1. Get the Right Power

Could switching to electric save over 30% per annum? Despite the current trend for LPG, electric power and diesel still remain popular forms of operating forklift trucks. However, when it comes to which forklift truck is more cost efficient, it seems there are pros and cons to all. The annual operating costs (rental, maintenance & fuel) for an average 2.0 tonne capacity model differs depending on the fuel type; electric and diesel costing around £6.5K a year and LPG nearing the £8.5K mark, so it may seem cheaper to go for electric or diesel. Electric trucks are generally more expensive to buy than diesel and LPG trucks and, depending on the life span of the truck, may require double the batteries. LPG on the other hand is cheaper in bulk, but susceptible to price rises. Diesel trucks can be run on DERV (red diesel) which is the cheapest fuel on the market but illegal for use in trucks travelling on the road. In switching to electric you may be buying a more expensive piece of kit, but paying up to 38% less in fuel.

2. Weigh up your suppliers
It’s surprising, but true, that some manufacturers provide an ‘approximate’ supply of goods. For example, the brewing industry doesn’t sell its beer in pints, it sells them in barrels, which could contain more, or less, than the 22 gallons the landlord expects. Matches too come in boxes marked ‘contains between 90-100’ and there’s similar approximate measures in many bulk industries. When something says 90-100, you can be sure that it closer to 90 than 100. A set of weighing scales can provide valuable insight on suppliers of items like paper rolls. If they’re consistently light, as has been known to happen, users are able to re-negotiate their supply on the basis that ‘more or less’ usually means less.

3. Know your fleet
It’s usually the case that the bigger the fleet, the bigger the potential saving. In our experience fleet utilisation can often be around 20-30%. That means you’re paying 70% too much! Adding fleet utilisation systems to your fleet allows you to put hard facts in the place of guess work and anecdotal evidence.
It may seem obvious, but If you’re lifting heavy stuff, you need bigger, larger capacity trucks to do the job. Conversely, you don’t want a truck that’s too big if you’re not lifting very much. Not having to buy a more expensive, larger capacity truck saves money if you’re not lifting large loads.

4. Train your operators
Training may substantially lower operating costs. Although it is a legal requirement for operators to be trained on equipment, making sure they are trained to higher standards can cut also costs. Well trained drivers, know the ins and outs of their vehicles and are more aware of obstacles around the site. This tends to mean that they cause fewer accidents because they are more aware and more informed with how to use their vehicle. Studies show that this means that they are in less accidents. If they are indeed having fewer, there are lower costs for the repair of equipment and fewer costs relating to damaged building infrastructure and accidental equipment damage.

5. Smart parts provision
Save on every part by shopping around. Knowing which suppliers to choose to supply the right parts is vital when cutting your costs. It may be one supplier can get the parts you need for a much cheaper price than your current supplier as they may have more access to the parts at a cheaper agreed price. Windsor can supply parts for almost all makes and models of forklift trucks, access platforms and warehouse equipment carrying over 90% of line items in stock. Their branches have daily replenishments of stock and their parts prices are highly competitive. Furthermore, if Windsor does not have the part in stock, they can obtain them from their established supply agreements, which mean they can be available within 24 hours.