Your community depends on your truck fleet to keep the streets clean. Protect them—and your own bottom line—by investing in fleet maintenance software that will make your job easier.
By Suz Baldwin

Your fleet of waste collection vehicles are a critical part of keeping your community clean. Maintaining them is not just a matter of convenience—it is a necessity. There is no replacement for good old-fashioned wrenching, but the right kind of fleet maintenance software can streamline the way you handle repairs and keep your fleet in outstanding operating condition. Here are five features you should look for when you are ready to invest in such software.

#1: Maintenance Tracking
One truck winding up in the shop can throw off your collection efforts for days. The balm for that is preventive maintenance—fixing problems before they can start. Any fleet maintenance management software you use should track the maintenance and repair history of every vehicle in your fleet, so you can see what work each truck has coming up and what it has had done. You are not just keeping a vehicle going—you are extending its lifespan.

#2: Inventory Management
What parts do you have in the parts room? What do you need to special order? Parts and inventory can be challenging even in the best of times, and dealing with them can often pull techs away from the job at hand. The right software will not make parts appear out of thin air (yet), but it will help you keep your parts room organized and indicate when you need to stock up.

#3: Tech Efficiency
The right kind of fleet maintenance management software also looks at technician performance. It can show you where your techs excel and where they need help, how long particular jobs take, and if there is frequent lulls in work. By understanding where your techs thrive and where you can offer them support, you will bolster their efficiency and help them be more productive while on the clock.

#4: User-Friendliness
If your techs cannot make the software work for them, it is not going to be a very good investment, is it? Everything has a learning curve, but make sure the software you invest in has high marks from reviewers as far as intuitiveness and user manuals go. You will also want to see what kind of customer service the software company provides in case you need to troubleshoot.

#5: Record-Keeping
How often have you scribbled a note down on paper, only to lose it? The right software will track everything for you—the history of a truck, what parts it used, how much they cost, and how much time a repair took, among other things. They also provide a place to store copies of invoices, receipts, photographs (of vehicular damage and repairs, if necessary) to help you comprehensively document your operation.

Streamline Your Challenges
There are lots of applications out there designed for automotive repair shops. Some of them are excellent, but they are not built for heavy-duty, so to speak. They will be geared toward entirely different problems (and an entirely different consumer). Look for software that is made for heavy-duty trucking, such as waste collection trucks, and designed to streamline the challenges faced in maintaining and repairing those vehicles.

Your community depends on your truck fleet to keep the streets clean. Protect them—and your own bottom line—by investing in fleet maintenance software that will make your job easier, not harder. By choosing an application with the aforementioned features, you will be reducing your administrative burden while extending the lifespan of your vehicles. We would say that is a win-win. | WA

Suz Baldwin got her start in the automotive industry, writing and editing for several motorcycle and classic car magazines straight out of college.

This article originally appeared on Fullbay’s blog at Fullbay is a heavy-duty repair shop management platform that enables shops to receive repair requests, invoice customers and everything in between. For more information, visit