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Chatty Chassis

Getting Creative with Fuel Budgets & Technology

March 18, 2016

by Lauren Fletcher - Also by this author

It’s clear: Fuel prices have remained steady and lower than the highs of previous years and forecasts are expecting this trend for at least the foreseeable future, for both gasoline and diesel fuels. 

Fleet managers are rejoicing; for once, they are not going over budget with their fuel expenditures. But, one fleet manager recently confided in me, “I am already worried about next year. If I don’t spend my budget, it gets reduced for 2017, and you never know what prices will do.”

His creative solution? Working in some possible investments for any remaining fuel budget toward the end of the year. By taking a portion of your remaining fuel budget and investing it in fuel-saving technologies, alternative-fuel infrastructure, or driver education, will pay off in the long run with reduced fuel expenditures.

And, taking the time now to start the process provides months of research, opportunities to pilot possible solutions (often at little to no cost), and the ability to see what happens with overall fuel costs. If at the end of the year there is some cushion leftover in your fleet’s fuel budget, you are armed and ready to utilize what you can to help ensure future cost savings.

This way, when fuel expenditures rise beyond the prior year's spend, which they are bound to do again, you already have the technology or infrastructure in place to make reductions. Or, should fuel remain steady for the foreseeable future, you have more leftover in your fuel budget for additional changes and investments.

The recent NTEA - Work Truck Show held March 1-4 in Indianapolis was teeming with new technologies, systems, and ways for fleet managers to cut down costs, or invest a little extra in their fleet’s future. From fuel-saving technologies to productivity enhancing solutions, the possibilities for improvement are endless with a little time and money.

What creative ideas have you implemented to ensure your fuel budget doesn’t shrink in coming years?

E-mail me, let’s chat!

Lauren Fletcher
Executive Editor
[email protected]

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Author Bio

Lauren Fletcher

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Executive Editor

Lauren Fletcher has been covering the fleet industry since 2006 and is currently the Executive Editor of Work Truck Magazine. Over the past 10 years, Fletcher has written and edited for Automotive Fleet, Fleet Financials, Government Fleet, Green Fleet, Vehicle Remarketing, and Business Driver magazines. A hot rod enthusiast from a young age, Fletcher has a fascination with cars and a love of trucks, from the classics to the new releases.

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