The new year is a time for everyone to reflect on their successes and challenges of the year past, then make a resolution or two on how to improve in the year to come.
For fleet managers, every year is a chance to see improvements to the efficiency of your fleet, the job satisfaction of your drivers, and choose a few upgrades from the latest in-vehicle technologies.
With the pandemic recently behind us and some amazing hardware and software innovations rolling off the line, fleet managers have more than a few resolutions to choose from. If you're currently reflecting on your successes and challenges, it's time to look ahead. What will your 2022 fleet management New Year's resolutions be? How will you top last year's performance with the new tools and strategies at your disposal?
Here are our favorite seven New Years' resolutions for the fleet management landscape of 2022.
#1 Explore and Implement New Fleet Technologies
Resolve to explore some or most of the new technologies available for fleets today. This might be the latest device mounting system or a new app that simplifies route management for your drivers and in-vehicle teams. You might explore new customer service technology or install better onboard monitoring systems.
Make your resolution to try several technologies and find at least one worthy of providing a serious upgrade to your fleet's day-to-day performance.
#2 Improve Routing Strategies with Driver Feedback
Routing is an essential part of fleet efficiency and - let's face it - every routing AI has its flaws. The best routes come from a combination of traffic-responsive AI and a good old-fashioned driver experience. This year, resolve to improve how your fleet builds efficient routes based both on AI and driver feedback.
Get your drivers to help you mark off areas of the road that are too icy in the winter, or where the light cycles are the shortest; while at the same time testing route AIs to find the most intuitive and responsive for your region.
#3 Develop a More Rewarding & Motivating Driver Program
Every year, fleet managers should resolve to improve the driver program. Driver programs are essential for work-life balance, skills development, and recruitment. A good driver program will keep drivers motivated to give their best performance on the road and customer service on the job, while also providing a work-life balance to keep them mentally focused and emotionally satisfied with the work.
There is always room for improvement in a driver program. Resolve, this year, to find a few important improvements you can make that benefits both the fleet and drivers as one.
#4 Incorporate Automated Customer Service Features
This year, resolve to spend less time on the phone and create happier customers through automation. Customer service has always been one of the less mentioned and most time-consuming aspects of fleet management. Few fleet managers want to spend extra time on the phone assuring customers that their technicians are on the way. Fortunately, technology has provided solutions to both sides of the problem.
Fleet tracking and live updates can provide your customers peace of mind without requiring a phone call, email, or live chat to assure them. Make your resolution to try out one or more automated customer service tools to reduce your workload and create happier customers.
#5 Upgrade Your Hands-Free Driver Coordination Strategy
Resolve to make your in-vehicle technology safer and more useful for everyone. Since the first Garmin, in-vehicle technology has been both a miracle and a distraction for coordinating with drivers. Drivers spend less time on the phone, but more time looking at a screen to get their directions from HQ. Fortunately, hands-free technology continues to improve with every tech generation.
This year, make your resolution to find new upgrades to your vehicle hands-free technology. Find the right AI-voiced directions, passenger-side device mounting, and distraction-minimizing features to coordinate your drivers on the road.
#6 Improve Your Fleet Team Event Planning
One powerful New Years' resolution for today's company culture movement is event planning. Yup, we mean more parties for your drivers. In 2022, team camaraderie and employment perks are at peak importance. Fortunately, it doesn't take much to show your drivers that you care and add a little fun to the yearly calendar.
Resolve to improve driver overall experience with four to six planned events in 2022. Of course, let your team culture be your guide. Chances are, a little punch, pizza, and music at HQ are all it takes to show your appreciation.
#7 Develop a Red-Folder File for Unplanned Emergencies
Finally, it's time for every fleet to build that red folder file. The ideal New Years' resolution for any business leader is to, finally, prepare for the unexpected.
Do you know how every alien invasion movie has the one guy with the "what if aliens attack" folder? For many companies, COVID was the red-folder moment. Make this year's resolution to slowly build a red folder for every unlikely but possible disaster. What if three drivers come down with the next COVID mutation all at once? What if your city is hit with an earthquake, though it hasn't shaken in 50 years? What if your company suddenly takes on a zero-emissions mandate? It never hurts to plan ahead and if that earthquake does hit, you'll be the guy with the red folder looking like a genius.
For more fleet management insights, tips, or just to talk shop with other fleet managers about their New Years' resolutions, contact us today.