2021 Trends in Fleet: The Future of Fleet Management

  • 2021 Trends in Fleet: The Future of Fleet Management

Fleet management trends change rapidly as technology develops and common procedures evolve. Following and tracking fleet industry trends over time presents a perfect example of how new technology can change the future of fleet management.

2020 showed us how we can improve our shipping policies and how we manage our fleets. Fleet management trends in 2021 open the door for new and improved shipping systems as we adapt and learn to handle all scenarios better — and plan for the unexpected. Learn about how you can take part in creating the future of fleet management with the upcoming trends.

What changed for fleets in 2020

The global pandemic impacted many aspects of fleet management by pushing people to adapt and grow during unforeseeable and continually evolving circumstances. A few of the main changes included:

  • Health and safety procedures: To keep drivers safe, executives put new cleaning routines in place and required employees to wear PPE. Curbside vendors now offer vehicle sanitation services for ease of access.
  • Remote fleet management: Fleet members needed to meet remotely, and fleet managers had to monitor their team through software. Implementing technology allowed managers to track data and manage their teams from a safe distance.
  • Increased demand: As many people were ordering online, the need for shipping skyrocketed. More people opted for delivery services to stay safe in their homes.

These changes will continue to impact the industry for years to come. 2020 pushed companies to innovate and inspire, and that spark will continue to promote improvements in regulations, technology, and cost management.

What fleets can expect in 2021

2020 brought forth a demand for innovation. To overcome the challenges of the year, people worked to create solutions and improvements that allowed businesses to continue functioning. Based on these developments, we can expect several different fleet trends in 2021.


Telematics became increasingly popular in 2020, as this technology provided a way to get real-time updates and track vehicles. Video footage can help prevent false claims and improve driver safety while also providing valuable instructional opportunities.

A few features of telematics include:

  • Vehicle tracking: You can track your vehicle's location, estimate delivery times, and find the closest driver for new jobs.
  • Insurance assessment: Insurance companies can use telematics to track driver data and determine any risk factors with their driving.
  • Maintenance updates: Monitor the number of hours the vehicle runs, as well as the engine diagnostics. Save money by staying on top of repairs and fleet maintenance requirements.

With GPS tracking and in-cab video, telematics were incredibly popular in 2020 and will continue to thrive in 2021. These systems make communication simple and help increase driver safety. Performing workflow objectives remotely saves time so your team can focus more on performing their work with excellence.


Along with increased telematics usage, 2021's report on fleet trends will see a heightened emphasis on safety. In addition to stricter cleaning regimens to prevent the spread of disease, there will be a focus on new technology for maintaining driver safety. For example, in-cab devices will allow drivers to receive alerts about excessive speed, seatbelt usage, and reckless driving. Managers can address these problem areas to keep the driver and others safe.

After analyzing the information, managers can assess their performance and create new standards for drivers. The technology and collected data will let them develop new policies to improve driving records. Investing in your vehicles will also reduce accidents and behavioral risks, which will save you money in the long run.


GPS technology has become a staple for fleet operations, with most companies considering it indispensable. With robust software with GPS technology, drivers can pre-plan their routes, get live updates, and manage their time all on the road. GPS offers real-time updates, and when combined with telematics, can connect you to your drivers at any time.

GPS services can find the best routes to enhance productivity and monitor idle time to ensure team members are staying on the job. The number of people using navigation technology in their vehicles will continue to climb in 2021, so investing in a quality service is a wise move.

Remote fleet management

Remote fleet management has become the future of fleet management. Most of the fleet trends for 2021 and the following years relate to remote fleet management. Electric logging devices (ELDs) are part of this system, helping drivers follow active and rest period requirements. Transparency in operation allows managers to know how their drivers are doing without physically being there.

Fleet managers can track mileage, departures, arrivals, and routes from their mobile portal. This service allows fleet management to be fully remote while still increasing productivity. Drivers and managers can complete all tasks in the same system rather than multiple outlets that take up valuable time.

Some of these systems can be installed simply without requiring any hardwiring, so this technology will continue to expand in the industry. Fleet management software can maximize your time and budget throughout the year. Get real-time data on your efficiency, road safety, and fuel expenses to avoid extra costly situations.

Electric vehicles

Electric vehicles (EV) are a buzzing topic in both the personal and commercial world. They are environmentally friendly, and their operating cost is typically lower than that of a traditional gasoline engine. As they grow in popularity, the maintenance costs are becoming more affordable as well.

As EVs continue to evolve, the costs of owning one become more and more realistic. If you want to invest in or rent new vehicles, EVs are an environmentally sound option that can save you money in the long run. Additionally, multiple companies are working to develop electric heavy trucks that can take this technology to the realm of the long haul, so further innovation throughout 2021 is highly likely.

Explore new fleet management solutions with Rand McNally

Remote fleet management gives you data, communication, and documentation right at your fingertips. This powerful technology lets you keep track of your fleet and stay connected so you can improve efficiency, enhance driver performance, and provide the real-time updates customers expect in today's marketplace.

If you are looking for fleet management solutions for your team, Rand McNally offers premium services to make remote management and organization simple. Contact us today to request a demo or pricing information.

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