The electrification of fleets has become a preoccupation amongst Australia’s forward-thinking fleet managers.
The electrification of fleets is no longer an option but a necessity. As governments worldwide crackdown on emissions and fuel prices continue to rise, Australian fleet managers will soon have to switch to electric vehicles (EVs) to keep pace with the changing landscape.
The Inevitability of the Switch
With the rapid advancement of battery technology and the increasing availability and range of electric vehicles, many Australian utilities and local governments plan to electrify their fleets. However, as with any significant change, many challenges lie ahead.
When do fleet managers “take the leap” and replace ageing internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles with their electric variants?
Australian organizations should consider the close integration between electric vehicles and fleet management information systems (FIMS) when evaluating the advantages of adopting electric vehicles.
The Challenge – Managing the Complexities of EVs
Fleet managers will have to plan and prepare for adopting electric vehicles. Electric vehicles require different maintenance programs, charging infrastructure and, in some cases, personnel than ICE vehicles.
They also drive differently, having their own braking characteristics compared to ICE vehicles, which can take some getting used to. And will require training of drivers.
Of course, when mentioning the challenges of electrification, it’s hard not to address the elephant in the room. What about the range of electric vehicles, particularly in a work setting?
New EV drivers need to be aware of the limited range of electric cars, the availability of charging points and how to plan their routes accordingly.
The Benefits of Going Electric
Switching to electric vehicles can lead to significant environmental and maintenance cost savings. EVs have zero tailpipe emissions, reducing air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. They also have fewer moving parts and require less maintenance than traditional internal combustion engine vehicles, reducing maintenance costs over their lifetime.
Automating data collection using telematics and vehicle sensors is essential to modern fleet management. Electric vehicles help this by their very nature, with sensors to record everything from tyre pressure to the glove box opening. Combined with Telematics, real-time data collection means that the fleet manager has a vast range of data to analyse to improve the understanding of their fleet, monitoring battery health, charge status and energy consumption.
It is impossible to make sense of all the complex and voluminous data associated with an electric vehicle in its raw state; a FIMS like Formbird FLEET is ready to find exceptions and monitor trends. Helping fleet managers, stay on top of maintenance schedules, and ensuring drivers’ safety and their vehicles’ proper usage.
Route Optimisation: how a FIMS will increase the range of electric vehicles.
Formbird FLEET’s route optimisation functionality helps drivers maximise their range by identifying the most efficient routes based on several factors, such as traffic conditions, distance, and time constraints. By integrating with telematics devices that provide real-time data, the system can calculate the most energy-efficient routes, helping to reduce energy consumption and emissions.
Fleet management software can also alert drivers of upcoming hazards and weather conditions affecting their range, allowing them to adjust their driving behaviour accordingly. By providing drivers with optimised routes and alerts, Formbird FLEET will reduce costs and extend the distance an electric vehicle can travel.
Driver Safety Training and Utilisation Metrics
FIMS like Formbird FLEET provide valuable insights into driver behaviour, recording harsh breaking and excessive acceleration. A better understanding of vehicle utilisation will inform fleet managers’ decisions about when to invest in driver training, how to share vehicles or retire aging vehicles and invest in new electric models.
The electrification of fleets offers many benefits for organisations, including increased efficiency, driver safety, vehicle utilisation, and progress toward sustainability goals. However, the transition to electric vehicles will be complex and requires fleet managers to plan accordingly. Fleet Management Information Systems (FMIS), such as Formbird FLEET, can help organisations navigate the challenges of fleet electrification by providing training, monitoring data, and optimising operations.
Formbird FLEET will help fleet managers reduce costs, improve fuel efficiency, and extend the range of electric vehicles. By investing in FIMS and transitioning to electric fleets, organisations can achieve productivity objectives and sustainability goals while improving driver safety and satisfaction levels.
Ultimately, the transition to electric vehicles is inevitable for fleets looking to reduce their carbon footprint, improve operating costs, and better understand what’s happening to their fleet vehicles.