For most of us, October and November marked a refreshing end to the hot summer months, beautiful fall scenery and the beginning of the holiday season. Unfortunately, for the transportation and logistics industry, it means preparation for what is sure to be a frigid, snowy and rigorous winter ahead. Road conditions for truck drivers can be predictably unpredictable, and potentially dangerous. Preparing your vehicle for the months ahead is necessary, as unexpected expenses typically occur during this time due to poor weather conditions. Preparing finances with EFS integrated payable options in advance will offer easier solutions for when the snow or hail puts you in a bind.
For this hard- working industry of Fleet Managers and truck drivers, when November approaches all hands are on deck, and it starts with preparation for business on AND off the roads. Fleet Managers in all states are readying what they can in order to respond in the event of an emergency. Advancements in technology have armed managers and drivers with efficient and responsive tools that make a haul smoother and easier. OTR payment systems allow fast and generally flawless transaction at times when cash is critical. Tools like fleet cards and fuel cards give drivers access to fuel locations, product discounts and real-time security. Fleet management makes this fueling technology a priority because it offers an edge in a tough industry during a rigorous season.
Financial services companies like EFS can also provide complete payment optimization to get employees and vendors paid while maximizing an efficient system for AP teams.
When drivers are out on the road during these brutal winter months, fleet managers need to have clear and transparent visibility. Integrated payable options can become invaluable in the winter months by providing critical payment solutions for unexpected repairs, towing, weight stations, tags, truck/trailer parts, tolls, hotels, tires and mobile communications. Additional web-based tools that are often taken for granted can become priceless when the weather makes the trip seem impossible. Tools like temporary permitting allows a company to order trucking permits online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and drivers can have access to the completed permit anywhere there is an internet connection and a printer.
Electronic Payments enable drivers across the country the security to know that money will be available when it is needed particularly in harsh weather conditions.
While drivers have access to a variety of card solutions, they may not always be the right answer. In cases where cards have been lost or they are not an option, EFS Checks and MoneyCodes can provide immediate payment or access to cash. These types of solutions are ideal for fleet brokers and are a convenient and simple way to keep the fleet moving especially in emergency situations that seem to arise during the harsh winter months. Because these Cash/Money Transfers work like a personal or company check, they have nearly universal acceptance and provide advance funds to drivers immediately. They can be used for instant payment on roadside services, repair shops, and at fueling locations that do not take a fuel card. They are also available online or through a mobile app making the process even more accessible and stress free. These apps are just as valuable to fleet management as they are to drivers in that they provide complete control, access and visibility. Fleet managers can take care of individual drivers on the front end while tracking transactions, activating or inactivating codes, checks or card, overriding cards, and loading cash to cards on the back end.
Fleets and drivers are preparing for winter by checking hardware. Checking off the list could be absolutely crucial to a driver’s survival on the road.
- Routes and fueling locations
- Cooling system
- Fuel filter and water separator
- Air dryer
- Engine block heater
- Fuel additives
- Tires and chains
- Emergency and first aid kits
- Warm weather clothing
Fleet Management is preparing for winter by focusing on the security and strength of the financial supply chain by checking the software.
- Fleet Payment Solutions
- Integrated Payables
- Fuel technology
- Virtual Cards
- Fleet and Fuel Cards
- Payment Optimization
- Secure Payment Networks
- Mobile apps
Either way, winter is coming and it pays (in more than one way) to be prepared!