Optimizing your fleet's composition.
Get ready for the electric-powered autonomic future!

In any business, those who can predict the future and adapt to coming changes have the least downtime and waste, which greatly impacts the bottom line. Conversely, companies unprepared or resistant to transformation have had huge setbacks or even gone out of business throughout history. When we consider the fleet management industry, this is no different. Is now the time to leap into electric vehicles? What about autonomous cars? Fleet management data analytics can help you decide if and how to integrate EVs and AVs.

As electric vehicles are becoming more popular, fleet managers are increasingly wary of their impact on fleet composition, infrastructure, and ultimately—spending and revenue. Coupled with the rise of autonomous vehicle technology lately, the future of the fleet management industry has probably never looked so different. While some developments within the EV and AV area still need some time to mature, others are already at our fingertips, ready to be embraced. But using them to a competitive advantage calls for a strategic approach based on data.

Staying current in fleet management

Electric vehicles are top of the chart for many fleet managers. They are growing in popularity all over the globe. In 2020, more than 10 million electric cars were traversing the world’s roads. One year later, their sales skyrocketed by 26%, topping 6.4 million units sold. Today’s businesses operating vehicles commit to EVs to keep up with this consumer trend.

EVs may seem like an obvious choice, considering their potential to decrease emissions and lower fuel and maintenance costs. Going electric isn’t just as easy as flipping a switch, though. As more and more regulations promoting electric mobility come into force, embracing sustainable mobility seems like a non-negotiable rather than an option. But planning and implementation are always the hard part. The required infrastructure may seem overwhelming, but given enough time and effort, it’s possible to build an efficient strategy that will bring sizeable revenue in the long term.

Electric Light Commercial Vehicle Registration by Region 2015-2020

Source: IEA, Electric LCVs registrations by region, 2015-2020, IEA, Paris
https://www.iea.org/data-and-statistics/charts/electric-lcvs-registrations-by-region-2015-2020

One of the top challenges faced by fleet managers is ensuring optimized charging infrastructure to fulfill the needs of EVs in their fleets. Buying the vehicles is a minor issue compared to what follows the purchase.
Electric cars require charging outlets, and the time of charging is much greater than the amount of time needed to refuel a vehicle with a gasoline or diesel engine. The driver can’t pull up to a refueling station and fill up the car in a few minutes, and a technician can’t drive around a lot with a fuel truck topping off vehicles for the next day. To effectively manage EV fleet activity, charging stations must be built, and with the increase of charge times, charging would almost need to be part of regular maintenance.
Regarding maintenance, technicians should have less work, lowering the overhead cost per vehicle, with less moving and serviceable parts on an electric car, right? But with battery replacement concerns, the cost of infrastructure, and the hassle of charging times, companies might ask themselves, is it worth it?

Charging toward autonomous fleet composition

Another question that remains unresolved concerns autonomous cars. While we may still be some time away from fully autonomous self-driving vehicles, or level 5 as the Society of Automotive Engineers call it, being integrated into the fleet, they will be here one day. In the not too distant future, the fleet management team will need to address that. Currently, level 4 vehicles are being tested and will likely grow in popularity in the coming years. For the time being, these vehicles need to have a driver available to handle some tasks, like backing into a loading dock and finding parking spots. But with considerably less time required to have hands on the wheel, the integration of the “mind off” vehicles might change the makeup of the fleet of drivers drastically.
Delivery vehicles might be the new cubicle for jobs that can be done with breaks in between. For example, customer service representatives and entry-level salespeople might be better suited for the business to double as delivery personnel. As they are traveling between locations, they can handle phone calls and emails, and when the need arises, take over as temporary delivery specialists. In many industries, the sales forces visit the clients and customers, so if they can do most of their work on the way, production loss on that end will be very minimal. Such an approach could even increase productivity, depending on the amount of time the sales force spends on the road. While the above vision may seem far-fetched to many, it wouldn’t be the first case of the unimaginable coming true if it materializes.

The driving force behind electrifying fleets

Thankfully, technology is improving everywhere, not just in vehicles. Optimizing the makeup of your fleet is about making well-informed decisions about which vehicles can be transitioned from combustion engines, whether diesel or gasoline, to another energy source. Data-driven fleet optimization analytics systems assist operators in many facets of fleet management, including tracking information that will help enhance fleet composition in the future.

AI-driven predictive platforms process individual drivers’ mobility patterns to calculate accurate eco and EV transition profiles. First, they integrate with trip detection software installed on mobile devices, or other solutions like OBD dongles, blackboxes, or car data platforms, and pull information about a particular driver, such as typical routes they drive, duration of trips, where they stop, duration of stops, driving style, and availability of charging infrastructure. Next, they develop an objective assessment of a driver’s suitability to move to an electric car based on all these factors.
Using data-driven fleet management, managers can review the information provided and decide what would be the ideal fleet makeup from now on. Then, they can add a combination of full-electric, plugin-hybrid, and hybrid vehicles to balance out their fleet’s needs. Taking the guesswork (or the tons of labor required to analyze the information manually) out of fleet management analytics will simplify and enhance decision-making, helping fleet managers become more efficient with new vehicle choices. And more accurate, data-backed decisions will take away, or at least reduce, the fear of having a fleet that cannot cover all the business’s needs and a fleet that is wasting fuel and money.

