Fleet Management and Standardization – How to Bring the Picture into Focus

Recently, fleet management articles extolling the benefits of standardization have been in the media. The principle of standardization in fleet management means that all vehicles are of a standard make and model. All contents of the vehicles are standardized, the location of equipment inside of each vehicle is standardized and all the branding is consistently applied to vehicle exteriors.

All this standardization has fleet management and cost savings benefits. Some companies that provide services to consumers not only monitor their technician’s driving habits, but can also analyze the efficiency of each technician, measuring the length of time it takes to complete each service call. This information allows for efficiencies of scale that can lead to lowered cost to consumers.

And, in fact, standardization is a fleet management technique that can be an option for many businesses. But while standardization of the actual vehicles might be ideal, not every business can afford it. That’s when a different set of fleet management techniques need to bring the picture into focus for your individual business.

What if your business’s fleet vehicles are not standard, and your business doesn’t allow a large capital expenditure? Well there are services for upfitting and equipment recommendations, as well as retrofitting as required. But most importantly, companies need to understand that the best fleet management solutions for their unique challenges may not be the standard ones. Some companies have aging fleets that desperately need to implement maintenance,cycling and other fleet management policies. Some companies have such a need for instant cash that purchase leaseback is the best solution. Selling the vehicles and then leasing them back provides a cash influx, and using that cash to strengthen the business may be an extremely effective fleet management technique.

Other options could include considering closed-end leasing, open-end leasing or single payment leasing, in which a company makes a single lease payment each year when the cash is available, and use cash for other business objectives at other times of the year. All of these options can be completely customized to the equipment, cash flow and business needs of each company. Fleet management is not a one size fits all proposition. To be most effective, fleet management needs to be as unique as the business it serves.

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