Look outside for a more systematic approach to maintenance

The service maintenance market is undergoing enormous change. Dick Hyatt, president and CEO of Decisiv, speaking at the recent NationaLease Annual Meeting, said fleet expectations have changed and fleets are now expecting more from maintenance providers.

Technology is playing a role in this shift by allowing a more systematic approach to maintenance and managed care.

The key drivers behind the growth of managed maintenance are:

  • Vehicle complexity
  • Technician shortage
  • Increased technician training requirement
  • Expanded and more stringent government regulations
  • Expected increase in the cost of capital over the next 5 years

If you are considering outsourcing maintenance and repair to a third party, look for the following:

  • Consistent service across the service network
  • Consistent labor rates across North America
  • Consistent parts markups across North America
  • Centralized billing
  • Call center management
  • KPI dashboards
  • Telematics unit and monitoring for all vehicles
  • Real time visibility and collaboration

You want to select someone who understands service relationship management, which includes:

  • Connectivity — This is the ability to have data flow seamlessly back and forth between the service provider and the fleet.
  • Communication — What you want is in-context communication at the point of service
  • Consistency — Make sure the service as well as reporting is consistent across their service network.

Maintenance and repair are big costs to your fleet. According to the American Transportation Research Institute, maintenance and repair costs your fleet 16 cents a mile and represents 10% of your costs.

Make sure you carefully evaluate potential outside service providers because the right one can help you keep those costs in line.

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