Benchmarking yourself against other like-minded and similar business operations is a key way to see how you stack up against others.
It allows you to validate your performance based on comparative peer data, identify areas of improvement and opportunity and to highlight significant trends affecting your operations. There are many benchmarking products and services out there in the transportation industry, and many of them provide great information.
One thing is missing from the Canadian marketplace, however, and that is a benchmarking tool that is specifically designed with the private and dedicated fleet operator in mind.
The majority of the surveys out there, and any that I have seen recently, are designed for the for-hire segment of the industry. That is about to change.
Starting in 2017, in conjunction with the National Private Truck Council (NPTC), the PMTC will be introducing the PMTC Canadian Benchmarking Survey Report. This will be the first specific Canadian private fleet benchmarking report issued since 2011. As readers of this column will know, private fleets are a vastly different operation than for-hire fleets. A for-hire fleet’s main business – and in most cases its only business – is to be a transportation service provider. They haul other peoples’ freight for compensation.
The private fleet is a piece of a larger corporation. The main purpose of the private fleet is to ensure the product and/or service that their corporation provides is delivered to its customers efficiently, on time and undamaged. Private fleets generally exist, in part, so the corporation they are a part of has more control over its product and can ensure its customers are always the number one priority.
A private fleet, it is said by some, is in the trucking business by default. Although some of the issues faced by the for-hire and private sector are similar – such as fuel costs, driver health and wellness, the driver shortage (not near as dire an issue for private fleets), complying with regulations – the reasons the fleet is in business, and how they judge their performance, are vastly different.
For private fleets to truly judge how they are doing in comparison to those who operate in a like-minded environment, a benchmarking survey that concentrates on their sector is vital. The PMTC has engaged with a great partner to ensure the benchmarking tool that will be provided to its members will be of top quality, right out of the gate.
Our partner, the NPTC, the private fleet representatives south of the border, have been producing a private fleet benchmarking survey annually since 2005. This survey is an invaluable tool for its members, and is a highly-respected product.
The PMTC formed a Benchmarking Survey Committee to review the current NPTC survey and make amendments to ensure it had a truly Canadian flavor, and was representative of what our member fleets wanted to compare.
With the guidance and expertise of the NPTC in producing a high-quality benchmarking tool and the PMTC Benchmarking Committee’s experience operating in the Canadian market, you can be assured the first edition of this survey will be a must read for PMTC member fleets.
The survey is being vetted as we speak, and will be distributed to PMTC fleets in early 2017. The benchmarking report will then be completed in time for our annual general meeting and conference in June. A high-level summary of the report will be presented at our conference and the final report will be distributed to all PMTC members at no cost.
This is simply another value-added product, a benefit of your membership. Through our strong partnership with the NPTC, PMTC members will also have the added value of receiving the NPTC Benchmarking Survey for US Operations, which will allow them to compare Canadian and US operations.
Mike Millian is president of the Private Motor Truck Council of Canada, the only national association that represents the views and interests of the private fleet industry. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.