Seventeen ways to lower commercial fleet insurance
Commercial fleet insurance premiums can reduce through the following seventeen steps.
We have grouped them into five areas. Drivers, technology, vehicles, insurers and fleet safety management.
While some are simple practical steps. For example, keep your vehicles secure when not in use. The majority involve gathering analysing and using data. To make informed decisions to reduce risk and improve safety
The result will better control your commercial fleet insurance costs.
Good drivers have fewer accidents and incidents. Good Drivers have fewer claims. Fewer claims mean better premiums.
So, having programs and processes to hire, train, and support good drivers, is a big step in getting lower commercial fleet insurance.
Clean license drivers are best
It is best to have drivers with clean licenses. As drivers who have points or convictions will affect your premiums.
To achieve this start by only hiring new drivers who have clean licenses.
Then if a driver gets penalty points or convictions, update your insurer. They can reassess and discuss the situation. So that you are not surprised by any resulting changes.
Use driver training programs
Having valid driver training programs will lead to cheaper premiums
Additionally, ongoing training will reduce driver risk. As they will be in fewer accidents. Fewer accidents mean fewer claims, which means less impact on your premiums.
If running programs in-house is not possible. Using an external training company will help
Plus the range of driver training programs – from basic to intermediate to advanced. Will allow tailoring of training to your drivers’ needs.
But be sure your insurer recognises the training company. Before committing to using them.
Monitor your drivers
Duty of care means that you already have driver risk programs and regular license checks.
After this, it is a good policy to monitor your drivers. To look for trends in fleet risk.
These could be in individual drivers’ behaviour. Along certain routes. During bad weather. At specific times of the day. Or during certain seasons.
Through this, you identify those drivers, teams, or depots with higher accident trends. Versus the average for your fleet or against industry benchmarks.
Once identified you can target support to those drivers at higher risk. Or those falling below the fleet’s driving standards.
This support can move in an escalating format. From management interventions to training courses, through to disciplinaries.
While this approach helps fleet managers address risk issues. The insight and supporting information. Can also prove your fleet risk management, and improvements in fleet safety. When discussing premiums and rates with your insurers.
That is, monitoring your drivers and acting not only reduces risk. It can also help secure lower insurance premiums.
Keep an eye on the younger drivers
As part of the above, give particular focus to monitoring your younger drivers
Younger drivers are more prone to dangerous driving than older drivers. With accidents peaking in drivers aged eighteen to twenty-five. Because of this many insurers increase rates for younger drivers.
So, be sure to watch and support your younger drivers, to both help and make sure they drive safe.
Technology can offer a range of ways to help reduce commercial fleet insurance premiums. Telematics provides valuable insight into driver behaviour and vehicle use. Trackers, alarms, and immobilisers help prevent stolen vehicles or their recovery.
Telematics is a must
Telematics is a core part of any driver monitoring system. As well as a general fleet management solution.
The data that be got from telematics systems has increased in the last decade.
Anyone wanting to lower their commercial fleet insurance should start with this technology.
As telematics is a core part of what CMS does, we have looked at telematics in these previous posts:
What can you do with telematics data?
Use trackers, alarms, and immobilisers.
Running in parallel with telematics is the installation of trackers, alarms, and immobilisers.
Trackers pinpoint the location of a vehicle. Increasing the chances of recovering a stolen vehicle
Alarms and immobilisers help prevent stolen vehicles, in the first place.
Combined, the anti-theft impact of these technologies help reduce insurance premiums. Or help secure lesser rates.
Cameras are great for evidence
The most important role of dash cams or in-cab cameras is showing who’s at fault in an accident.
Videos are evidence when proving blame and defending against fraudulent claims.
Basically, footage of someone crashing into you, makes the insurance process smoother.
Plus, proving you are not at blame, should not affect your insurance.
Dashcams looking into the cab also show what the driver was doing. Helping identify distracted and dangerous behaviour. For evidence in claims. Or helping in driver reviews by fleet and transport managers.
Keep your fleet young
Having a fleet of younger vehicles could save on your insurance premiums
Newer vehicles have up-to-date security. Making them harder to steal while also having better safety features.
