Yes, we all know diesel fuel prices are killing your fleet management budget. For you fleet managers, diesel fuel prices are just hitting your fleet fueling costs it is also starting to increase other costs associated with petroleum products. Bridgestone Tire for example just increased a 12% increase in fleet companies tire cost effective immediately. Why? Increased costs in raw materials and energy costs that is leading the way to your fleet management programs costing you more to get the tires rolling down the highway.
What else can a fleet manager expect with increasing diesel fuel prices and how it will affect their fleet management solutions to lower prices? Here is a short list:
- Diesel fuel prices will remain at the levels they are or more than likely go higher during the year. Most fuel analysis believe we will see fleet fueling prices at a nationwide level above $3.60. Things that you could do to lessen that blow would be a fuel management system through an outsourced fuel management company. A closer review of fuel cards, mobile fueling, fleet cards, fuel inventory management, fleet credit card services to name a few.
- Diesel fuel additives will also increase since most raw materials that go into diesel fuel additives are from petroleum products plus the increased costs in delivery. To help reduce some of your increases in diesel fuel additive now, would be order now before costs dramatically increase, order a larger supply so you can keep your freight rates lower in bulk. Find out about prepay discounts.
- Motor oil and lubes are directly affected by crude oil price and your fleet management programs. Try to use synthetic oils and lubes to reduce costs. It might increase your fleet management budget short term but you will reduce the number of oil changes, plus reduce the freight cost to have the products brought to you and taken away. Those companies fueling costs are going up as well.
- Tires as we mentioned. Look to keep them properly inflated. That does mean fleet managers to have driver bang on the tires with a mallet. Spend the money and provide each fleet companies truck with a tire pressure gauge. Make checking the tire pressure on all of the tires part of the routine. Depending on how low your tire pressure is you can be throwing fuel savings right out the window. Make it each for the driver to put air in the truck tires. If it is difficult for them to do it, there is a good chance it’s not going to get done.
- Front end alignments will increase your fleet management costs? Every fleet manager that is reading this is saying what, how is the increase in diesel fuel prices going to cost my fleet management services more money because we have to fix front end alignments. Simple! Asphalt. Have you seen the snow, ice, sleet and extra cold weather we have had over this winter? State and Local fleet management road crews have been throwing salt down like crazy to protect us while we drive. This salt and cold weather creates pot holes. The way to fix a pot hole is asphalt. Asphalt is made with petroleum product from crude oil. Almost all states and local governments fleet management programs for winter are over budget, so as we slide into Spring (whenever that might be, according to the groundhog and early spring) these fleet managers who were probably given less money than needed and now are over budget will have to repair pot holes with asphalt. Expensive asphalt. Drive carefully there goes another front end.
As with a difficult winter, I think we are in for a tough year for fleet fueling. The best way to take care of your fleet companies, fleet management is to be proactive. Look over your current fuel savings plans. Figure out how is the best way to control your fuel management costs. Who is best on your staff to head a special task force to ensure fuel savings is taking place and not being wasted. On one last note, high fueling costs mean higher diesel fuel thefts. Review your fuel inventory management, your fuel card – fleet card set ups, your mobile fueling companies invoices and fuel analysis on all fueling transactions. Don’t let your company be taken by fleet fueling theft. 80% of all fueling theft comes from those that work for you. Have your fuel management systems in place. 267-482-6155 for more fueling help.
Sokolis Group will help your fuel management program get to where your company deserves it should be.