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Updated 24 Jul 2017


3 Little known ways you can reduce petrol usage and cost

Gain a competitive advantage by implementing these three little known ways to reduce your petrol usage and expenses. 


Nicole Crampton, 09 July 2017  Share  0 comments  Print


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All the answers to your unique business lifestage questions

When you’re just starting out, you need to use every method you can to keep costs down and profits up. “Petrol expenses account for around a third of a fleet’s operating costs and as such it is a major consideration for many operations,” said Ron Katz, senior vice-president, North American Sales at Chevin Fleet Solutions. Use these three little-known alternatives to stay ahead of your competition and get your transport business off the ground.

Related: Reducing fleet card misuse


KEY LEARNING

“There is a lot your drivers can do to contribute to lowering your overall fuel costs – plus, the behaviours that encourage fuel conservation are the same behaviours that promote increased safety and sustainability,” says Andy Hall, assistant manager, Fuel & GMS, ARI. “It is a win-win all around.”


Here are three ways that you can reduce the petrol usage and cost in your start-up transport and logistics business:

1. Select the right sized vehicle for your needs

Petrol -transportHaving the right sized vehicle for your start-up transport and logistics business is critical when trying to reduce fuel costs. Determine which vehicles will best suit your needs. This reduces the likelihood of your business having vehicles that are too small or too big for operation.

“Fleets can right size their vehicles and in turn, reduce fuel spend as result of replacing assets with vehicles that have smaller engines, better fuel economy, and lower gross vehicle weight. Provided that the new vehicle continues to meet the business operational needs,” said Vincent Raynor, director, strategic consulting of Element Fleet Management.

“A fleet vehicle must first functionally serve a purpose. Among vehicles that fit job needs, look to reduce size and weight, and consider more fuel-efficient vehicles and even alternative fuel models,” John Wuich, VP of consulting services for Donlen Corporation, an American fleet leasing and management business.

2. Considering alternative fuel options

Incorporating alternative fuel vehicles into your fleet can help you reduce your fuel expenses in the long-term. “Many fleets have moved toward varied fuel types including hybrid, electric, and compressed natural gas. Although in some cases technology has not kept pace with demand, we do see a slowly increasing trend in investment in alternative fuel technologies in response to demand,” says Raynor.

Alternative fuel vehicles could also help you to gain business from customers looking for greener transportation partners.

Related: Is your business prepared for fuel price increases in Africa?

3. Offer fleet buy-in

When considering all the elements involved in reducing fuel spend, having buy-in from your team, from stakeholders to fleet drivers, can be a way to reduce expenses. With a stake in the business drivers will adhere to company policies and good driving habits, which will in itself will reduce fuel consumption.

“It always helps to have a policy in place that is supported by management and adhered to by drivers,” says Wuich.

Using this strategy you can also improve driver loyalty, which will increase how long each driver stays with your transport and logistics start-up business. This will make in-depth training a worthwhile investment.

“Training courses can help to educate drivers on habits that will aid in the reduction of fuel usage. These courses are often available online and can be completed during downtime that will not interfere with daily work schedules,” says Mark Donahue, manager, fleet analytics and corporate communications, EMKAY Inc. 


TRY THIS

  • Having the right-sized vehicle for your start-up transport and logistics business is critical when trying to reduce fuel costs.  
  • Incorporating alternative fuel vehicles into your fleet can help you reduce your fuel expenses in the long-term.
  • Offer your team buy-in to your start-up. With a stake in the business drivers will more likely adhere to company policies and good driving habits, which will in itself reduce fuel consumption.
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About the author


Nicole Crampton


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