There are a lot of moving parts (quite literally) involved with running your own logistics, and especially your own fleet. After all, you have actual trucks on the road, and that means you can’t be hands-off in how you manage them, you need to know where they are, when they’re expected, what your drivers need, and how to maintain your suite of trucks. After all, without good logistics, no company would run, internally or as part of the wider supply chain.
When it comes to fleet management, your operational goals are quite easy to understand. Keep the fleet on the road, keep the drivers happy, well-paid, operating safely, and reliably, maintain your trucks, and get from A to B reliably.
But what about the mistakes you should avoid? After all, if something goes wrong on the road it can go very wrong, and one missed delivery or reputational knock can quickly evolve into a real problem. With that in mind, let’s consider three common logistical mistakes and how to avoid them:
Unhelpful Maintenance Scheduling
Maintenance is one thing, but if you’ve found that you can’t schedule it correctly without causing ample issues with your logistical reliability, then it’s not serving the purpose it should, or could at least be handled better. With software that helps you take off certain drivers and trucks for maintenance, a reliable mechanics service able to come in and resolve issues comprehensively but also in good time, and with the ability to schedule or postpone backup or replacement deliveries, you can ensure your overarching logistical plan isn’t too affected by the inevitability of maintenance requirements.
Inefficient Inventory Management
Without inventory management, a driver might arrive at your loading bay and not have the immediate freight loaded onto their truck. It might be that your counts are incorrect, that goods are transported unsafely or unhygienically, or perhaps you’ll mistake one logistical plan for another, and the product will not be sent to the right client. This can be a problem, which is why appropriate inventory management software, worthwhile warehouse managers, and of course, helpful logistical aids such as Chevin can make such a big difference. This way, your logistics is the execution arm of your competent business planning that speaks to the best of your firm..
Poor Communication & Reporting Channels
Communication is everything when it comes to logistics. From updating a driver’s route to reporting an issue with freight, to a careful but necessary disciplinary procedure if a driver contravenes essential guidance (such as driving too many hours on the road, which will fall foul of the law), you need to make sure your departments are adequately communicating. A worthwhile VoIP system connected to drive cabins, apps that allow for seamless contact, and metadata tracking apps that help you check the performance and metadata related to each journey can be reliable. Moreover, internal reporting systems allowing issues to be properly documented will make a big difference.
With this advice, you’re sure to avoid common mistakes when designing your logistics system.