Are you in the security provision, electrical, or home services business? You can attest to how challenging it can be to achieve maximum profitability and productivity in fleet management. With the right strategies, you can overcome most of those challenges.
Upfitting is an excellent way to increase the efficiency of your fleet. Nevertheless, it isn't as straightforward as it sounds. It takes understanding the vehicle's designated use and expertise to establish the best way to achieve efficiency.
As a fleet manager, with the numerous fleet management challenges brought about by COVID-19, the last thing you would want is reduced productivity because your vehicles aren't designed for the job at hand. Thus, you need to coordinate different aspects of the upfitting process to succeed.
What is Fleet Upfit and Why Is It Important in Fleet Management
Fleet upfitting refers to the process of customizing your vehicles aimed at increased productivity. This process involves design optimization to increase drivers' performance, reduce the cost of managing the fleet, and improve your customers' experience. If done correctly, upfits can enhance your fleets' efficiency.
Here are a few tips to help you successfully upfit your vehicle with ease.
Tips for Successful Vehicle Upfit
1. Start Early
If you want to upfit a given vehicle, you should have a clear plan. While it is understandable that you need to get the vehicle ready for service, it is advisable to get the vehicle first before deciding on the upfitting process. Nevertheless, if you plan well and simultaneously, the process might be much more comfortable.
As a fleet manager, you should maintain a balance between your budget and needs. Communicating with your vendor would even prove to be more useful in easing the process. Your goal should be to have a vehicle with the capacity of containing, stopping, and moving the load safely, efficiently, and effectively. Thus, engaging the right professional will ensure that the upfitting process meets your performance expectations.
2. Evaluate the job
Different tasks have various tools requirements. Before upfitting your truck, it is critical to consider what will be going into the truck. For example, if you know the products you will be carrying on the truck bed, it will be easy to establish the cap's height.
Your specific needs should inform the upfitting process. For instance, if you want a truck to access the inside of the vehicle from the sides, it would be necessary to provide more information on the type of access needed to customize the upfitting process to your specific needs. Therefore, when evaluating the job, consider aspects such as storage, access, and rack system.
3. Consider the Users of the Vehicle
When upfitting your vehicle, you will need to consider all the users. Successful upfitting isn't just about the cargo and tools. As a fleet manager, you should take note of your drivers too.
If you make excellent upfits, the vehicle users will be happy, which translates to improved performance. Consider the drivers' needs first before you start the upfit. The needs of your fleet crew working in rural areas will be different from those working in more suburban areas, so how you go about the upfit should be guided by such aspects.
4. The Upfit Should be Realistic
While you may have your plan for the driver and the entire job, it is necessary to understand that tasks differ. As you plan how the vehicles will be used, employ an element of realism to avoid overdoing it.
Any wrong decisions during the upfitting process could cost the company a significant amount of money. As you plan for any upfit, it is advisable to consider everybody's efficiency and safety. Let the manufacturer pull and crash-test the partition, cargo racks, ladder, flooring, and shelving.
Engage the Right Upfitting Professionals
Upfitting is a great way to enhance efficiency and improve productivity. However, the upfitting professional you engage can make or break the project. If you need any guidance with fleet upfit or fleet management solutions, get in touch with Wilmar, the Southeast's largest independent fleet leasing and management company headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina. The experts here will upfit your vehicle according to your needs, tastes, and preferences!