Steps to Building the Ideal Fleet Selector
All new 2018 models are here and it’s time to start ordering! So just update your previous specs to the new model year and order away, right? Well, maybe you should look into it a bit more than that. In order to effectively manage a fleet program it’s essential to have the correct vehicles in place. Utilizing incorrect vehicle types, engine sizes, or even added options can quickly drive up the overall cost of the fleet program. So put those over excited vehicle-eligible drivers on hold and take some vital steps before locking in your updated fleet selector.
Create a Budget
The first step in creating your company’s vehicle selector is to determine what you have to work with. Leased vehicles should be budgeted by looking at the total sum of the anticipated lease and service costs. It’s important to not only consider the type of vehicle, but to also determine the ideal cycling parameters for each vehicle type.
Evaluate Total Cost of Ownership
Utilize your fleet provider’s capabilities to forecast the total cost of ownership of each potential vehicle before making the final decision. This forecast will factor in CAP cost, incentives, projected fuel expenses, depreciation, maintenance costs, and insurance premiums, among other expense elements.
Keep Drivers Happy
While the Total Cost of Ownership process will aid to identify the most cost effective vehicles, it’s also important to provide your drivers with options that help to make their vehicle more comfortable. Being that many drivers spend more time in their vehicle than in the office, do what you can to curtail the risk of high employee turnover by providing quality vehicles that fit their needs. Whether this means adding options, or selecting vehicles with more interior space, look at what you can do to make the vehicles as fitting as possible. Happy drivers, happy life…or something like that.
Consider Geographic Factors
Do you have drivers that operate in different geographical landscapes? Be sure to consider engine size, towing capabilities, drivetrain, and safety features when designing selector groups for the different landscapes your drivers operate in.
Review Selector Regularly
Selector reviews should not only be completed at the end or beginning of model years, but also during the ordering process. Pay attention to driver comments and identify vehicles that are performing above and below expectations. This can also help to identify any options that need to be added, such as an upgraded accessory package.
Define Groups by Job Function
It may be obvious that your sales force will need different vehicles than your delivery/production team, but it goes beyond just ordering sedans and trucks for the different employees. What cargo and towing capabilities do you need? Do some drivers need 4×4 capabilities while others only need 4×2? Need roof racks or an interior racks and bins package? Optimize each vehicle type for the job function.
Establish Driver-Paid Options Policy
Be sure to clearly establish the driver paid option policy. Drivers should have a clear understanding of what they are and aren’t allowed to add. It’s also vital that the payment process is clearly outlined and a policy is in place for any end-of-lease reimbursements upon the remarketing of the vehicle.
Consider Manufacturer Incentives
Consider all manufacturer incentives before choosing a model as your fleet’s flagship vehicle. Pairing with a single manufacturer can be advantageous in regards to the incentives your company will receive. Be sure to stay in touch with your manufacturer representative as much as possible and get the best in
Pre-Determine Additional Options
As vehicles are redesigned, manufacturers often times change what comes as a standard option. Review the specifications each time a new model year begins in order to confirm all of your standard options are included on the updated specification. It’s also a good time to review the previous vehicle’s issues and any driver comments in order to update what the company covers as standard options.
Contemplate Resale Factors
While trends will change year over year, it’s important to review remarketing trends on any models that you’re considering as a fleet option. You should also consider how your equipment and added options will affect the vehicle’s resale value.