A 2021 Silver Lining Recap and Expectations for 2022
The 2021 calendar year proved to be just as challenging for the fleet industry as 2020. Your fleet operation needed to overcome supply chain limitations, production shutdowns, and gas and oil shortages, all while continuing to keep your employees safe as the pandemic lingered into 2021. Needless to say, the past few years have been like no other for your fleet business.
The setbacks of 2020 and 2021 notwithstanding, there have been quite a few positives to note as we continue to adjust to the new “normal” moving into 2022. Here’s a look back at some of the challenging questions in the fleet industry over the past year and some positive solutions that kept your business on track.
How Do I Improve my Fleet Management Strategy ?
Despite the disruptions in the supply chain, many in the fleet industry have used this time as an opportunity to reevaluate their fleet acquisition strategy, specifically evaluating the question of whether to buy, lease or finance their fleet. This line of strategic thinking, or rethinking, has organizations breaking out of their business isolations, or silofications, between budgeting, procurement, and operations to better manage their fleet system and develop a stronger overall fleet recovery plan moving forward.
Do Electric Vehicles Make Sense for my Fleet?
The future of electric vehicles (EV) is quickly beginning to take shape, and the federal government is doing its part to encourage businesses to plug into the EV experience. The key in determining if your fleet operation is ready to begin flipping your inventory to EV depends highly on your operation’s ability to have adequate charging bases , even if it’s at your driver’s home. No one is turning out the lights on EV anytime soon. It’s time to begin looking at your EV strategy and how it makes sense for your operation moving forward.
Should I Be Using Telematics for My Fleet?
In a year where fleet management seems turned upside down , telematics may never have played a more important role in your business operation. With low driver availability and vehicle shortages at record numbers, having reliable data on vehicle performance, optimization, and driver safety, never seemed quite as important as it did in 2021.
Unique Ways Telematics assisted in the COVID-19 Fight
And if telematics didn’t play a big enough role in fleet management in 2021, it most definitely played a very important role in vaccine distribution. Vaccines require refrigerated trucks to be transported across the country, where a variation of a few degrees could destroy truckloads of vaccines – this is where telematics comes into play. Refrigerated trucks are equipped with sensor systems built directly into their telematics devices, so a driver can make a stop without worrying about any potential damage during idling or even turning off their vehicle. Let’s give a shout out to telematics technology!
Managing Costs through Fuel and Gas Shortage Concerns
Early year fuel projection reports drove concerns around the cost of oil and gas and the impacts they may have on the fleet industry. The Colonial Pipeline shortages on the east coast did nothing to ease concerns throughout the year either. However, with the mobile app you’re in a better position to manage your fleet operation and understand your driver’s fuel status. Your drivers can use the insights® mobile app “near me” feature to find fuel stations as well as ARI in-network maintenance facilities, keeping your fleet vehicles moving forward.
How Do Supply Chain Constraints Re-Shape My Vehicle Replacement Strategy?
Did supply demands create decisions for you to delay or skip vehicle replacements in 2020? Whether they did or didn’t, the supply shortages have wreaked havoc on MY2021 vehicles. As a result, it might be time to revisit your supply chain strategy and work with a trusted partner when it comes to your fleet business. Our goal is to assist you in creating a fleet management process to easily manage your fleet business.
Beware of the CAT Burglars
Unfortunately this is also a bit of desperate times for some, so be aware that the theft rates across the U.S. and Canada for catalytic converters have increased quite a bit in the past year. If you have trucks, SUVs, or hybrids in your fleet, be cautious as it takes less than two minutes for a thief to slide under a vehicle and steal the catalytic converter. Be sure to protect your vehicle by parking in well-lit areas, locking car doors, and adding or activating alarms, as well as moving devices from open sight – anything to keep from looking like an easy target.
Is Now a Good Time for Remarketing Vehicles?
If there’s ever a good time for you to look at remarketing aged or underutilized fleet vehicles, it’s now. With shortages across the country, the market is trending as favorably as it ever has (or maybe ever will again) for used vehicles. Commercial equipment is in the same boat. If you have older equipment sitting around a warehouse corner, dust it off and sell it.
Business Lessons from 2021 Create Opportunities in 2022
The challenges your fleet operation faced in 2021 are the building blocks for 2022. If we’ve learned anything over the past few years, it’s that we need to remain agile and flexible in our decision making ability and how it impacts our business. For fleet managers, we are still in unchartered waters, but you should remain steadfast in the knowledge that you have a trusted partner in us, and we are just as vested in you and keeping your business afloat as you are. We remain dedicated to helping you and your business through these strange times.
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