As the global shift towards sustainability and electric vehicles (EV) use continues to gain momentum, managing a fleet of electric vehicles will be a complex challenge for many operators.
With rapidly evolving technology, increasing public expectations, and disruptions in supply chains affecting availability – now is the time to start preparing your operations team for the future.
In this blog post we’ll discuss how you get ahead of the curve on electric vehicles needs by looking at ways to optimize local maintenance concerns, investing in alternatives with longer range capabilities and creating resiliency through diversified suppliers.
Table of Contents
- 1 Challenges of Electric Vehicle Fleet Management
- 2 8 Benefits of Electric Vehicle Fleet Management
- 3 How to Prepare Your Business for an Electric Fleet Transition
- 3.1 Research and Choose Charging Solutions
- 3.2 Plan for the Future Maintenance Needs of Your Fleet
- 3.3 Consider Carbon Neutrality Strategies for Your Business
- 3.4 Learn About the Different Types of Electric Trucks Available
- 3.5 Set up an Electric Truck Trail Program
- 3.6 Research Carbon Neutrality Certification Benefits
- 4 Step In the Right Direction
Challenges of Electric Vehicle Fleet Management
Lack of Charging Infrastructure
Commercial fleets currently face a challenge with their charging infrastructure for electric vehicles. They lack the necessary infrastructure to accommodate multiple EVs, resulting in longer charging times and potential delays in deliveries. Fleet managers must carefully plan routes to account for charging time and ensure efficient operations.
Additionally, drivers may struggle to find available charging points and may have to wait in line due to a limited number of stations. These issues highlight the need for a comprehensive solution to address the charging needs of commercial fleets.
commercial fleets must confront the limited driving range of electric vehicles (EVs). Currently available models travel between about 200-300 miles per charge. This restriction can hinder businesses that rely on long-distance driving.
Additionally, commercial fleets may face difficulty finding electric vehicles that are larger or cater to specific needs, as these options are not yet widely available.
Lack of Training Programs
Even the most experienced drivers require training before operating electric vehicles. Transitioning to more EVs means a larger investment in time and money for training and onboarding, which is challenging if you don’t have the resources.
To get the most out of the EVs, you need to hire qualified technicians to train your drivers. You’ll also have to account for the adjustment period as the new routines like charging during journeys will impact the driver’s performance in the deliveries or journeys made using EVs.
Difficulty in Managing Electricity Consumption
With money saved on fuel comes additional utility rates due to the EV switch fleets will have to deal with increased electricity consumption.
Lack of Incentives and Support Programs to Switch to an Electric Fleet
Since EVs have yet to be widely used commercially and personally, your business is unlikely to easily find support programs that help you transition to an electric fleet.
You’ll be depending on the EV vehicle provider and will need to do research on the most efficient way of utilizing the vehicles. Partner companies like insurance providers also have yet to incorporate incentives like discounted premiums with an EV investment.
8 Benefits of Electric Vehicle Fleet Management
Despite the challenges and limitations, there are many benefits when you switch to an electric fleet:
Reduced Fuel Costs
Fuel is one of the biggest costs for fleets. And reap the fuel savings after transitioning to electric vehicles based on your charging costs and usage. A fleet management software helps automate the fuel you use and see how much you spend per mile.
Improved Fleet Performance
Electric vehicles have an advantage with instant torque compared to combustion engines. This is a huge advantage especially for hauling freight or passengers, as it enables larger trucks to speed up quicker – making merging easier.
Greater Energy Efficiency
Because your vehicles accelerate faster, drivers end up using less force to initiate speeds. This results in increased efficiency of power that results in bigger savings for your charging costs.
Lower Engine Maintenance Costs
Compared to your current vehicles, electric fleet vehicles don’t require as many parts and regular check ups for its engine’s maintenance. Your company ends up cutting back on maintenance spend compared to your current vehicles.
Increased Fleet Efficiency
Since your fleet covers more ground at higher speeds, as a result your vehicles work more efficiently. EVs are also likely to depart fully charged, so your drivers don’t have to account for refueling stops if the charge lasts long enough for the designated journey.
Drivers cut their trips shorter with EVs since they don’t have to account for gas pit stops. They focus on the task at hand and maybe even use the time to do more trips.
Cost Savings on Electric Vehicle Upgrades
EVs employ the latest technologies and features, so you don’t have to worry about upgrading them soon after your investment.
Ability to Plan For Charging Infrastructure Needs
You don’t have to upgrade all your vehicles to EVs at the same time. Start with one to see how it works and weigh the pros and cons. This gives you time to plan and asses your needs as a fleet.
How to Prepare Your Business for an Electric Fleet Transition
Now that you’ve considered the pros and cons of EVs, here’s what you do to prepare for the transition.
Research and Choose Charging Solutions
Review how much your company will save in terms of fuel, compare that with utility cost increases, and then account for the energy requirements in terms of a facility charging infrastructure. See what charging solutions will help you save and make the most out of your EVs investment.
Plan for the Future Maintenance Needs of Your Fleet
Including more EVs will mean new parts to maintain. While you’ll be dealing with less components, it’s still crucial to plan for the change and educate vehicle operators about EV operations, maintenance schedules, and charging. Account for maintenance as well in terms of your distances traveled, route schedules, and costs.
Consider Carbon Neutrality Strategies for Your Business
EVs will bring any fleets with carbon neutrality goals closer to the finish line. If this isn’t on the horizon, then consider adding it as many companies like Ikea, BMW, and DHL are boldly declaring they’ll achieve carbon neutrality as an essential component of their electric vehicle fleet management operations. Based on these goals, your fleet could partner in getting closer to carbon neutrality, which begins with going electric.
Learn About the Different Types of Electric Trucks Available
Explore the electric trucks you incorporate as part of your fleet. Apart from the model, make detailed plans on how these EVs will go into your current workflow.
Set up an Electric Truck Trail Program
Apart from transition plans, explore the routes you maximize with electric trucks using a trail program. Base the routes on the distance a fully charged truck covers and minimizes the stops in charging stations.
Research Carbon Neutrality Certification Benefits
While attaining carbon neutral certification will be rigorous and a long process, many stakeholders and customers are demanding this given the current environmental situation.
Research the benefits carbon neutral certification gives for your fleet, especially in terms of strengthened brand reputation, transparency, stakeholder requirements, and positioning your business as an industry leader.
Step In the Right Direction
Thinking ahead and preparing for the shift to electric vehicles is critical as consumers continue to drive progress in this space. Mitigating the challenges of managing a fleet of EVs by proactively addressing local maintenance, utilizing longer range options, and diversifying supply sources will set your organization on the path towards transport sustainability success.
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