Four Big Benefits to Fleet Management Solutions

Four Big Benefits to Fleet Management Solutions

What Distinguishes the Best Fleet Management Solution Software Packages?

Today, maintaining a working fleet without a good fleet management solution is nearly impossible.  Most fleet managers already have software for overseeing their operations – but is it the best software for your needs?

Fleet management software is getting better every year, adding more necessary features and benefits.  Today’s fleet management solutions are robust, multi-faceted, and integrated into other critical systems.

They go beyond merely tracking vehicles and maintenance, to giving you deep insights into how vehicle management ties into the business operations as a whole.

If you’re using fleet management software that’s several years old, there are plenty of reasons to consider upgrading to a new solution.

Four Big Benefits to A New Fleet Management Solution

1 – Maintenance and part replacement warnings

Fleet management software can track each component on a vehicle, including its maintenance history and expected lifespan.  These can be tied to warnings that pop up when a part is due for maintenance or replacement.  This critical information allows you to perform better preventative maintenance, stopping accidents or breakdowns before they happen.

2 – Keeping drivers safer

There are several ways better software improves driver safety.  Beyond preventing unnecessary breakdowns on the road, they can also track driver performance directly.  You can see which of your drivers are following the rules of the road, and which need coaching on better driving techniques.

3 – Reduce fuel usage

Keeping fuel costs low is critical right now, as the costs of transportation continue to go up.  You’ll be able to monitor fuel use in every vehicle independently, with warnings if a particular vehicle’s MPG suddenly drops.

You’ll be able to review driver behavior (such as needlessly aggressive acceleration and braking) as well as utilize preventative maintenance to replace items such as tires which can contribute to poor fuel efficiency.

4 – Robust reporting

Thanks to the huge amount of data that current fleet management software packages track, you get excellent reporting abilities.  Virtually any aspect of your fleet can be analyzed and reported on, including crossover reports showing how fleet performance is impacting the business as a whole.  This gives fleet managers a true wealth of information for improving the value of the fleet.

Fleet Management Solutions

Vehicle Licensing Consultants (VLC) specializes in improving fleets and fleet management systems.  From regulatory compliance to reducing your fuel use, our tools and expertise help your fleet run better. Click here to learn more about us.

How to Find the Best Fleet Dispatch Software for Your Needs

How to Find the Best Fleet Dispatch Software for Your Needs

How to Find the Best Fleet Dispatch Software for Your Needs

If you’re looking for ways to reduce costs and improve efficiency in your fleet, the right fleet dispatch software can make all the difference!

Modern fleet software goes far beyond simply monitoring where your fleet is on the road.  Fleet tracking and maintenance software can now put every piece of data you need in one place, accessible from any Internet-capable device.  It can handle a huge array of tasks, including assigning drivers, managing schedules, optimizing routes, tracking costs, monitoring speed & time via GPS, and much more.  In many cases, it can even be integrated into your other software solutions, such as your customer database or Enterprise Resource Planning system.

Either way, the right fleet dispatch software brings numerous benefits.

Why Invest in Fleet Dispatch Software

More than anything else, the reason to invest in fleet dispatch software is because of the immediate real cost savings.  At a basic level, software can solve tricky computational challenges, such as optimizing routes and transport assignments.  It can also monitor fuel costs, and alert you when drivers are behaving in ways that waste fuel.

There’s no limit to how complicated a situation can be.  Today’s fleet management software solutions can handle complex multi-stop routes, balance driver availability, or even take into consideration factors such as individual drivers’ skill levels.  In turn, this doesn’t simply lead to improved efficiency, it can help keep your drivers safe while they’re on the road!

Meanwhile, you’ll have robust and granular data-based insights into every aspect of your operation.  You can compare key metrics, or dig deep into performance statistics to discover why, for example, one truck seems to be performing better than others.

Perhaps best of all, this leads to a better customer experience.  There are many, many options in transportation today.  Maintaining great CX is critical for companies who want to grow and maintain their customer base.  Beyond improving your own operational efficiency, you can also provide services such as real-time monitoring and updates, so your customers can track their orders enroute.

However, to see all those benefits, you need the right fleet dispatch software.  Here are some of the most important features to look for:

Six Critical Features in Any Fleet Management Software Package

1 – Multi-stage route planning

Any cell phone can do basic GPS mapping calculations these days.  Professional software must do more to be worth the investment.  It should be able to handle multi-stage routes and driver assignments, along with factors such as vehicle capacity and delivery windows.  Ideally, it should be able to optimize multiple shipments across multiple jobs, allowing you to optimize at the macro level as well as micro.

