Are fleet managers getting busier?

A lot of work needs to be done to keep a fleet in Australia on the move. Along with vehicle maintenance and purchasing new cars, fleet managers also have to keep track of a number of drivers. 

This includes keeping them and their vehicles safe and well maintained while ensuring they have the resources to complete the job at hand. And, according to new research, these drivers are getting noticeably busier, working longer hours and driving longer, meaning fleet managers have to be on their toes. 

Naturally, this creates extra demand for maintenance and safety training. What else do you need to know?

Work-related driving on the rise

Plenty of people make a career out of driving, and while we all wish it was as a Ferrari test driver, it's more likely to be as a travelling salesperson, taxi driver or tradesperson. 

According to new research from the The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, people are spending more time driving in relation to work, whether that's in their daily commute or while on the job. 

A September 2 Automotive Fleet article on the study revealed that the amount of time spent on these activities is rising more for women than men. The study found that women are driving more than 4.6 per cent longer than they did compared to a decade ago, significantly more than the 3.7 per cent recorded by their male counterparts. 

What else is changing?

The amount of time people spend in their cars isn't the only thing that has changed for fleet managers in the past decade, the type of vehicles they're maintaining has also taken on a whole new shape.

SUVs have rapidly risen in popularity, despite the calls for green cars and more sustainable transport options. According to the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries, small SUVs in particular are seeing the bulk of this growth. In August of this year, sales of these vehicles rose by more than 50 per cent compared to figures recorded last year.  

However, proving that some things will never change, Toyota was still the most popular brand, accounting for 16.1 per cent of all sales. 

A call back to classic Australian cinema is also changing the way drivers around the country behave. Mad Max: Fury Road roared onto cinema screens earlier this year, revitalising a dormant franchise that had been resting for decades. 

Roy Morgan Research found that those who saw the film were more likely to want a car that's fun to drive compared to the rest of the population.