The core concept of vehicle and fleet right-sizing is a comprehensive and thorough functional and operational analysis of all your vehicles individually and your fleet as a whole.
Right-sizing should be supported by a fuel efficient vehicle purchasing strategy that ensures the process also results in the most fuel efficient and cost effective vehicles possible.
Work with your drivers, mechanics, and any other stakeholders to understand the individual and collection of tasks that your fleet needs to accomplish on a regular basis. Work together to develop vehicle and fleet requirements to cover all the things your fleet needs to do. At the end of this step, you should have a clear picture of everything that you need your fleet to accomplish.
Record this on paper and share it with others to make sure that nothing is missing or redundant. Take time during this process as it will set the foundation of your fleet for the future.
Once you understand everything that you need your vehicles and fleet to accomplish, design the “ideal vehicles” and “ideal combination of these vehicles” (“ideal fleet”) that would best serve your needs while minimizing your investment. Record this on paper.
Involve anyone that was involved during the previous step. This can be time consuming and will be an iterative process, but it leads to significant financial benefits and GHG reductions.
Once you have developed this “ideal fleet” and understand the vehicles and equipment that make it up use a fuel efficient vehicle purchasing strategy to find the most fuel efficient vehicles possible that collectively meet your fleet requirements.
Revisit this process and your current “ideal fleet” design regularly to ensure that it is up to date with changing responsibilities, processes, and technologies.
The City of Vancouver and the City of Victoria have all gone through vehicle and fleet right-sizing efforts. They have reduced the amount of their capital investment in vehicles and lowered GHG emissions as a result.