Optimised fleet management is a question of hard cash. The perfect solution
for minimising the fleet with the same transport volume is the lightweight
chassis concept from AL-KO Vehicle Technology. The innovative lightweight
design increases the payload and the useful volume of the vehicle.
Optimised fleet management is essential for fleet operators. The obvious solution is to minimise the fleet and hence reduce the costs. The perfect solution for maintaining the transport volume of the fleet while reducing the operating costs is the lightweight chassis concept from AL-KO Vehicle Technology in combination with a box body. Thanks to the innovative lightweight design, the remaining useful capacity per vehicle after deducting the weight of cab, driver, chassis, fuel and body is increased. A larger weight of goods can thus be transported per vehicle.
But not only a higher payload ensures an optimised fleet. The useful volume per vehicle is also of great importance. A box vehicle with a useful volume of 20.3 m3 can deliver more transport volume at one time than a van with a useful volume of 15 m3. Furthermore, fleet operators profit from the lower loading sills of the low-frame chassis that contributes to greater comfort during loading and unloading, and to shorter loading times. That increases the efficiency of the fleet.
Here you will find a current example of how companies increase their efficiency and reduce their costs through optimised fleet management.
Vehicle technology specialist, AL-KO, explains how the light commercial vehicle fleet can be made more efficient
Fleet management is more than just vehicle management. The tasks include the right choice of vehicle and the analysis of direct and indirect costs. The overriding priority is thereby always logistical efficiency and profitable cost-effectiveness of the company. Vehicle specialist, AL-KO, gives you tips here as to how your fleet can be optimised.
The most effective way of economic optimisation of the commercial vehicle fleet is a comprehensive analysis of the life-cycle costs – also known as “Total Cost of Ownership” (TCO). The assessment of all the operating costs quickly reveals where savings potentials exist. In view of the large number of different TCO analysis models, it is important to decide in favour of one model from the beginning. Only then can comparison values be collected. Here are the most important points that should be covered by the analysis:
The easiest way of reducing costs in the fleet is to minimise the number of vehicles. Vehicles with special AL-KO lightweight chassis ensure that the same performance can nevertheless be achieved. The weight saved allows an increase in payload of up to 150 kg. Such special chassis with optimised dimensions also increase the load volume. That also has a positive influence on the number of vehicles required.
If you are planning to buy a new transporter, there are therefore four main aspects to be considered: Load capacity, useful volume, purchase price and operating costs. Depending on the requirements, a decision has to be taken between box vehicle, refrigerated box vehicle, sales vehicle or platform vehicle.
The direct costs include purchase price or leasing costs for vehicles, fuel costs, costs for hardware, software and IT infrastructure, administrative processes and general management costs. Salaries, rent, electricity and insurances are also included here.
The “indirect costs” resulting from unproductive use by the end users also have to be taken into consideration. These include the costs of data management, non-availability/failure of IT systems necessary for work, self-help and training. Indirect costs can also arise due to the health limitations of the employees due to the constant lifting of heavy goods. This problem is overcome with a low-floor or low-frame chassis. Work becomes easier, more effective and is less demanding on the employees, the time resources and the wallet.
Demand-oriented chassis dimensions and the resulting elimination of the tail lift optimise the vehicle bodies and thus increase the load volume. That reduces the number of vehicles and drivers required. An additional longer-term benefit is that in the light of an expected sharp growth in the 3.5 tonne vehicle class, this contributes to alleviating the shortage of drivers.
In order that each vehicle does not have to be insured individually, it is well worth obtaining fleet insurance offers. In this case, the third-party liability insurance of all the vehicles is classified in the same no-claims class. Fully comprehensive insurance is recommended in the first few years with new vehicles.
GPS data and the evaluation via computer centres or software applications allow vehicles to be tracked and easily monitored on digital maps. It quickly becomes clear where kilometres can be saved. It is of enormous importance that the employees are involved in this process from the very beginning. Caution is called for when it comes to choosing the server or cloud provider. There are good reasons why the subject of data protection is being so broadly discussed today.GPS data and the evaluation via computer centres or software applications allow vehicles to be tracked and easily monitored on digital maps. It quickly becomes clear where kilometres can be saved. It is of enormous importance that the employees are involved in this process from the very beginning. Caution is called for when it comes to choosing the server or cloud provider. There are good reasons why the subject of data protection is being so broadly discussed today.
The trend in fleet management is towards outsourcing. The cooperation with external service providers allows the fleet manager to concentrate on the key aspects and functions of the company. IT, telephone and energy infrastructures are then installed and maintained by the staff of the service provider. A clearly defined mandate results in increased transparency and effectiveness, because the external service provider is an expert in his field. A careful choice of service provider is essential for successful outsourcing, because ultimately the fleet manager places himself in a position of dependence. It is therefore all the more important to monitor contractually agreed services at regular intervals.
In addition to the economic optimisation, the fleet can also be improved from the point of view of the environment. There are plenty of reasons for this! On the one hand, simple methods allow the company’s ecological footprint to be reduced, and on the other hand this strengthens customer links and new customers can be won – because sustainability is playing an ever more important role.
The easiest road to CO2 optimisation is the choice of low-consumption vehicles and minimisation of the number of vehicles required. In this context, ecological safety training courses can be held to reduce the fuel consumption. And anyone thinking of not emitting exhaust gases into the environment should think about an investment in electric transporters.
AL-KO is the specialist for lightweight chassis. We offer an innovative concept for more loading capacity, maximum flexibility of the dimensions, a lower loading sill and improved efficiency thanks to lower tare weight.
AL-KO is a certified partner of FIAT Professional, Mercedes-Benz Vans and Volkswagen commercial vehicles and meets the strictest automotive quality standards.
Every year AL-KO manufactures a five-digit number of innovative automotive chassis in five works worldwide. The largest production facility is the works in Ettenbeuren in the south of Germany.