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How to fight fluctuating fuel costs

By Simon Austin October 11, 2022

This year has seen some of the sharpest increases in fuel costs in recent memory, with wholesale prices rising over 400% over the past twelve months. While those highs have begun to subside, recent events in the currency markets could see prices soar once again.

Of course, there is very little the average fleet manager can do to impact the cost of fuel at the pump. There are, however, several steps you can take to increase efficiency and make savings elsewhere.

So, whether you're running a fleet of five or 50, here are four ways to keep your fuel costs under control with the help of GPS fleet management technology.  

Four steps for a more fuel-efficient future

Change driver behaviour
Driving style is one of the most significant factors impacting fuel consumption. Everything from speeding to idling can have a bearing on your fuel costs. With fleet management technology, you can take steps to monitor and coach out behaviours like these and increase fuel efficiency as a result.

With data collected on idling times, speeding and harsh driving, you can create driver scorecards to rank everyone in your fleet. The more fuel-friendly the driving style, the higher the score. As well as helping to create competition within your teams, this allows fleet managers to reward top performers and incentivise others to improve.

You can even go further and place audible alerts in the cab of every vehicle. This way, drivers are reminded as soon as uneconomical behaviour occurs and can take action accordingly.

Stay on top of maintenance
Driver performance is not the only thing that can have an adverse impact on your fuel bills. Vehicle condition has a big part to play, too. Clogged filters, under-inflated tyres and much more can increase fuel consumption, in some cases significantly.

To combat this, encourage drivers to carry out routine vehicle checks at regular intervals. This could be as simple as a pre-shift walk around to check tyre pressure before hitting the road.

A comprehensive fleet management solution can help here too. Once in place, you can set yours to alert you based on engine hours, mileage, or specific dates. This way, you get a reminder whenever routine servicing, repairs and part replacement are due.

Make your miles count
It's a basic premise, but it holds true – the fewer miles you drive, the less fuel you'll consume. So, any way to help reduce total fleet mileage should be embraced.

One option is to optimise your routes with a GPS fleet management solution. With smarter scheduling, you can automatically and efficiently plot each day's drops or site visits. As well as helping you potentially fit more jobs into the working day, this approach can reduce unnecessary time behind the wheel.

The visibility offered by a fleet management solution can also help you reduce mileage across your fleet. A live map view of each one of your vehicles, combined with live traffic information, allows you to predict and mitigate delays – and keep your vehicles moving.

Get visibility into your vehicles – and their drivers
Efficiently plotting each day's routes is one thing. Ensuring that those routes are followed as intended is another. And unfortunately, that is not always the case.

Unauthorised use, whether a detour to run personal errands or using vehicles for private work, can considerably impact fuel consumption. But with fleet management technology, you get peace of mind that every vehicle is where it should be, hard at work.

As well as monitoring the whereabouts of vehicles in near real-time, you can also set geofences around permitted routes and unauthorised areas. Whenever a driver strays off course, you receive an alert straight to your desktop, phone or inbox.

Stay in control with Verizon Connect

Fuel is a fundamental part of running a fleet business. But that doesn't mean you have to simply accept rising costs and inefficiency. With a GPS fleet management system, you can take practical steps to keep your fuel consumption under control, whatever the price at the pump.

And helping to reduce fuel spend is just one of the many potential benefits of Verizon Connect's suite of fleet performance applications. Visit our Case Studies to see how we're already helping businesses like yours to drive efficiency, streamline compliance and boost productivity. Or, if you're ready to see our solution in action, book a free demo today.

Simon Austin

Simon is the Associate Director, International Marketing, EMEA & APAC. With over 20 years marketing experience in the IT software and business analytics industry, Simon believes passionately in the power of data and how it can help business realise their full potential faster.

Tags: Team management, Routing, Productivity & efficiency, Cost control

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