AskLee Mobile App

An example of a mobile app using a predictive model that indicates the potential to switch to electric vehicles for a given profile. 

Source: AskLee EV-Assessment Mobile App 
https://asklee.be/ 

Optimizing fleet composition for the future

Fleet managers have plenty to keep them busy with all these innovations coming. A change will be essential to excel in the future, and for many, it will be necessary to survive. That doesn’t necessarily call for an abrupt and dramatic revolution. However, increasing the number of electric vehicles and preparing for a semi-autonomous fleet should be discussed in meetings sooner rather than later. Some companies have already started optimizing their fleets by adding EVs to get a head start. Many more are planning to follow soon. Autonomous vehicles are still in development, but plans and policies should be in place on handling them before they get here.

Key Takeaway: Data-driven fleet management analytics and fleet optimization analytics empower fleet managers to better evaluate risks and opportunities related to disruptions like EVs and AVs. But, likely, their jobs won’t become easier. On the contrary, to efficiently manage the fleets of the future, operators will need to upskill on breakthrough technologies, like data analytics, artificial intelligence, and mobile telematics, and understand how to use them. As technology-induced shifts are underway, making sure your business and team are ready to harness them is now more important than ever. Be proactive and get on board with fleet optimization technology now!

 

 

BOOK YOUR DEMO NOW!

Related Insights

Motion S Art 02d 100 300x157
Mobility Analytics

Data Science vs. Data Analytics: Definitions, Differences, and Applications

“Information is the oil of the 21st century, and analytics is the combustion engine.”

These simple words, spoken by Peter Sondergaard, the former executive vice president and member of Gartner’s operating committee, perfectly illustrate the significance of data and its processing in the contemporary world. In this article, we will investigate how it impacts the automotive industry in particular and elucidate the difference between data science and data analytics to settle it once and for all.
Read More

Karsten Wurth ImeGmbUNarA Unsplash 300x188
Connected Insurance

Free Webinar: A new era in fleet management powered by connected car data and data-driven fleet optimization

Are you ready for a new era of device-free, data-driven Fleet Solutions?
Join our free webinar to look at the future of #fleetOptimization powered by Connected Car Data. Together with our partner High Mobility, we’ll be looking at the new possibilities that open up thanks to Connected Car Data and how these can empower innovation across the fleet industry. We’ll cover: “What use cases do OEM-connected car data platforms enable?”, “What are its current limitations, and how to tackle them?”, “What to expect of the midterm future?”, and “How connected car data can be leveraged to innovate in the fleet industry?”, among others. Register now and join the discussion.
Read More

Collage 300x200
Mobility Analytics

A Short Story of How Data Has Become a Cornerstone of Mobility Transformation 

Picture yourself in 19th-century Britain. You’re doomed to the ordeal of commuting in a horse-drawn-wheeled carriage, accompanied by a dozen of sweaty co-passengers whose heads bob religiously to the rhythm of the road bumps and cracks.

Then, one day, rail reaches your town, allowing you to venture out hundreds of miles away in an amazingly short time. The steam locomotive’s design is revolutionary, making the impossible real and massively enhancing travel comfort. This innovation feels like a breakthrough in the history of mobility, not only for you. … Read More

Alex Chernenko InqfXtFueYQ Unsplash 169x300
Connected Insurance

Choosing the best data collection solution to build your connected insurance: key things to consider

Traditionally, connected insurance uses data from IoT telematics devices to tailor premiums based on driving insights. But today, new ways of building effective connected insurance programs have come into play, like driver safety rewards programs, sustainability and green benefit programs, personalized recommendations, or cross-selling insurance products. To tap into these, insurers must deploy appropriate data collection technology. But what is ‘appropriate’ in this context? … Read More

Data science outsourcing
Mobility Analytics

Data Science Outsourcing: The Missing Piece of a Winning Data-Driven Culture

The past two years’ events have re-wired business stakeholders across industries to become data-driven. In 2022, nobody questions the value of data in nurturing business growth and speed. Instead, companies are striving to secure the best data science resources that will allow them to establish a consistent, repeatable framework for data-driven decisions. Data science outsourcing might be just what they need to accomplish that goal. … Read More

BOOK YOUR DEMO NOW

We'd love to show you the power of our data-driven products.
Book your personal demonstration now!

FREE WEBINAR 

OCT 11, 2 PM CET

GET YOUR FREE API TRIAL NOW!

Test drive our API Suite for 30 days!
Tell us a bit about yourself, and we’ll get in touch with you in no time.