Fleet Maintenance Software Pays Returns

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Posted: Monday, October 25, 2010 8:41 am

A fleet of vehicles and equipment is one the biggest and most important investments that an organization makes. But when these valuable assets break-down, you not only incur the cost of repair and replacement, your workers are often prevented from getting their jobs done - costing you even more time and money.

In the past, many organizations relied on reactive maintenance and paper records to keep vehicles and equipment functioning - you know, the old "don't fix what isn't broken" mentality. And beyond an oil change every few thousand miles, many of these fleet assets remained in service without much additional thought.

But just like any asset in your infrastructure, a little regular maintenance can go a long way. At the very least, your due diligence will provide reasonable insurance that when called upon, your vehicles and equipment will be ready to perform. But the benefits don't stop there. A routine maintenance schedule can also help you save money and budget more accurately.

People scoffed when President Barack Obama famously proposed that America air-up its tires to help curb our national dependence on fossil fuels. But the truth is that by keeping tires properly inflated, you can save up to 8 cents per gallon of gas per vehicle. An organization that applies this number to its entire fleet of vehicles will quickly realize that there is a substantial savings to be had with this one simple act.

The easiest way to establish regular fleet maintenance program is with a small investment in technology. In today's municipal market, there are several applications that are specific to the management of equipment and vehicles. While these applications differ in scope, depth and features, each is designed to help you implement and regulate a fleet maintenance program.

With the right technology, you can create and assign a detailed service schedule for each piece of equipment and vehicle in your fleet. Once implemented, you will have the ability to establish maintenance actions based on measurable indicators - such as vehicle age, mileage, or service hours - and schedule per vehicle maintenance activities at regular service intervals. This practice also gives you the opportunity to track unique vehicle directives, including specific maintenance needs, part numbers, warranty information, and materials needed to perform each assigned activity.

A regular, established practice of fleet maintenance also helps you streamline the labor and activities involved with upkeep, giving you the opportunity to track and maintain all current and historical vehicle and equipment information - including maintenance activities, upkeep materials, and skilled labor - and manage a task from initial request, to the scheduling of service, and through its completion.

By gauging these vital factors you can anticipate the future condition of your entire fleet and begin to address problems before they arise.

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