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Do You Need a Fleet Data Analyst?

Fleet management is a complex and dynamic process that involves managing a fleet of vehicles, including cars, trucks, buses, and myriads of off-road equipment to ensure their optimal performance, safety, and efficiency.

Fleet managers are responsible for overseeing the operation, maintenance, servicing, and repair of these vehicles, while also ensuring that they meet regulatory compliance standards and environmental requirements. One of the most valuable assets that fleet managers have at their disposal is data from a fleet management information system (FMIS) and a multitude of integrations which can help them make informed decisions and optimize fleet performance. This is where a fleet management data analyst comes in.

The Role of a Data Analyst
A fleet management data analyst is responsible for collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data related to a fleet of vehicles. This includes data on fuel consumption, maintenance costs, vehicle downtime, driver behavior, and more. By analyzing this data, a fleet management data analyst can help fleet managers identify areas where they can potentially reduce costs and improve efficiency.

For example, they may discover that certain vehicles are consistently underperforming and require more maintenance than others, or that certain drivers are engaging in risky behaviors that are increasing fuel consumption and maintenance costs.

Benefits of Hiring a Data Analyst
One of the key benefits of having a fleet management data analyst is that they can help fleet managers identify and address issues before they become more serious and costly. For example, by monitoring data on tire wear, a fleet management data analyst can alert fleet managers to potential tire failures before they occur, allowing them to replace the tires before they cause an accident or require more extensive repairs. This not only helps to ensure the safety of drivers and passengers but also helps to reduce vehicle downtime and repair costs.

Another benefit of having a fleet management data analyst is that they can help fleet managers identify trends and patterns in data that can inform future decision-making. For example, by analyzing data on fuel consumption, a fleet management data analyst can identify areas where fuel economy can be improved, such as through driver training programs or the adoption of more fuel-efficient vehicles. This can help to reduce fuel costs and lower the fleet’s carbon footprint.

Research has shown that fleet management data analysts can be highly effective in helping fleet managers identify and address cost-saving opportunities. For example, a study conducted by Verizon Connect found that fleet managers who used data analysis tools to monitor vehicle performance and driver behavior were able to reduce fuel costs by up to 13.2% and maintenance costs by up to 14.6%.

The beauty of data analysis is it can be conducted anywhere in the world remotely while granting access to the server where it’s stored. Many consultation companies now offer data analytical services for their clients where they ensure high quality data standards to provide empirical analyses complete with their findings and recommendations based on internal case studies. The advantage of using a third-party data analyst is they tend to be unbiased and more objective than internal analysts.

Lastly, the position of data analyst is somewhat of a unicorn in today’s fleet management area. Wherein, a single remote data analyst can be assigned to multiple fleets at a fraction of the cost of finding, recruiting, and retaining a full-time analyst.

In summary, a fleet management data analyst can be an asset to any fleet management team. By analyzing data and providing insights into fleet performance, they can help fleet managers identify cost-saving opportunities and improve efficiency, ultimately paying for themselves and contributing to the overall success of the fleet.

Steve Saltzgiver is senior advisor for RTA.