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2 Steps to Reduce Fleet Maintenance Costs

Posted by Jim Buell on March 28, 2016 - 1:03 PM

Imagine you’re taking a cross country automobile trip.  Like many of us you’ll likely make use of a Garmin or some other mapping device.  Now pretend the mapping device displays where you are and the destination, but blocks out the middle portion of the trip.  Is this helpful to your decision of what route you’re going to take?

As silly as the above sounds this happens every day in the fleet management/maintenance arena.  We have some data, but not enough information to give us a clear enough picture to help us determine the best path forward.  Yet there are two simple steps you can take to rectify this and make better decisions.

1.       Use the “power of per”.  You can connect the lines between data and meaningful information by the power of per.  That simply means dividing the number by some constant for easy comparison.  The examples are all around you: Repair orders completed per tech, miles run per breakdown.  Dividing data by a constant allows you to use the step below (find a comparison) to easily determine the route you can take to improvement.

2.       Find a comparison.  Once you are using the power of per to give you a constant, you can now easily compare operations to make quick, informed decisions.  Is there seasonality in your information (e.g., weather related repairs)?  You’ll need to compare yourself year-over-year to realize the correct picture.  Do you have multiple shops working on the same type of assets?  You can compare one shop to another (and not have to build an entire year’s worth of data).  Do you belong to an association of similar companies that could collect this data?  If so you can benchmark your performance against the industry and confirm where you’re best in class and where you can improve.

Using the power of per and finding a comparison can help you fill in your department’s roadmap to success.  Then you can begin to make rapid, sound decisions that create great results for your organization.

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