The best drivers can reduce total fleet costs by 12% below average but the worst can mean a 13% increase, according to figures compiled from Chevin Fleet Solutions' customer base.
David Gladding, sales director at Chevin, said: “There is a growing awareness among fleets about the level of impact that driver behaviour can have on overall costs and these figures underline their concern.
“In terms of an average vehicle life cycle, the difference between the best and worst drivers will run into thousands of pounds per vehicle and even on a medium sized fleet, could mean a total six figure variance.”
Gladding said that the key areas where driver behaviour impacted on vehicle costs were fuel, maintenance, accidents and vehicle condition.
“Generally, fleet managers recognise that less responsible drivers will have higher fuel consumption and cause more wear and tear to their vehicle, resulting in higher SMR costs.
“However, there is also a pretty strong correlation between that kind of driver behaviour and increased accident rates, as well as a general level of carelessness about the vehicle that can impact on residual values.”
In most fleets, Gladding said, tighter driver controls and an accent on higher levels of personal responsibility tended to have a noticeable impact.
“Where employers make it clear that drivers have a high level of responsibility for the condition and use of their vehicle, the level of variance does close. Not completely, obviously, but enough to make a stronger stance worthwhile.”