Saving on Costs with Forklift Fleet Management

Saving on Costs with Forklift Fleet Management

Improving Efficiency and Cost in Forklift Fleet Management

When it comes to forklift fleet management and a hunt for greater efficiency, issues like aging equipment, equipment abuse, and underutilizing assets are often considered part of unanticipated maintenance costs. But, in a business dealing with heavy machinery, do breakdowns and aged out equipment really count as unanticipated?

A key way to improve efficiency within the fleet is to be proactive in regards to anticipating and being prepared to prevent inadvertent costs. Thinking or suspecting a problem won’t cut it – fleet managers need to be prepared and show forward thinking in regards to a long-term picture and not short, immediate fixes.

This can be tricky because the shipping industry is built upon the concept of moving the product as quickly as possible. “Downtime” is a dirty word and is often dealt with by having money thrown at it. This reactive tendency is one of the highest contributors to cost.

Ignore Assumptions, Take Action

Don’t base how your warehouse operates on a business model – base your operation upon the actuality of your business. Some warehouses have been known only to use up to 80% of their trucks at a given time, leaving them with approximately $30,000 per unused truck in costs.

Another easy way to be proactive is to monitor and be aware of possible hazards within the warehouse. If there’s a ramp that is causing premature tire wear, instead of quickly replacing the tire – an immediate fix –fix the ramp so that this will no longer be a problem moving forward. Abuse can make up 30% of a fleet’s cost, and it doesn’t have to be egregious to be problematic. Abuse can include a bad ramp, not coming to a complete stop before shifting gears, or cracks in the floor.

If Possible, Avoid Overlap

Shift overlap is a necessary evil of the shipping industry, but it comes with a potentially unseen cost. If a warehouse operates with two shifts of 30 workers and has an overlap of 15 (equating to 45 on site at a time), that means 45 trucks must be in use. Cutting that overlap can result in an eventual cost savings of 10-40% over the year.

Shipping and fleet management is a fast-paced business that requires precision and a smooth operation. Being willing to plan and slow down decision making once in awhile can actually be the most efficient way to cut costs and increase profits.

We're Here To Help

Our customers are at the center of everything we do. HCO knows that many of you are navigating unprecedented challenges and we’re here to help.

The current economic environment has created stress on many of the core industries that this country relies on to thrive.
- Corporate liquidity is at a premium and the management of your balance sheet is critical.
- Bank and vendor leasing for equipment is tightening as corporate credit ratings are in flux and lenders are focused on securing their own capital.

HCO is leading through this disruption with customized forklift fleet programs that allow companies to 1) replace fleet assets and 2) service those assets without relying on banks or vendors for leasing. Our managed service programs allow companies to secure assets and service programs with no upfront capital, and no end of term lease obligations. We are reinventing the way companies access equipment and service. Please reach out to discuss whether this would be valuable to your company.

As we execute our business continuity plan, we will rely on the guidance from the Center for Disease Control, federal, state, and local governments to guide our decisions to keep our employees and our customers’ employees safe. We are committed to continuing to provide clients with our valuable services.

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