From telematics to online parts purchasing, where should you begin and what should you consider when selecting your go-to tools for fleet management? Keep these six factors in mind when starting your search.
1. Think Digital
New technology has brought to life many new ways to manage your material handling fleet. While digital may seem like a given these days, some businesses are still relying on older established internal methods to manage their forklift fleet assets or simply don’t have the information stored electronically at all. Where possible, now is the time to think “what if” and to question your existing processes. Consider moving away from paper records and move toward something more versatile.
2. Scope Out Your Pain Points and Requirements
What minimum criteria do you need for today, and what is your future wish list? When planning to optimize your forklift fleet management tools, don’t settle on just the criteria to fix today’s challenges. Take your time and map out your possible future needs. Perhaps your biggest pain point today is centralizing your forklift maintenance billing across separate locations–but once that problem is solved, what’s next?
3. Centralize Your Tools
Once you have your list of forklift fleet management system requirements and needs, begin your research. Where possible, look for ways to select common platforms that allow you to achieve multiple goals, such as reviewing fleet management invoicing and your current monthly fleet usage data in one location. Centralizing your tools with one supplier or one tool will make it even easier for you to have increased visibility to your fleet management process while also simplifying the time you spend accessing sites or systems to gather information.
4. Ensure 24/7 Access
A timely response to emergencies is critical to keeping your business running smoothly. Need to order parts or schedule next day’s maintenance at midnight? You can’t afford to wait weeks, days or even hours before getting your forklift back in operation, so make sure the forklift fleet management solution you choose is available to you around the clock.
5. Reliable Offline Support
Connecting offline is just as important as connecting online. Your warehouse is unique and long distance or online support might not always have the right solution to your difficulties. An online solution is convenient, but make sure your forklift fleet management solution can also help you on-site and in person when necessary.
6. Commit To An Annual Review
Just like a forklift needs regular scheduled maintenance, your forklift fleet management process also needs regular maintenance to ensure it’s still working for you. A solution may have worked a few years ago, but our environment is always changing. Does that solution still work today, or one year from now or five years from now? Take some time every year to re-evaluate your fleet management solution to see what needs improvement.
MCFA offers a suite of tools that just might fit all of your fleet management requirements–called Lift Truck Solutions. Click here to learn more about the capabilities of Lift Truck Solutions.
Whatever solution you choose, make sure it works for you and your operation. Not sure where to start? For additional guidance on choosing the right forklift fleet management tools, your local MCFA dealer is always here to help.