Fleet owners today are always watching for ways to cut dollars from their operating budgets. One often overlooked method of doing so is by cutting insurance costs. These are a few steps business owners and managers who operate fleets of all sizes can take to reduce insurance costs.
1. Manage Risks
The more steps you take, as a business, to minimize the risks for your vehicles and drivers, the lower your insurance costs will be. Begin by assessing your current risks. Consider instituting driver training programs that include stringent defensive driving elements.
Fleet News reports that younger drivers, between the ages of 17 and 20 are twice as likely to make insurance claims and those claims generally cost three times more and involve bodily injuries 10 times more than drivers of other ages. With that in mind, you should consider instituting additional training for young drivers and, perhaps limit their nighttime driving.
2. Be Selective When Hiring New Drivers
Insurance costs for drivers over the age of 25 are typically lower than those for younger drivers. Perform additional background checks, particularly those involving driving records can reveal a history of reckless driving, distracted driving, speeding, and alcohol or substance abuse related incidents. Look for drivers who have experience driving and who have a history of driving safely.
3. Train Drivers on Safety
Defensive driving classes are a good place for all drivers to begin. Even if they've had driver training in the past, it's never a bad idea to hold refresher courses and you'll know, when the training concludes that your drivers have certain safety basics down. The ROI in lower premiums may not be immediate, but a company culture that values safety will help your fleet net lower long-term insurance rates over the long term.
4. Utilize Technology
The technology exists for insurance companies to monitor the driving habits and speeds of your drivers on the road. From fleet telematics to new driver cams that allow views into the cab of the truck to monitor driver activities (mobile phone usage, distracted driving, eating while driving, etc.) and what's taking place on the road simultaneously, these devices help protect fleets and drivers - and their insurance providers - against false claims.
5. Incorporate Stellar Vehicle Security
It's important to secure not only the vehicles in your fleet, but also the cargo they carry. GPS assisted tracking systems, alarms, and even driver cams can aid in defending trucks from theft while traveling. Vetting your drivers for criminal history and checking previous employment along with taking extra measures to secure and monitor cargo can help reveal potential problems with disappearing cargo.
6. Combine Insurance Policies
Otherwise referred to as bundling, combining insurance policies for your fleet business can actually save you a bundle on premiums. What this refers to is purchasing multiple policies from one company such as, business insurance, liability insurance, fleet vehicle insurance, etc. When you do this, the insurer gives you a discount on each of the policies as a way to reward your loyalty to their products.
A collection of small steps can yield big results when it comes to lowering the costs of your fleet's insurance needs. Don't forget to revisit your fleet insurance policies yearly to look for deeper cuts that can be made and additional discounts technology may make available for your needs.
Contact a HUB Transportation Advisor today.