Five Things Every New Fleet Manager Needs to Know
Congratulations! Your dedication to excellence has paid off and you have found yourself in a brand new role as a fleet manager. While this is an exciting opportunity, it can also come with a bit of a learning curve. Success in your position requires industry knowledge and the ability to keep several plates spinning at once. According to some of the top SureCam clients, these are the top five characteristics of successful fleet managers:
1. Good Communication Skills
Good communication skills will take you far in your new role managing your fleet. By setting up a clear communication plan from the start of your position, you can streamline your operations and save time. It will be important to determine when, how, and how frequently you plan to share information with your superiors and your drivers. Many fleet managers find it helpful to have regular safety meetings to touch base with their drivers. These “toolbox talks” give you the chance to keep training, review best safety practices, and go over any other company news that may come up. These are our ten favorite toolbox talk topics.
2. Staying on Top of Industry Trends
A major part of your new role as a fleet manager is becoming an expert in industry trends so you are aware of common issues affecting fleet operations as well as new and emerging solutions for your team. Anticipating changes in the market is an excellent way to help your business stay ahead of the curve on new policies and procedures. This will simplify practices for both you and your drivers and will help ease your team into any new changes that you might need to work into your plan down the line.
3. Embracing New Technology
Bringing new technology into fleet management plans is becoming a more popular practice every day. Adding new tech items can provide many simple solutions to problems every modern day fleet manager faces during their career. Whether you are wanting to improve best safety practices, help with dispatching, or create a driver coaching program, the right technology package is at the center of it all. You can read more here about the different types of dash cameras available on the market today so you can find a solution that best fits your team.
4. Data Management
When thinking about the kinds of technology you want to help manage your fleet, you also need to think about how you plan to manage the data that comes with it. Many new fleet technology options come with a variety of features so you can get exactly the information you want. Have a plan for how you will manage the data your cameras and telematics platform collects.
Fleet managers should consider their specific goals for their technology package so they can choose a solution that measures metrics that will be most useful to them without the extra noise. You can download our 9 point checklist for choosing a camera solution here.
5. Invest in Your Employees and Your Culture
Taking a few extra steps to create an engaging workplace where your employees feel valued can make a world of difference in your fleet management efforts. Professional growth and development are a top priority for modern employees so helping to meet these needs can help your company fight back against the driver shortage facing the transportation industry. In fact, recent surveys have shown:
42% of employees have said that learning and development are the most important factors when deciding where to work
86% of millennials have said that training opportunities would keep them from leaving their current jobs.
With this information in mind, setting up a few ways you can engage your employees and deepen their involvement in your company throughout the year can have a huge payoff for your business. A few examples to keep in mind would be:
Incorporating older more experienced employees into your onboarding training program by having them do ride alongs with younger drivers.
Providing ongoing training sessions with your fleet using video footage from your video safety solution. This is a great way to show drivers areas to watch out for and is a way to reward drivers for good safe behaviors on the road. You can read more about setting up regular safety meetings here.
Start a safety incentives program. This keeps your drivers and your brand safe by rewarding your drivers who go the extra mile for safety.
These tips are all important, but the best thing you can do for your fleet is to make safety part of your culture. And doesn’t have to be complicated! Even simple, casual conversations with your team can make a huge difference, and remember to take things one day at a time. The SureCam team is here to help you each step of the way.