As a small business owner, you may eventually find that it’s time to hire drivers for your business. However, in order to keep costs low while still compensating drivers fairly, it’s wise to do some research into the potential expenses that can come with hiring drivers and maintaining a fleet.
One of the biggest mistakes new business owners make is only taking into account the purchase price of a fleet vehicle. In order to save money, you’ll need to consider the total vehicle cost per mile driven. This may sound like an unusual method, but tracking total purchase and maintenance expenses over miles driven will help you track which vehicles are most efficient. As you gather data on your fleet, you’ll also need to create a budget for vehicle repairs and routine maintenance. While it may be tempting to skip oil changes and other routine procedures, this often shortens the vehicle’s life dramatically. Ideally, you want to be able to retire and resell fleet vehicles at set intervals of age or mileage. This will help ensure you get some money back to reinvest in newer fleet vehicles.
Of course, budgeting for a fleet doesn’t only involve maintaining vehicles–you also will need to train drivers. Good, reliable vehicle employees are often difficult to come by. Some of this is because training programs for licenses (like a CDL) are often time-consuming and expensive. By offering driver training to new hires, you can ensure that they are trained in a way that will benefit your business. You may want to offer in-person lectures or video training. And since a CDL will often require drivers to have hands-on experience driving with a trainer, you may need to include this as well. It may be tempting to outsource driver training to a program of unknown quality, but this may lead to issues. Over 94% percent of collisions are a result of poor decision making. By doing thorough training with your drivers, you can dramatically reduce collision risk.
Keeping Your Drivers
In many industries, it is notoriously hard to keep good drivers working for your company. And while it may not seem to matter at first, you’ll need to consider the fact that if a driver leaves, you will need to pay to rehire, and often retrain, another one. Including incentives, like raises, bonuses and positive as well as constructive feedback, can help your drivers feel seen and appreciated. Doing everything you can to help your drivers feel appreciated and valued will help you to make sure that they stay with your company for the long haul.
While it may take a lot of initial planning, setting up a fleet has the potential to greatly expand your business. Find decent vehicles and hire reliable drivers, and your fleet will be well on its way.
Here’s another article you might like: How to Cut Down on Costs Without Sacrificing Your Business