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  • Despite global supply chain disruptions, demand for equipment has not faltered, making transportation as important as ever for rental companies everywhere
  • But due to the continued shortage of qualified drivers, many equipment rental companies find themselves struggling to staff their transportation departments
  • Fortunately, with the right transportation management software, logistics teams can route their pickups and deliveries more efficiently, enabling them to fulfill more loads with their current personnel

With the economy grappling with supply chain bottlenecks and disruptions in global trade, many domestic operators are reckoning with near-unprecedented demand this year. Q1 saw trailer utilization reach record highs, with full-service lease and rental fleets nearing 97% utilization rates.

At first, this might seem good for operators, as it does mean they’re maximizing their revenue. However such high fleet utilization comes with significant risks. It leaves operators and customers vulnerable to disruptions, reduces the window for crucial maintenance, and speeds up the depreciation rate of a fleet.

High fleet utilization across the industry also causes the cost of vehicles and parts to rise, as many fleets look to mitigate the above problems and secure more business. All the above means fleet managers are pressed to find ways to reign in fleet utilization while taking advantage of every viable revenue opportunity.

To address this, many fleet managers should be looking to adopt new techniques and practices to use their fleet capacity. Thankfully managers have many modern technologies at their fingertips to allow them to discover new efficiencies.

Route optimization software

When running a fleet, suboptimal routes can represent hundreds or thousands of wasted hours. Time spent taking a longer than necessary route doesn’t just mean wasted fuel, but it also represents a tremendous opportunity cost in the form of wasted fleet utilization.

Then, there’s the issue of wasted driver hours: with the US facing a shortage of 80,000 truck drivers last year, wasting drivers’ time means a significant waste of talent, the most precious resource in your fleet. And that’s not to mention what suboptimal routing can mean in terms of customer delays, which could mean a drop in customer satisfaction and repeat business.

Thankfully, fleets have new tools to help reduce wasted miles and hours, cutting down on overall fleet utilization while allowing teams to fulfill their jobs – modern route optimization software. Leveraging inputs like traffic and weather data and real-time updates as to driver locations, the current generation of route optimization software is now able to re-plan routes in real time to cut down on wasted miles.

With these dynamic route plans that adapt to current road conditions, customers can expect more prompt deliveries while also reducing the pressure on drivers to rush deliveries and risk accidents.

High fleet utilization across the industry also causes the cost of vehicles and parts to rise, as many fleets look to mitigate the above problems and secure more business. All the above means fleet managers are pressed to find ways to reign in fleet utilization while taking advantage of every viable revenue opportunity.

Contactless delivery

The pandemic encouraged a rapid transformation in how we send and receive parcels. Contactless delivery has been broadly normalized, with the traditional signature replaced by proof of delivery software that allows packages to be left in confidence with a customer without any physical contact occurring.

This is a big boon for the industry, given electronic proof of delivery is often accompanied by compelling data that a package was safely left at an address – such as via a photograph and time-stamped GPS data. This improves the overall delivery success rate, cutting down on wasted repeat attempts to deliver a package – and thus wasted hours for fleets.

In the future, fleet managers who want to make more effective use of their fleet’s time shouldn’t be afraid to normalize contactless delivery procedures and tools. With better outcomes for delivery staff and customers, contactless represents a more efficient and secure way of handling virtually all deliveries while improving fleet utilization.

Boost dispatcher capacity

Dispatchers can be a bottleneck for fleets. Their capacity to triage your fleet’s resources and allocate the best driver for a given job is a significant determinant of how quickly and effectively an order is handled. Anything that helps dispatchers make quicker and better decisions ultimately means less time spent by jobs in queues and less time spent by drivers traveling to collect deliveries.

Modern digital solutions are the key to further empowering dispatchers in this area, especially in streamlining the fact-finding process around jobs. Many dispatchers can be trapped by complicated environments that demand they manually research data points like driver locations and requested collection and delivery times. As opposed to this, fleets can centralize this information via dashboards that provide a one-stop place for dispatchers to get all the information they need to make decisions.

Dashboards can also provide dispatchers with precise real-time data about the entire fleet’s status, allowing them to spend less time trying to predict where drivers will be or where potential bottlenecks may arise.

All this means more profitable and effective decisions all around, while also allowing dispatchers to handle more orders.

How Wynne can help you

With over thirty years of experience, the Wynne team is very familiar with fleets’ challenges and knows what they need to better use their drivers, vehicles, and time. As a result of our long partnership with the logistics industry, we’ve made sure that our industry-leading Logistics Solution addresses significant challenges like route optimization and data-driven decision-making for dispatcher teams.

Offering unprecedented levels of insight about the state of your fleet and your drivers, our integrated solution can give you the tools to ensure your fleet utilization levels are both sustainable and profitable. If you want to learn more about Wynne’s Logistics Solution first-hand, take a product tour to see what it offers in practice.

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