2 – Realtime tracking and ETAs

Being able to track vehicles in progress is bare-minimum functionality.  To make the most of real-time tracking, this information should also be made available to customers, so they have accurate ETAs on their shipments.  This prevents failed deliveries, while also ensuring your customers have all the information, they need to make their own business decisions.  This is what keeps customers loyal, year after year!

3 – Robust metrics tracking and reporting

Which aspects of delivery are most important for your business needs?  Maybe it’s fuel consumption, or legal compliance, or minimizing job completion time.  No matter the situation, you need fleet management software that can work around your needs and provide reporting that enables you to meet your own goals.  “It reports what it reports” just isn’t good enough these days.

4 – Robust multi-system integration

The days of individual applications handling individual tasks are going away – and good riddance.  You shouldn’t have to log into a half-dozen different applications to get your job done.  The best fleet dispatch software solutions can integrate directly into your ERP, CRM, and more, pulling in data and allowing for even more complicated reporting on a wide variety of data.  You should have all the data you need in one place!

5 – Unlimited scalability

A software investment shouldn’t only solve your problems today.  It should solve them for years to come, and that means scalability.  Whether you have one vehicle, or one thousand, a great fleet management software package can grow alongside your operation.

6 – Ease of use

Finally, any modern software package must be easy for workers to use.  Training is a drag and takes workers away from the jobs they’re supposed to be doing.  Good fleet dispatch software is designed to be almost instantly usable, with minimal retraining, while still offering the power and depth to compete in today’s highly competitive transportation market.

Fleet Dispatch Software from VLC

If you need better fleet dispatch and management software, Vehicle Licensing Consultants (VLC) has what you need.  VLC specializes in making it easy for fleet operators to manage their business while reducing costs. Click here to learn more about our fleet dispatch software solutions.

4 Common Mistakes in Quarterly IFTA Filings | IFTA Filing Services

4 Common Mistakes in Quarterly IFTA Filings | IFTA Filing Services

Avoid These IFTA Filing Mistakes to Ensure Your Fleet Is Legal

If you own or oversee a working transportation fleet that spans multiple states (or into Canada) you must be aware of IFTA regulations.  The International Fuel Tax Agreement is a series of regulations that allow a transportation company to be located and licensed in one state, while freely traveling to other states or provinces without having to be individually licensed for each area.

One of the most important aspects of IFTA compliance is quarterly reporting.  Your reports must be accurately filled out and turned in, or your licensing/certification could be in danger. While we do provide IFTA filing services, these are some of the most common mistakes people make, that you should definitely avoid.

Four Common Mistakes In Quarterly IFTA Filings

1 – Missing the deadlines

You absolutely must file your IFTA reports by certain dates each quarter, or you could be looking at significant penalties.  At the least, you’ll be fined an additional 10% of your owed taxes, and you’ll also open yourself to closer inspection or auditing.

As of writing, the next major due date is January 31, 2022, for all operations in October-December 2021.  Mark your calendar, or make a note in your smartphone, so you don’t miss it.

2 – Using estimates rather than real numbers

Never try to “get by” with estimates on matters such as fuel use and mileage.  You’re expected to file your IFTA reports using hard data taken from each vehicle’s computer system.  If the numbers are inaccurate, you might get away with it – but if you’re audited, you’ll be in a lot of trouble.  Always use real data from your telematics device to avoid any problems.

On that note…

3 – Failing to report GPS or odometer problems

System malfunctions happen.  Even our government in its finite wisdom recognizes this. So, if a vehicle’s odometer or GPS fails to properly record milage on a job, this isn’t a major problem – as long as it’s properly reported.  Be sure your drivers note any such malfunctions in as much detail as possible, so they can be recorded on your IFTA filings.

4 – Using incompatible software

Any sort of data-gathering software you use must be certified by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).  Even if the data is accurate, if the software gathering it isn’t certified, you might still get audited or otherwise investigated.

IFTA Filing Services

If this sounds like too much hassle, look into third-party IFTA filing services. Vehicle Licensing Consultants (VLC) specializes in simplifying the bureaucracy in the transportation industry, making it easier to maintain your fleet.  Click here to learn more about our IFTA filing services.

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