Written by: Joseph Tanner, Marketing Executive
For a business owner, paying insurance is an inevitability. Wihout proper management and planning, it's an expense that can get out of control, especially when it comes to business fleets. It's a good idea to make sure that your fleets are insured properly (it is a legal requirement after all), but what's the cheapest way to do this? The good news is you can cut the cost of your insurance premium pretty easily with just a handfiul of steps.
Commercial fleet insurance is insurance that covers all your vehicles and drivers on a single policy. It’s much more manageable – and usually cheaper – than insuring each vehicle individually. The amount of cover mostly depends on your business’ needs, but also on your budget. The minimum you can get is third party only fleet insurance (TPO) which covers other people and their property in an accident, but not your vehicles or drivers. Third party, fire and theft fleet insurance (TPFT), for example, and comprehensive fleet insurance offer more extensive cover but come with a higher price tag.
Generally speaking, to get cheaper commercial fleet insurance, you’ll need to do the follwing:
But what does this mean in practice? The following steps have been proven to get results – that is, reduced commercial fleet insurance premiums.
We recommend that all fleet managers install a vehicle tracking system, to keep track of their vehicles and monitor crucial data, including fuel usage and driver behaviour.
A vehicle tracking system typically uses GPS to show where each vehicle is, in real-time, on a digital map. So, if a vehicle is stolen, you’ll see where it’s gone straight away. Plus, with geofencing you’ll be alerted any time a vehicle enters or leaves areas of your choosing.
With this security in mind, many insurers offer lower premiums to businesses that use vehicle tracking systems.
The newer the vehicle, the more up-to-date its security system, and so the more difficult it is to steal. Plus, safety features are always improving, reducing the risk that drivers will need to make personal injury claims.
Newer vehicles meet more stringent CO2 emissions standards, and are more fuel efficient. If you already have a fleet of older vehicles, replacing them with new models may be expensive. It's up to you whether or not this is a worthwhile cost, but there's no doubt that it'll save you money in the long run.
Dashcams are often used in tying up disputes between drivers. If it is your word against another drivers, a dashcam can settle a case and save you from paying excess. Your no claims discount can save you up to 75% on your policy, with the top 41 major insurers all accepting dashcam footage as credible proof of an incident.
As an incentive, insurers often give discounts to businesses whose fleets are kitted out with dash cams.
Simply put, the more security measures you put on your vehicles, the lower your insurance quote will be.
Making sure they’re fitted with alarms and immobilisers makes your vehicles that much harder to steal, translating to less risk to the insurer.
Insurers want to know that the chances of vandalism and theft are as small as possible. When your vehicles aren’t in use, make sure they’re parked in a secure location. Whether that means investing in fencing, locks and lighting for your communal parking area, or helping drivers to boost their home parking arrangements with extra security measures.
Different insurers may have different ideas about what makes for a safe spot. For example, some don’t like garagesdue to the risk of objects falling on and damaging vehicles. Check with yours to see what their preference would be.
It goes without saying that you want your fleet to be made up of the safest drivers possible. Always ask to see a candidate’s driving record before employing them. If any of your drivers have points or convictions on their licenses, your insurance provider has grounds to charge you more. In particular, insurers will look out for:
A vehicle tracking system can monitor your drivers’ behaviour, alerting you to any unsafe or aggressive habits such as speeding, tailgating or harsh braking. It’s your job to train your drivers up in safer driving, otherwise you may find your renewal quote soaring through the roof.
Many insurers provide driver training programmes through partners, and will offer you a lower premium if your drivers have successfully taken part in one. Just be sure to choose a course that your insurer recognises and values.
You might be able to save money by combining your other insurance policies with fleet insurance. Of course, this will depend on whether or not your insurer will allow it. Some insurance companies can combine public liability insurance and employee liability cover with fleet insurance – meaning you pay less for this ‘bundle’ than you would for three separate insurance policies.
Don't worry, that's where we come in. We can help you and your business decide what solution is right for your fleet.