How can fleet card reporting help?
Whether your business has one vehicle or 300, a fleet card captures detailed data about purchases and behavior patterns across your fleet. Fleet cards provide you the ability to accurately analyze your vehicles and drivers so you can make better decisions for your business.
Our fleet card data is automatically captured and sent to an online portal, where it syncs with your backend accounting system. This eliminates the need to collect paper receipts from drivers.
What happens to all of this data once it’s captured? It’s organized for you in easy-to-use reports, allowing you to gain a comprehensive view of your fleet and areas where you can improve operations and reduce costs.
Best practices for fleet card reporting
When you use a fleet card, you have access to robust reporting options, with control over the types of reports you run and how to best use your fleet data. By following best reporting practices, you can increase efficiency and profitability for your business.
1. Create focus with a fuel policy
Designing a fuel policy allows you to clarify which data points are most critical to your business and which reports will be the most valuable.
Design a company-wide fuel policy and share it with your employees. Segment by groups or even create guidelines for individual vehicles. Once you have parameters in place, you can create vehicle profiles in your fleet card online portal, linking your fuel policy directly to your fleet cards.
Having a fuel policy is a crucial first step to getting the most out of your reporting capabilities.
2. Run high-priority reports automatically
In today’s fast paced world, it’s easy to forget to run a report or to run a report a few days late. With fleet card reporting, you can assign any report to run automatically. You can also choose to have reports emailed directly to you, and anyone else you assign, allowing you to review reports without having to log in.
Fleet card experts recommend this approach for the reports most critical to your business, whether you run them weekly, monthly, or quarterly. Standard reports provide an overview of important numbers. You can also design custom reports to highlight data specific to your business needs.
Automatic reports save you time and effort, and make it more likely that you—and others—will review the data. All of which leads to a healthier, more efficient fleet.
3. Prevent fraud with exception reports
Fraud is a reality that is best approached preventively. In 2015, around 65% of fleet companies reported having experienced external fraudulent attacks. 50% were the victims of fraudulent email solicitations, and the other 15% reported hacks that were linked to organized crime. Exception reports—and other fleet card tools—can help reduce these numbers and improve your bottom line.
Exception reports are a powerful fleet card tool, which work hand-in-hand with transaction controls and real-time alerts. All of these options limit unusual or fraudulent purchases.
You can choose to run an ad-hoc exception report at any time. Select from twelve exception types, including after office hours purchases, diesel fuel, fuel quantity, multiple day purchases, non-fuel purchases, weekend fuel purchases, and more. These reports allow you to quickly see any purchases that don’t fit your parameters.
You can also create flexible exceptions reports, which are automatically sent via email if a purchase falls outside the parameters you set. You can choose filters around individual drivers or vehicles, transaction attributes like fuel grade, quantity, purchase amount, and more.
4. Track fuel economy and optimize maintenance schedules
Before a fleet card purchase, a driver must enter a driver or vehicle ID and a current odometer reading. This two-part authorization links each purchase to a vehicle or driver and allows you to analyze fuel economy.
With this data, it’s easy to identify a gas-guzzling vehicle or a driver who needs more training around fuel-efficient driving. You can also use reports to track odometer readings and analyze per-gallon figures, allowing you to optimize vehicle maintenance schedules.
This kind of reporting is unique to fleet cards, and can help you make concrete changes to your fleet that will result in cost savings and increased efficiency.
5. Regularly review all purchase data
With a fuel policy and regular reports in place, you’re on track to optimizing your fleet card data. Another important step is setting aside time—whether daily, weekly, or monthly—to review all individual fleet card transactions. Running a simple report by time period puts this information at your fingertips.
Checking all transactions means that you’re less likely to miss purchase patterns that could be filtered out by reporting or aren’t caught by exceptions. Perhaps a driver consistently makes purchases that are just below your limit on purchase amount. This wouldn’t trigger an exception report, but it’s a behavior you would want to identify.
By putting an eye on all of your fleet transactions, combined with more advanced reporting, you have a crystal clear view of your fleet costs and behaviors.
Take control of your fleet with reporting
Fleet cards provide a uniquely deep level of data, giving you reports that accurately show fuel costs, vehicle patterns, driver behaviors, and more. Following the above strategies empowers you to get the most value out of your fleet card and reports, allowing your fleet to become more efficient, secure, and profitable.