The Virtual Fleet Advantage: How Businesses are Gaining a Competitive Edge

Don't have a dedicated delivery fleet? No problem. Read on to discover a simple solution that could keep your skilled employees at the jobsite.

Allison Chen

August 11, 2023
June 11, 2024
Last Updated

In the face of rising costs, tightening budgets, and changing consumer behaviors, finding ways to gain a competitive edge can be difficult. If picking up or delivering items is part of your business model, then finding a cost-effective delivery partner that can grow with you might just give you the competitive edge you’re looking for. 

Enter the concept of a virtual fleet — an innovative approach to meeting delivery needs without the burden of owning and managing a traditional fleet of vehicles and drivers. 

What is a Virtual Fleet?

A virtual fleet is a network of independent contractor drivers hired by a company to provide transportation services. Unlike a traditional fleet, where the vehicles and drivers are owned and managed by the company, a virtual fleet allows companies to outsource their delivery needs. 

This approach can be more cost-effective, flexible, and scalable for businesses that have variable transportation needs throughout the year or do not have the capital to invest in their own fleet of vehicles and drivers.

Why Use A Virtual Fleet?

The simple answer is profitability and growth. When looking at possible levers to pull that would have a positive impact on a company's bottom line, transitioning to a virtual fleet has proven to be a highly effective strategy. 

During a FleetOwner Webinar, executives at Ernst & Young shared a key insight after carrying out a TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) study, “Many think private ownership [of vehicles] provides better financial cost leverage despite having a relatively small fleet size, but only very large fleets can gain the economies of scale that provide cost benefits.” 

Because delivery management companies already have large fleets, they inherently reap the cost savings associated with economies of scale. By outsourcing your deliveries to a third party, you can take advantage of these cost savings too.

4 Ways Virtual Fleets Can Keep You Profitable

  1. Saves You Money

Utilizing Dispatch as your virtual fleet provider can help you sidestep the steep expenses that come with owning and maintaining a fleet of delivery vehicles. Expenses can include: vehicle upkeep, fuel, driver training, payroll, insurance, storage space, and general wear and tear. 

These overhead costs can quickly add up, putting a dent in profits. Even if your delivery needs are limited or seasonal, it can be more cost effective to outsource your deliveries to a single provider that has the bandwidth to handle deliveries at a moment’s notice.

  1. Expand Your Services 

By leveraging Dispatch's cross-country service locations, you can widen your customer reach and expand your business beyond your local area. You'll also have the opportunity to access new service levels, ranging from ASAP to Multi-Stop, as well as delivery Add-Ons to create a customized and hassle-free delivery experience. 

These service extensions will help broaden your delivery windows, not only ensuring parts are delivered to the job site when someone will be available to accept them, but also providing a wider range of delivery options to the customer — strengthening your customer relationships.

  1. Avoid Logistical Nightmares

Delivery logistics can be complicated and when not managed properly, can result in service disruptions. For example, you might have a driver out sick, a last minute delivery after your trucks are already en route, or even a vehicle shortage due to maintenance issues. If this happens often enough, it can have a domino effect that’s harmful to your business. 

Eliminate these scenarios from your operating model by tapping into Dispatch’s experience and knowledge of the delivery industry. Not only can we be your virtual fleet to handle daily or seasonal deliveries, we can grow with you as your business expands. 

  1. Saves Time 

If you're dealing with difficult route planning or multiple order status inquiries from customers, you may be spending a lot of time connecting with your driver then following up with the customer. Plus, your skilled employees may be leaving the jobsite to pick up parts, which can delay their schedule. 

When using Dispatch's network of drivers, you’ll have access to features like real-time tracking and proof of delivery. This data can be automatically shared with customers and employees, eliminating the need to communicate back and forth between driver and customer. 

You’ll also have the ability to create multi-stop delivery routes and saved addresses for recurring delivery locations, both features can make creating orders a quick and seamless task. Since these features save you valuable time, it allows you and your employees to focus on growing your business instead of managing delivery logistics.

Utilizing Dispatch As Your Virtual Fleet Provider

Whether you’re currently managing a fleet or relying on skilled employees to pick up and deliver parts, it may be eating into your profits. Boost your bottom line by using Dispatch as your virtual fleet provider. Marketplace has delivery vehicles, service levels, and solutions to fit any business need. For those already managing fleets, Connect can optimize your delivery process – saving valuable time, resources, and money that you can reinvest. Dispatch can also Integrate with your existing software to simplify ordering and tracking. Choose Dispatch as your on-demand delivery partner so you can focus on growing your business.

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