Enterprise Fleet Maintenance: Benefits & Challenges - Pitstop

Fleet Maintenance For Enterprise Fleets: A Complete Guide

14 June 2023

Read time: 7 min

The Benefits & Challenges of Enterprise Fleet Maintenance

For a fleet manager, achieving a high level of performance from your vehicles is critical for the fleet’s success, but it can be challenging to do so consistently, especially when managing an enterprise fleet. As fleet costs per driver continue to rise, and vehicles become more complex, it’s vital to implement strategies that improve productivity and reduce operational disruptions. The good news is that there is a plethora of new technology and services that can identify performance gaps, allowing predictive measures to be taken – thereby lowering a fleet’s maintenance cost without compromising productivity.

This latest generation of fleet maintenance tools is especially beneficial for enterprise fleet managers, as they often must sort through tens of thousands of daily data points from hundreds or even thousands of fleet vehicles. Effective enterprise fleet maintenance requires sharp analytical skills and a well-planned approach but there are certain tools that allow an enterprise fleet manager to quickly prioritize data and statistics, enabling future maintenance trends to be identified.   

Challenges In Enterprise Fleet Maintenance

Driver Vehicle Fault Reporting

The importance of effective communication between vehicle operators and managers and rapid reporting of potential vehicle faults cannot be understated. This is often made challenging with drivers being dispersed throughout a region or country, and the isolation of their job making fault reporting difficult.

Clear and efficient communication practices can ensure that potential engine issues are reported early to avoid a roadside breakdown which can put a truck out of service for hours or even days. By ensuring that problems are quickly identified and promptly addressed, effective communication helps prevent minor issues from escalating into more significant problems.

Organizing Data Sets For Quick Analysis

While data is valuable for gaining insight into a fleet vehicle’s health and status, given the size of some enterprise fleets, it can also be overwhelming and challenging to manage. With vehicles constantly generating data points, enterprise fleet management professionals must handle tens of thousands of data points daily from their fleet of hundreds or thousands of vehicles.

The sheer volume of data can be daunting, especially as it accumulates over time. Without an efficient way to analyze the data collected, this can lead to a cycle of chaos, as the long data goes unanalyzed, the harder it becomes to make sense of it, leaving fleet managers trapped in the cycle of reacting to problems.

Reducing Vehicle Downtime From Unscheduled Repairs

When a fleet vehicle breaks down, it has a detrimental impact on an enterprise fleet company’s business, operations, and finances. Downtime not only causes increased costs for towing and emergency repairs, but it can also cause major disruptions in the fleet’s schedule.

These delays are often exacerbated by supply chain difficulties, such as a shortage of vehicle parts or unavailability of labor, making it challenging to quickly get vehicles back on the road. And as a result of continuing delays in vehicle manufacturing, many fleet companies are keeping their existing fleet vehicles in service longer than planned, leading to higher incidents of unscheduled repairs and more complicated enterprise fleet maintenance schedules.

Unutilized Data Sets

It’s not uncommon for fleet managers to inherit their companies existing enterprise fleet maintenance and repair plans. Preventing unnecessary vehicle downtime requires vigilance concerning maintenance and repairs. Most fleet managers understand the advantages of a preventative maintenance schedule and may already be utilizing telematics to automate maintenance and repair tasks. However, there is a crucial, unseen area of data that is often overlooked – the ability to identify and alert to the impending failure of a vehicle component. This approach of “static” preventative scheduling for enterprise fleet vehicle maintenance typically results in increased costs from over repair and safety issues due to unplanned failures and on-the-road breakdowns.

Certain predictive fleet management software can integrate with a vehicles telematics system and analyze both real-time and historical data to immediately notify of any faults or issues that could cause a breakdown if not addressed. This approach leads to an increase in fleet productivity and profitability due to less downtime, a decrease in emergency repair costs, and a reduction in overall maintenance expenses by focusing on priority vehicles.

Reducing Enterprise Fleet Full Maintenance Costs

Keeping a fleet of company vehicles running is a major expense for any organization, and particularly challenging with maintenance costs rising as vehicles get older.  According to the American Transport Research Institute, the average repair and maintenance cost for vehicle fleets  rose by 18.2% from 2020 to 2021 alone. And with recent inflation putting additional strain on operating costs, fleet managers are looking for ways to cut maintenance expenses wherever they can in 2023.

