Fleet Productivity Killers

Top 5 Fleet Productivity Killers

Posted by Stacey Papp

We come to work with the best intentions to make a big dent in that bloated task list or, on a good day, make the whole thing disappear. But between the first cup of coffee and heading home, we’re waylaid by roadblocks and distractions. Below are the top five productivity killers and some hints to help avoid them.

Lack of Planning
This is a common challenge. A job with a critical goal but no plan or end time can stretch into infinity. A driver hits the road with a set of destinations and a GPS at the ready but hasn’t taken the time to plan the route and is soon driving twice as far as necessary. Create tools and processes for ongoing jobs and organize that task list by type and priority and soon, you’re never staying late and you’re turning in your best work. Plan that ideal route ahead of time, and watch efficiency rise. 

Document Management
Nothing cuts into productivity quite like lack of document organization. A lost receipt, misplaced work order or a driver who gets to a service call with the wrong work instructions, not only create delays and mistakes, they make the company look bad. A cloud-based fleet management solution prevents such a thing by putting all vital documents and job information in one, easily accessible place, making the driver and company look good while boosting efficiency.

Surfing the Internet
The Internet is a useful work tool, but the lure of personal business is strong. That fantasy football lineup isn’t just going to set itself. A few minutes of online play here and there adds up – and not just in the office. With smartphones connecting everybody from everywhere, even a driver in the field can get caught up in web time-wasting – hopefully not while on the road though, which creates a safety and productivity risk. Bad results and bad PR is not a good combination. Set clear guidelines about personal surfing, and let the honor system prevail. But keep an eye out for activity. Facebook posters have very few secrets. 

Slow Starters

Many drivers arrive to work on time only to get caught up in office chit-chat at the water cooler or spends extra time prepping the vehicle for the day’s work. Next thing you know, the driver is behind schedule before even hitting the road. A friendly office is great, but try to limit socializing to breaks or off-work hours. Creating a schedule for route prep – and holding drivers to it – will have them on the road on schedule and ahead of the game.

Not Knowing How Time Is Spent
An unfocused day is an unproductive day. This is especially true for fleets who regularly perform a variety of jobs day-in-day-out in several locations. Any kind of schedule drift really adds up. Worse, not knowing where drivers are when an emergency comes up can be a catastrophe for business. Keeping a simple journal of activities – or leveraging a solution that tracks and reports on driver activity – can let you know where those areas of slippage are and get you on the path to closing them up. 
The vast majority of drivers want to do good work and be as productive as possible, but even the best intentions get muddled in a complex workplace. Clear and simple guidelines and the tools to better do the job will pay off in several ways:

  • A more productive fleet – with productivity killers tamed, watch your efficiency grow. 
  • Happier drivers – a productive driver is rewarded with the knowledge of a job well done – as well as any incentives a company might offer.
  • Happier customers – it’s been said time and again that happier drivers give better service, which translates to better quality for customers.
  • Satisfied management – a well-oiled, smooth running business gives leadership ample reason to smile.

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