What’s popular in an industry might not always be what’s best for your particular business. There are benefits to leaning on experts in your field to develop a base plan, but every company has its own unique standards and decisions to be made. How is the status quo affecting your business?
When common practices cause unique challenges
An ARI customer in the industrial field with more than 6,000 trucks recently found themselves asking a very similar question. At the direction of their former fleet provider, they followed the industry standard of ordering only one light-duty pick-up model from only one manufacturer.
While consistency and standardization can be a smart financial move, it became clear that the ½ ton trucks were under-performing in the field and needed more maintenance in shorter cycles than what was financially sensible.
Identifying the weight of the problem
After reviewing the client’s data, we suspected the cost culprit was overloading. Overloading is a common issue in industries that rely heavily on trucks to get the job done. Material weight isn’t usually a priority for drivers when they are laser-focused on serving their customers, but fleet ends up paying the price.
ARI’s team set to work to confirm the underlying issue, weighing several trucks at one of the customer’s garages. We found that the trucks were carrying an average of 1,000 lbs. over the manufacturer’s stated payload rating. With that in mind, we went into the customer’s spring order cycle with a new plan of attack. We recommended upgrading to a ¾ ton truck that could handle an additional 2,000 lbs compared to their current selector. This would increase the reliability of the truck while also making them safer for drivers.
Doing the right thing can lighten your financial load
When comparing the costs of the current ½ ton truck versus the new recommended ¾ ton truck, we found that upgrading trucks in the spring and fall order cycle would save the customer $4,000 per vehicle. for a total acquisition savings of $2 million. The long-term cost savings will include downtime avoidance and less frequent replacement of tires, brakes and potentially powertrain components.
The customer was so happy with the enhancement that we’re now considering more eco-friendly options for future ordering cycles, which could eventually lead to even bigger savings. Sometimes, big issues in your fleet can be solved with one small fix.
To learn more about how to take your fleet’s performance to the next level read Does Your Fleet Hold Potential for Greatness? You can also subscribe to The Morning Brake, for once- or twice-weekly news from the fleet and automotive industries and more.