Liability: Claims for third-party bodily injury or property damage due to a vehicle accident.

• Vehicle Repairs: Claims for physical damage of a company vehicle that was involved in a collision.

2. Fuel Costs

Most fleets monitor fuel costs closely. This is a huge expense that is difficult to predict because petrol prices fluctuate with shifting economic conditions. When fuel budgets are at risk, fleet managers have to find ways to manage and minimise fuel consumption.

3. Maintenance Costs

Preventative and routine maintenance costs, such as replacing a vehicle’s brakes and tires, are common place. Like fuel, fleet maintenance costs vary and can be impacted by uncontrollable factors that range from warranty coverages to bad weather. Understanding the maintenance costs that can be controlled and adopting new practices and technologies to help reduce the related expenses can be critical to a fleet’s success.

How Fleet Safety Management Technology Can Help Reduce Costs

Fleet safety management technology has evolved beyond traditional telematics systems by providing layered, detailed insights. With video, machine vision technology, and vehicle data such as GPS, fleets are finally able to get more insights than ever before. With these insights, fleets can improve operations and safety, while lowering unnecessary costs.

Here is an overview of how fleet management solutions can lower costs in the three categories outlined above:

1. Reducing Claims Costs

Fleet safety management technology with video, reveals what happened before, during, and after a collision. Video is a powerful tool to help control costs because it provides a straight arrow to the truth, so fleets can immediately address claims to minimise legal fees, and potentially avoid false claims altogether.

Video can also be used to coach drivers on risky behaviours, like distracted driving, not obeying the road signs, not wearing a seatbelt, and many more. As drivers improve those behaviours, collisions, or at least the severity of collisions, are reduced, thereby decreasing associated costs. Reducing risky driving behaviours can have a powerful impact on the ROI of a video fleet safety management tool.

2. Reducing Fuel Costs

Fleet safety management software helps manage fuel costs by collecting data from the vehicle engine control module (ECM). The resulting reports offer insights on activities that burn excessive fuel, like:

• Idling: When a vehicle is idle for too long, a fleet safety management system can raise a flag so managers can speak to drivers about how to limit their idle time and avoid wasting fuel.

• Dispatching: Faster, shorter routes directly translate to lower fuel costs. GPS fleet tracking arms dispatchers with real-time GPS locations, helping them optimise drivers’ routes.

• Driving Behaviour: While not as quantifiable as the previous bullets, having insight into driver behaviour is important for reducing fuel costs. For example, data could show excessive fuel usage due to sudden starts/stops or hard accelerations. Coaches can educate drivers on how their behaviours can put them at greater risk for collisions.

Fleet safety management technology can reveal how much fuel is consumed by the fleet each week, month, or year. It also uncovers instances of excessive fuel use, which can be addressed by speaking to drivers or by making adjustments to daily operations.

3. Reducing Maintenance Costs

Insights that can help fleets lower maintenance costs include:

• Number of miles driven (by vehicle and by fleet) to flag when proactive maintenance is needed.

• Risky driving behaviours, such as accelerating, hard braking, or hitting pavements that increase wear and tear on brakes and tires.

• Having this data helps fleet managers keep vehicles in top condition, reducing downtimes and addressing issues before they turn into expensive problems on the road.

Finding Fleet Safety Management Software to Control Your Costs

Based on your industry and fleet size, some costs may be higher than others and become priorities when researching fleet safety management software. If you’re in this for the long haul, you will need a fleet safety management system that can keep up with your evolving needs. You will want to find a solution that can be combined and customised to prioritise your most pressing business challenges.

For more information: