Tuesday 17 March 2015
How am I driving? Bad fleet management could be costing SMEs millions

Small and medium-sized businesses could be losing millions of pounds a year because of ineffective management of their fleets of lorries and delivery vans.

Van drivers might be speeding as they struggle to meet delivery schedules, leaving the engine running unnecessarily or even using a mobile phone while at the wheel.

Travelling on a motorway at 80-85mph, rather than 70mph, can increase fuel consumption by 25 per cent or more, says the AA, while according to the Department of Transport, work related crashes can cost a company between £16,000 and £154,000 – rising to more than a million if a fatality occurs.

One hour of idle time is the equivalent to 3.7 litres of fuel and, with the national average price of fuel now reaching £1.38 per litre, a company running a fleet of ten vehicles could be wasting about £935 a month in fuel just due to idling alone.

Costs aside, the negative effect on the image of a company when its branded vehicles are badly driven can be serious, especially for small businesses that normally work within a particular location. As well as reducing fuel and vehicle maintenance costs, better driving can also cut insurance premiums.

Larger companies with logistics departments and bigger budgets have found ways to manage their fleets more effectively but now technology could do something similar for small businesses. Telematics is a technology that has been developing rapidly over the last few years and is now more reliable and more affordable than ever before. Essentially it involves putting a small box in your vehicles so that you can you can keep track of them at all times through a web interface portal, with up to the minute information.

According to research organisation the International Data Corporation, the markets for fleet and workforce management products are “underpenetrated”, especially in the case of SMEs. But this situation is changing rapidly as smaller businesses start to recognise the benefits that this technology can bring.

For more information on how WTJ can assist your business, contact us on 01924 871111 or Enquire Online