Every part of fleet management, including delivery route optimization, will be critical in the coming years to cut budgets and streamline operations. Costs are getting higher, and the margin for error is getting tighter, meaning that fleet businesses have to work harder than ever to be at the top of their game. Route optimization can help across the board in fleet management, with everything from driver safety to cutting costs to improving operations. You may be surprised at how many ways route optimization can address the issues fleets face in today’s world. This article will discuss these fleet challenges along with route optimization strategies and how they can combat problems.
What Challenges are Fleets Facing?
The problems that fleets face these days may seem overwhelming, but if we can identify them, they become easier to tackle. We will break down these issues below to outline some solutions that route optimization can offer.
Rising Fuel Costs
Fuel is the most substantial part of most fleets’ budgets. It makes up a whopping 60% of the average fleet’s operating budgets, a staggering figure compared to other fleet expenses. This is why fleets are always looking for ways to cut back on fuel costs. The challenge is that the entire fleet business revolves around fuel and cannot function without it.
Rising Labor Costs
Labor costs are at an all-time high, particularly for truck drivers. Because the job is so taxing, and because there is a shortage in the workforce, drivers are demanding higher compensation. In 2017, wages and benefits reached a five-year high, and they have only been climbing since then. Driver wages amount to about a third of motor carrier expenses. Of course, fleets need to hire good drivers, so it is essential to find ways to cut costs in other areas.
The driver shortage has been on fleets’ minds for the last several years, and it only continues to worsen as time goes on. The issue is that the average truck driver is reaching retirement age, and there are few younger drivers to replace them. The pandemic has made matters worse because even fewer people are willing to enter the supply chain due to the stress placed upon it. Businesses not only have trouble finding drivers but keeping them as well. If drivers aren’t happy in their jobs, it’s easy for them to quit and find new jobs elsewhere. If businesses aren’t as efficient and safe as their competitors, they may find it hard to hold onto their drivers.
High Customer Expectations
Customers have higher expectations than ever before when it comes to timeliness and communication. Large corporations have put these expectations in customers’ minds, but smaller businesses may have trouble meeting their customers’ new needs without as many resources at their disposal. If these smaller companies can’t find a way to meet their customers’ higher expectations, they may be left behind for competitors that do.
How You Can Use Route Optimization to Address These Concerns
There are various ways that route optimization can help your business address fleet concerns, without putting any strain on your business. We will go over the different ways your business can combat these issues by harnessing route optimization software to your advantage.
One of the top priorities in these challenging times is cutting costs without sacrificing productivity or quality labor. There are a few ways that route optimization software helps your fleet to cut costs. The most significant way is by reducing your fleet’s fuel use. Fuel use is one of the biggest drains on a fleet’s budget, but of course, it is necessary to a fleet’s operations. Route optimization software gets your drivers to their destination using the least amount of fuel possible, meaning that your fleet will save a significant amount of money on fuel use.
Another way that you can save money with route optimization software is by reducing your maintenance costs. Your drivers spend less time idling or driving around lost. Fleets are always looking for ways to increase the lifespan of their vehicles, so this is a significant advantage.
Route optimization goes a long way towards improving your fleet’s operations. It takes all of your fleet’s jobs for the day and creates a route that helps you get to these destinations on time in the most efficient way possible. With route optimization software, you can optimize your vehicles to ensure that you have the correct number of drivers to complete the jobs you have. This means you can use any extra vehicles to complete more jobs, allowing you to grow your business or even sell them to recoup the costs. There are a lot of ways that route optimization software improves your day-to-day operations.
The driver shortage means that businesses need to appeal to drivers as much as they can. Drivers aren’t going to choose a fleet that is disorganized or unsafe. If deadlines are challenging to meet and everyday operations are stressful, it will not be worth any money you offer. Route optimization software ensures that these operations run smoothly, so drivers don’t have to worry about stressful, frustrating days. They’re much more likely to want to work at a place that not only offers competitive pay but has organized procedures and operations.
Improve Customer Service
As mentioned, customers these days are focused highly on communication and timeliness. Route optimization software ensures you can meet both of these expectations. Not only can you communicate with customers when you are nearby, so they are not waiting all day for whenever you may show up, but you can also ensure that you will always show up on time. Your routes will always get you where you need to be in a timely fashion so your customers will be satisfied.
Get the Best Route Optimization Software with Azuga
Azuga offers the best, most comprehensive fleet management solution on the market. It helps fleets manage everything across the board, from safety, to finances, to route optimization. If your fleet is looking to streamline its operations, Azuga is the way to go. To test it out for yourself, try out a free demo on our website. You’re sure to be impressed with what we can do together.