Information can be a fleet manager’s most powerful tool when it comes to implementing strategies to lower expenses. Businesses are turning to connected enterprise fleet management systems and utilizing AI data analysis to make smarter strategic decisions and achieve significantly lower maintenance costs.

Why You Need Fleet Maintenance Software For Enterprise Fleets

Telematics software is increasingly being used by fleet managers to monitor a vehicle’s mechanical status and improve operational efficiency, but the potential exists for data to be utilized fully and its benefits maximized. To do so ensures opportunities for major gains in efficiency are readily identified, and potential problems that could impact operational disruptions are avoided.

To remain competitive, businesses with fleets are turning to AI-based enterprise fleet management maintenance software to analyze collected data and predict future trends. When applied to enterprise fleet maintenance and repair, this has a significant impact on preventing downtime. Predictive analysis allows for maintenance issues to be addressed before they become breakdowns. The vehicle data can also be analyzed to identify ways to optimize and improve vehicle running costs and maintenance.

The traditional method of reactive-based vehicle maintenance and repair lacks real-time performance insight and results in maintenance that is often unnecessary, or worse, performed after a total vehicle failure. This lack of predictability creates endless operational challenges for fleet managers.

Benefits Of Enterprise Fleet Maintenance Software

Removes The Risk Of Human Error

Enterprise fleet maintenance software can eliminate the risk of human error in data recording and analysis. AI can easily handle the tedious and time-consuming task of analyzing large amounts of data that would be difficult for busy fleet managers to do alone. This allows organizations to make more accurate and informed decisions, reducing the likelihood of errors and their associated consequences.

Reduce Vehicle Downtime

Fleet companies already using telematics data can easily transition from a proactive maintenance program to a smarter, dynamic maintenance plan. This shortens vehicle maintenance downtime with early notification of potential issues so enterprise fleet management professionals can prioritize vehicle maintenance and repairs and even pre order parts to eliminate waiting time. 

For example, the current maintenance schedule for a logistic company has a routine checkup for Vehicle A next week and Vehicle B in two weeks. By coupling the fleet telematics provider with a predictive software like Pitstop, the manager sees Vehicle B has a critical alert showing a potential failure in nine days, while Vehicle A is healthy. The manager is now able to quickly and confidently make the decision to switch the schedule in order to prioritize Vehicle B while leaving Vehicle A to run the route, keeping the fleet running smoothly.

Get An Instant Snapshot Of Fleet Health

Unclear data holds no value. Fleet maintenance software is designed to make information simple and easy to process fleet health can be monitored in real-time and issues caught early. Features such as instant alerts give real-time updates about potentially serious issues, empowering managers to make informed, data-driven decisions, and develop strategies with confidence. 

Cut Maintenance Costs

Efficiency and resource optimization are key goals for enterprise fleet managers. When a vehicle breakdown occurs, it can disrupt operational systems and result in significant maintenance costs for recovering a vehicle and diagnosing the fault. With the growing complexity of vehicles, particularly as more electric vehicles enter the fleet, it is crucial to identify issues before they cause a vehicle to fail. This reduces enterprise fleet maintenance and repair costs and minimizes fleet vehicle downtime. 

User-Friendly Front End

Effective data analysis requires a user-friendly enterprise fleet full maintenance platform that presents data in a clear and easily understandable format. Visual simplicity and user-friendly dashboards allow fleet managers to focus on the most crucial information and cloud accessibility ensures that managers can easily monitor and respond to potential issues from any location while avoiding data overload. 

How Pitstop Can Help You With Enterprise Fleet Maintenance 

Pitstop is a predictive maintenance analytics platform that seamlessly integrates with fleet telematics systems to collect and analyze vehicle data using sophisticated AI algorithms. With Pitstop’s powerful, predictive insights, fleets can reduce downtime, better plan vehicle maintenance, improve efficiency, and significantly cut maintenance and repair costs. 

Pitstop has built a platform that delivers actionable insights through a powerful combination of telematics data analysis, cloud-based proprietary algorithms, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. This directly assists fleet managers by helping them understand and organize all of their enterprise fleet management maintenance needs, allowing them to avoid repair costs and avoid disruption to fleet operations, as well as a better understanding of component-level failures. To learn more, schedule a demo with Pitstop today.