Fuel tracking

Akin: Best practices for fuel tracking

Jan. 25, 2024
Fuel tracking can help fleets be more efficient and reduce their maintenance costs.

In the evolving landscape of fleet management, a key to success is to master fuel tracking. The hassle of managing fuel receipts and the need for a strategic approach has never been more evident. 

How does fuel tracking work? 

Fuel tracking involves a multifaceted approach encompassing fuel prices, fuel consumption, vehicle fuel levels, and in-depth analysis of fuel usage data. Real-time fuel monitoring adds extreme precision, allowing fleet managers to access fuel usage and the associated costs with a few clicks. These advancements empower fleet managers to make informed, data-driven decisions.

Implement a fuel tracking system

Utilizing GPS data and fuel sensors in a fuel card management system gives fleet managers more visibility and control over fuel economy. Consider your fuel tracking solution as a personal assistant, ensuring maximum efficiency from every drop of diesel, or it will be reported. Outliers and possible instances of fraud will automatically surface through reporting, dashboards, and real-time alerts to fleet operators.

Attacking fuel theft

From fuel skimming to odometer tampering, unauthorized purchases, or unacceptable fuel consumption, there are many avenues to lose revenue, which is why every potential instance should be investigated. Fleets should have predefined procedures for dealing with fuel theft among drivers. Consequently, fuel theft compliance efforts and repercussions should be incorporated into a driver's initial training prior to hitting the road.

See also: Increase fuel efficiency using a fleet management system, electrified fleet products

Top 3 things to watch out for in fuel efficiency  

  1. Risky driving: Driving at excessive speeds leads to heavy braking and poor fuel economy. Maintaining speeds within the local limits enhances safety and contributes to long-term cost savings, including vehicle maintenance and lower insurance rates.
  2. Poor routing: Routing should be real-time and include terrain variations, current traffic conditions, rough roads, or a shorter route. Failing to route drivers properly will increase fuel consumption, taking a cut out of profitability each time. Poor routing can be fully automated with the right partner. Choose wisely.
  3. Idling: Excessive idling harms the environment and wastes money. It also adds extra wear to the vehicle’s engine. Instances of excessive idling can be avoided with a simple telematics rule in place. For example, operators can be notified via SMS anytime a vehicle in their fleet idles longer than 10 minutes. 

Reducing maintenance costs with fuel tracking

A robust fuel tracking system goes beyond monitoring consumption; it prevents greater maintenance costs. By detecting changes in fuel efficiency, fleet managers can identify underlying engine problems early on. This proactive approach allows for timely scheduling of routine vehicle maintenance, reducing the likelihood of unexpected breakdowns and associated costs while on the road.

Promoting driver accountability

Driver accountability is also a crucial aspect of fuel efficiency improvement. Establishing clear expectations and guidelines for drivers to demonstrate good fuel efficiency fosters a culture of responsibility. Regular feedback mechanisms reinforce positive driving habits while contributing to improved overall fleet performance and happier drivers.

Most experts would agree that fuel tracking is a cornerstone to a fleet's long-term success, from addressing the challenges of fuel theft to unlocking refined fuel efficiency, reducing maintenance costs, and streamlining bookkeeping. The benefits of a comprehensive fuel tracking strategy are clear. Implementing best practices, including fuel efficiency analysis, driver behavior monitoring, maintenance tracking, detailed fuel cost tracking, and the promotion of driver accountability, will make fleets stronger and more profitable.

Rush is an experienced veteran in the fleet industry, with over 22+ years of experience in fleet management. Before joining RoadFlex, Rush served as the SVP of sales for Solera, overseeing fleet sales and business development in North America. Before Solera, Rush worked with well-known brands in the industry, such as Rand McNally, Lytx, FourKites, and Syntech Systems Fuel Master. Rush has a strong background in fleet and fuel management and customer success. 

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