They will also have lower emissions and better fuel efficiency.
While you’ll need to choose the vehicles to get the job done. A consideration of the insurance costs, if there are options, could save you money.
Keep vehicles secure overnight
Proving to your insurer that your fleet is secure, when not in use, can deliver cost savings.
Secure patrolled depots will be the best. But even using benchmark locking systems helps.
Keep vehicles in a good condition
Vehicle maintenance is a key part of fleet operations and management.
If your vehicles are not well maintained your risks will only go up.
The potential for breakdowns, incidents and accidents increase. Having more of these impacts your fleet insurance. So, keeping the fleet well maintained helps with your insurance costs.
Fleet management software helps in this but also engage with your drivers. Encourage and empower them to highlight issues, however small. So those items falling outside of the maintenance schedule are dealt with, and not left.
Working with your commercial fleet insurer, sharing your fleet data and its trends. Will help get you into a great position for negotiating the best premiums.
Review and shop around at renewal time
Don’t settle for your existing insurer’s quote. There is a good chance you’ll get a better offer.
But, if you want to be loyal, ask your insurer for a better quote.
They may even have some suggestions on what you can do to lower the cost. You can support this with your driver and incident monitoring data. Show how you’ve improved in these areas. Illustrate that you are driving down your accident rate.
So, schedule time to at least look at the market offers, at renewal time. Plus, gather the information on your fleet safety management and the impact it is having.
With this, you’ll get yourself into an informed negotiating position with your insurer.
Combine insurance policies
Investigate the options of combining policies. This could lead to reduced overall premiums.
If the insurer wants to keep your business, they should at least be open to these sorts of discussions.
Buy the cover you need
Using your safety data and insight, check that the insurance you have is what you need.
If you don’t need the maximum cover, don’t get it.
Examine what you need, based on your insight. And use that to inform your buy rather than what the insurer recommends.
The two may be the same, but they could also be different, and you could save.
Increase your excess
If your number of claims is coming down, an option may be to increase your excess to get lower premiums.
Again, analysis of the data you have on your fleet will help inform if this is a valid option or not.
Isolate your worst drivers
Your worst drivers only make up 10-15% of your fleet drivers. But, they will be impacting your premiums.
Training, management intervention, and other support will help them improve. But to help reduce insurance costs, you could move them to a separate policy.
That is, put those bad behaviour, more accident-prone drivers, on a different policy.
You can identify and track those drivers through your monitoring.
When you have that information, discuss it with your insurer. What would happen if you isolated those drivers? Would your main premiums go down? Would the decrease outweigh the cost of the extra policy?
If yes, then put it in place.
Fleet safety management
Rapid FNOL and risk insights are key to helping you get better insurance premiums.
Know your risk situation and trends
Combine your driver data with your claims data and other relevant data to assess your risk.
Know where you are now, how the trend has moved in the past and what it’s likely to do in the future.
Share, confirm and work this data with your insurers so that you agree on the situation. Then work together on a fleet safety and risk management plan to make your fleet a better risk.
This level of management insight and control. Coupled to the engagement with your insurer. It will put you in the best place for discussing insurance premiums or getting new quotes.
FNOL – don’t waste time making a claim
We covered the benefits of making First Notification of Loss (FNOL) in this recent post.
The basics are, the faster you take control of an accident, the more you can control the costs involved.
Technology can help with this. But again, encouraging, and empowering drivers to notify fleet managers as soon as possible after an incident will help.
By controlling costs, through rapid FNOL. Claims will be lower and the impact on your insurance premiums minimised.
Clara can help with commercial fleet insurance
Our software platform, Clara, can help in lowering fleet insurance premiums.
Bringing together data, from telematics to training records to licence checking. Clara cuts through the data noise. Alerting fleet managers to only the incidents they need to react to for FNOL. While giving them the trend information for fleet safety management programs.
Clara automates and simplifies the answering of these four questions;
(1) Is your risk profile going up or down?
(2) What high-risk behaviours are common in your fleet?
(3) Which drivers are the highest risk and most likely to have a claim?
(4) What incidents are happening right now that I need to respond to?
Go here to find out more