The air is colder, holiday themed songs are playing on the radio and images of St. Nick are everywhere. Yes, it is that time of year. With the holidays just around the corner, it really is time to think how we can enjoy the festivities while saving a few bucks. So stop looking under the driver’s seat, office desk or couch for a few extra pennies and try a few simple techniques to save a few dollars during the holidays and after!
If you are a fleet owner, you know that the cost of running an operation is rising drastically. Monitoring driver behavior, optimizing fleet performance and trailer tracking are just a few things that can leave a bit more money in your pocket.
As a fleet owner, finding ways to run your operations efficiently while using your resources effectively saves you money. Most drivers aren’t aware that harsh breaking, sharp turns and speeding account for most fuel wastage. Identifying poor driver behavior with reporting tools in Quadrant Manager will help you pro-actively train your drivers to reduce fuel consumption.
Drivers spend a significant amount of time waiting for dispatch to manually send driver instructions for their next pickup or delivery. All that wasted time turns into dollars and adds to the cost of running a fleet. Webtech Wireless’ Job Management solution allows dispatch release instructions automatically, getting drivers off their phone (saving talking time and talking minutes) and sending them to their next destination quicker.
Equipment that isn’t monitored is at the mercy of trespassers and kleptomaniacs. The Quadrant Trailer Tracking solution can detect unauthorized movements and show you where your trailers are in real-time.
Multi-zone temperature monitoring is a small solution that reaps huge benefits. Did you know that 40% of all food produced in the United States is wasted? And of that 20% is wasted through spoilage during distribution? Prevent food wastage and save dollars by getting real-time alerts when temperatures go above or below a set threshold.
Whether you are in a large building or a basement suite, office space and equipment costs money, a lot of money. Being pro-active and cautious can easily help you reduce overhead and see savings.
Turn the computer off. That’s it. Turning off the computer at the end of the day is the easiest thing you and your staff can do save money and energy. If you work off of a power strip, don’t forget to turn that off as well. According to a 2009 survey, a company with 10,000 desktop computers (powered up but not being used) will waste $260,000 in energy a single year. It is simple, easy and a great step to going green in the office.
Think twice before you print that document in color on a single side of paper. Printing one or two sheets is not expensive, but when you are going through boxes and boxes of paper, printing becomes a pricey line item. Set your printer’s defaults to economy, black and white and double sided and watch your ink and paper consumption go down. Awesome way to save a few bucks, and you probably save a few trees too.
Competition is steep and the market is competitive. A great strategy to save money is to keep true to your vendors. Long lasting relationships with various suppliers and vendors result in multiple benefits including great customer service, bulk order discounts and promotions for loyal customers.
December brings along a lot of happy moments, holiday parties, Christmas trees, great food, desserts galore and a couple of extra inches around the hips. However, every January you pay the price—those jeans feel a bit snug and have burned a little whole in the pocket. Here are a few easy tips to help you save during the holiday season!
If you are like me, the sight of beautiful wrapping getting torn off a present and then immediately getting dumped into the recycling bin makes you cringe. I am all for great packaging (I’m in marketing after all—and a graphic designer) but trust me, you can achieve the same visual appeal in other ways. How about using brown paper bags? Or a few pages from a magazine or the comic section of the newspaper? Re-using things that you already have around the house is a great way to get rid of junk and save money.
If you are part of a large extended family like me, buying presents for everyone can increase the digits on your credit card bill. Why not try Secret Santa? It allows you to focus on getting something special for that one person and also adds the extra fun of who has whom.
Hit the malls early, I mean really early. By shopping early you are able to compare prices, avoid impulse buys and get quality gifts without settling for whatever is left at the store.
Irtiza Zaidi is the Product Marketing Manager at Webtech Wireless. He works closely with the safety professionals in many companies in the oil patch.
Recently, he attended the Petroleum Safety Conference—billed as “Canada’s premiere oil and gas safety conference and tradeshow”—in Banff, Alberta, for a few days to learn more about safety concerns in the oil and gas industry.
Below are his latest discoveries about the Conference and safety professionals.
Irtiza Zaidi: “Before I dive into the meat and potatoes, I wanted to share some insight into the safety profession and the folks I interacted with. I went to one breakout session led by Imperial Oil, which was quite an eye opener. The purpose was to describe the risks that safety professionals take every day on the job and how they deal with them. The idea is that, before we can start preaching to others, let’s evaluate ourselves first.
Now the view I had of safety folks was they were risk averse by-the-book people. They worked Monday to Friday and in their off time did everything possible to avoid risk. They would never cross a yellow light while driving nor would they park without paying. Well, was I was in for a shock!
We had some safety people talking about how they chased storms in Alberta. Winter storms, rain storms, blizzards, and how they had been doing this for 15 years. Another safety person talked about how they wore helmets on their motorcycles while travelling at speeds of 120 on the Canadian highways, but once they got to the US, the helmets came off. Or the safety person who jumped between moving boats in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean while it was raining, so she could help out with a lobster catch.
The presentations I attended were delivered well and the topics of immense importance. Colonel Mark Trostel, Driving Safety Advisor with Encana, presented, Driving Safety: Enhancing Performance, Reducing Exposure, in which he described some of the challenges of using in-cab audible feedback (such as buzzers and beeps), to try to change driver behaviour. He provided helpful statistical information as well as first-hand knowledge of the affect alerts have on drivers.
Here are some statistics shared in this presentation:
40% of all fatalities in the energy industry occur in vehicles
Leading indicators of crashes
- Excessive Braking, following too closely, distracted driving
- Rapid starts and aggressive or reckless driving
- Habitual speeding dramatically increases risk and severity of accidents
- Frequent Lateral “Gs” are precursors to a rollover crash
Encana’s AVL program for its light-duty vehicles provides
- Driver scorecards that were emailed to the driver each week
- Supervisors with the ability to review their drivers’ driving habits
- Providing drivers with feedback about their performance on a weekly basis
- Providing incentives to drivers with good behavior worked
- Having drivers compare themselves with their peers led to the drivers creating their own “Top 100 Club”
What didn’t work?
- Driver feedback by way of audible tones or flashing lights only lasted three weeks before the drivers went back to their old driving patterns.”
“Safe Driving Programs – Why Should I Care?” by Colonel Mark Trostel, EnCana in 2010