• January 2, 2024

  • Abby Nuttall

  • Articles

It’s a new year and that means a fresh start for many people, and it’s not just individuals who like to try new habits, break old ones or are generally looking for a refresh. Many companies use the new year to update the status quo and one area you might choose to do so is in your fleet management team.

Five Tips for New Year Fleet Management

To help get you ahead of the game and put your fleet management team in the best position possible for a successful 2024 we’ve got five activities you should do in January.

1. Update Your Fleet Calendar

Our first tip is to review and update your fleet calendar. The start of the year is the perfect time to make sure that your calendar is accurate and add any new tasks or dates into it. Doing so will set your fleet team up to be able to smoothly manage regular or expected tasks, and reduce the risk of any slipping through the gaps.

A fleet calendar should be a shared calendar accessible to all of the fleet management team, and should include:

  • Taxation dates for all of fleet
  • MOT due dates for all of fleet
  • Any known servicing dates (if time based) for your fleet
  • Any return dates for lease vehicles 
  • Delivery dates for any new vehicles
  • New starter dates and any associated tasks (this may include hire of temporary car, delivery of their new car, training they need to complete, and checking their licence)
  • Driver training course dates (or renewal date if complete annually)
  • Licence check renewal date(s)
  • Insurance renewal date (or dates if multiple policies)
  • Fleet policy renewal dates

You might also choose to include reoccurring activities that happen more regularly such as monthly report tasks, vehicle checks or any other specific needs for your company.

If you don’t have a fleet calendar, then the start of the year is the perfect time to set one up. Creating a calendar can be a lot of work at the output, but in the long run it will save you time, reduce the risk of work tasks falling through the cracks and help your fleet management team run everything a little smoother.

2.  Review Your Fleet Polices

The new year is also a great time to review your fleet policies. This might not line up with your normal annual review, but we think that making the switch to reviewing the policies in January can be helpful for your company.

After the Christmas break reviewing policies and updating them where needed can be a great opportunity for your fleet team to spot any area where changes have been made or will be as they’re coming to it with a fresh mind.

The new year is a time when people expect changes and so are likely to be less resistant to any updates to the policies.

3. Inspect All Your Vehicles

We recommend that your fleet is inspected regularly but the new year is a great time to give your fleet a bit more of a thorough inspection and to make sure any cars that might have missed their monthly checks are looked at.

If you have a large fleet, then it might be easier to ask individual drivers to check their own vehicles. You can send them a helpful checklist of what to check that they can include comments and pictures (if digital) on, so your team has a record of the inspection too.

With these checks we advise looking for:

  • Any damage to the exterior
  • Any damage to the interior
  • Any chips or cracks to the glasswork (front windscreen, rear windshield, side windows and sun roof if you have one)
  • The tyre condition (including tread and pressure) for all tyres, including any spare
  • Fluid levels (oil, coolant, screen wash)
  • Any warning lights on the dash
  • Vehicle mileage

You can include any additional checks you might need, especially if you have specialist equipment or vehicles in your fleet.

4. Refresh Your Drivers

January is also a great time to give your drivers a refresher on all the essentials they need to know.

A few key areas that you might want to refresh them on are:

  • Essential phone numbers
  • Any responsibilities they have as a driver
  • Directions to any resources available to them
  • Training programmes available to them

One way to easily do this is to send an email flyer with all of the key information and access points for them. This can be as generalised or tailored to department or type of driver depending on how you want to send the information out. Alternatively, you might choose to break down the information into a series of emails based on the topics above to make it more manageable for your drivers.

5. Strategize for the Year Ahead

As you’re at the start of the year January is the perfect time to create or update your fleet plan for the coming year. Having a clearly defined strategy will help your fleet management team to implement any changes smoothly, be prepared for any resistance or questions from drivers and their managers and overall improve the quality of your fleet because there is a plan in place.

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