With spring right around the corner, landscaping companies will soon be ramping up to meet blossoming demands. It’s go time! And whether you’re waiting for the snow to clear or you’re in a warmer location with year-round landscaping demands, you need to be on top of your equipment requirements heading into the upcoming, extra-busy season. Fleet expenses are a major part of most landscaping companies’ overall budgets and can fluctuate, depending on usage and maintenance. Your fleet is your lifeblood – reliable and well-maintained equipment gets your crews to the jobsites and makes them faster, more efficient, and more profitable.
Over the decades we have amassed a library of resources, both internal and external, which help our team and our partners do their jobs with skill and confidence. Peruse these pages for current trends and thought leadership, our newsletters, and tips that we have found helpful over the years. And if you have any questions for us, we’re always here for you.
A couple of weeks ago we talked all about the pros and cons of diesel fuel options; regular, renewable and biodiesel. Renewable gas is an alternative fuel option that works much like regular gasoline, but is sustainable, often cleaner, and, essentially, in infinite supply. This week, we want to address the “green” options for gasoline and answer some of the questions you may have floating around in your mind. Questions such as: “What are the different options? How do I choose which is best for my fleet? Can I blend a new option in or will I have a scheduling nightmare on my hands trying to switch over?”
The ambiguity around what constitutes “normal” wear and tear on company vehicles can be annoying at best, and at worst, costly. It’s important to have a clear understanding and policy of what kind of wear and tear is to be expected and accepted, versus actual damages. It’s important because when it comes to terminating a lease, trading in, or reselling, you don’t want to have any surprises regarding the value of the vehicles. So, what types of wear and tear are to be expected? Let’s break it down by section.
Winter. It comes every year, and yet we tend to freeze up when first faced with the adverse driving conditions it brings. Black ice, blowing snow, and mechanical failures are some of the leading reasons behind the many winter-related accidents reported by businesses every year. This year, get ahead of the winter challenges your fleet faces. We’ve compiled a list of winter driving tips to share and discuss with your drivers to help keep everyone safe and warm throughout the season.
It’s never-ending – the discussions in your fleet surrounding company-provided vehicles. And more often than not, personal use is both a sensitive area and a deciding factor. So, how do you avoid an ongoing discussion and flared tempers? You need to decide how you can best accommodate drivers’ needs – work and personal – while minding your bottom line. But don’t worry, the management of personal use can be rather simple; it’s the implementation and reporting that can get a little harried. Here are some aspects to consider when drawing up your policy:
Drivers are the life-force of your fleet. Keeping drivers happy and healthy is not only in everyone’s best interest, but it can actually increase productivity. So, it should come as no surprise that teaching, promoting and demonstrating proper ergonomics to your employees is a smart move. And, as there are quite a few scenarios for potential injury with manual materials handling, we’ve compiled a list for you of dos and don’ts when it comes to cargo handling ergonomics.
Once a distant dream, driverless cars are now very much a reality. Several big-name manufacturers have been performing road tests and running diagnostics in the race to have the first autonomous vehicle ready for mass consumption. Just last month, new federal guidelines were announced that aim to help speed up the technology and get driverless cars on the road sooner. What does this mean for fleets and fleet managers? Well, there are a few components to consider:
Vehicle selection is no simple task. A common hang-up we hear from customers is knowing what type of vans or pickup trucks they should use in their fleet. When it comes to choosing between the two, total cost of ownership is important, but there are several additional elements that can be just as critical to consider. For example, job function, efficiency, driver comfort, and location(s) are all essential when deciding how to stock your fleet. To help, we’ve compiled a short list of questions and considerations for you to take under advisement before picking a side.
High turnover rates and a shortage of drivers aren’t anything new for the fleet industry. But, when it comes to recruiting methods, something new just might be the solution. In today’s ever-evolving world, you need to make sure your recruiting and employee retention practices line up with the search methods and priorities of the current workforce.
Pre-trip and post-trip vehicle inspections are a best practice for every fleet, and for good reason. They keep drivers in tune with their vehicles, while carving out time to catch any maintenance or safety issues before they become a road-side call. Inspections also have the added benefit of helping the vehicle last longer and wear better.