Saving money on fuel and operating costs is a fantastic achievement. We have been privileged to support a number of operators to have wiped in excess of $100,000 off their annual costs – some of these are part of national advertising campaigns funded by EECA at the moment.

But what of the other 98% of the industry – why are you not getting those savings too?

The Manager’s answers
• It will take too much effort and we’re not sure the savings will be worth it
• We don’t have time for that kind of thing
• Our trucks are speed limited, so we’ve got speed covered – that’s the main thing
• It’s on the job plan, and we’ll get to it later this year
• We’ve got a big tender / customer project just come up that is taking all our time
• We are finding it hard enough to get drivers, without ****ing them off trying to tell them how to drive their truck

The Driver’s answers
• Fuel savings? I think I’m better than most.
• With the crazy things they waste money on in this company, there is no point me busting a gut trying to save them a few cents on fuel
• By the time I’ve made my log book fit the work they gave me, I don’t have time for much else
• They did have a bit of a thing about speed and fuel last year, and it was good for a while there, but they lost interest so we just put the boot back up it and its gone back to how we used to be.

The perception of those In Charge
• Fuel savings are easy.
• There are a lot of manuals available, the transport companies just need to follow them
• Isn’t it obvious that trucks should never be left idling already?
• Transport Operators must need their heads read – why are they whining about RUC when they could make all that money back in fuel savings?

The truth
• Savings between $5,000 and $10,000 per truck per year are possible
• They don’t “just happen” but it isn’t a new full time job either
• Sometimes operational stuff does have to take priority, but it is not an excuse to completely give up on the project
• To achieve fuel savings, you first need to admit that there are some things in your business that could be working better
• Saving money on fuel is not the main prize, it is just a measurable side effect of getting the managers and drivers working really well together
• Most drivers want to work within the law
• Most drivers want to be able to prove that they are the best driver in the fleet, and will work hard to achieve that status
• Drivers who work for fleets that have a focus on fuel efficiency seem to enjoy their work more, are more likely to stay at their job, and try to encourage their mates to work their too.

Every fleet that we have worked with that has saved money on fuel, has achieved it in their own way, but they all have a few things in common. They:
1. have admitted to themselves that their company doesn’t always run like clockwork
2. are willing to have another crack at the way they work with their drivers
3. make their decisions based on facts
4. use each month’s data and action plan, as a new opportunity to make a difference

What is holding you back? Join the discussion on our facebook page.

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