Fleets are most concerned about aging fleets and replacement budgeting with more than half of survey respondents — approximately 59% — planing to retire in less than 10 years.   -  Photo: Government Fleet via Canva.com

Fleets are most concerned about aging fleets and replacement budgeting with more than half of survey respondents — approximately 59% — planing to retire in less than 10 years. 

Photo: Government Fleet via Canva.com

In June and July of 2023, Government Fleet magazine solicited responses to a biennial survey from its readership, receiving 81 qualified responses from a diverse group of public fleet professionals. Information from this issue labeled “Source: Government Fleet Research” comes from this opt-in survey.

Top Concerns and General Fleet Operations

While 46% of 2021 respondents listed green initiatives as their top concern, 2023 has shifted the focus to aging fleets and replacement budgeting with recruitment following behind. Still, going green continues to be a top priority for fleets with almost 40% listing this as a top concern for the following year.

Similar to the 2021 survey, gasoline vehicles are still the most common among government agencies, followed by diesel then E-85 flex-fuel vehicles. Similarly to the previous survey, electric vehicles make up a small portion of government fleets surveyed.

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Respondents were asked what services they outsource to other vendors Respondents reported that most outsourcing was done for body and paint work (78.26%). This was followed closely by towing then glass.   -  Photo: Government Fleet

Respondents were asked what services they outsource to other vendors Respondents reported that most outsourcing was done for body and paint work (78.26%). This was followed closely by towing then glass. 

Photo: Government Fleet 

Changes in Fleet Services, Outsourcing Work

Respondents were asked what services they outsource to other vendors, with more than one response possible. Respondents reported that most outsourcing was done for body and paint work (78.26%). This was followed closely by towing then glass. These were also the top three outsourcing services in 2021. 

For 2023, body and paint were at the top of the services outsourced while in 2021, glass was most reported. At the bottom of the list for 2023 were PM/repairs for alt-fueled vehicles, computer-related repair issues, and parts management. 

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Roughly half of fleet vehicles were reported to have some kind of telematics device.   -  Photo: Government Fleet

Roughly half of fleet vehicles were reported to have some kind of telematics device. 

Photo: Government Fleet

Federal Vehicles, Inventory, and Acquisition

The federal fleet grew by nearly 2% in fiscal year 2020 with a reported inventory total of 657,506. However, between 2021 and 2022 there was a slight dropoff with inventory totals going from 656,724 to 656,494. 

When looking at total fleet composition by fuel type as well as acquisitions, gasoline was at the top of the list with an inventory of 371,404 and an acquisition of 25,121. E85 (or flex fuel) had the second-highest inventory and acquisition at 166,929 and 7,166, respectively. These were followed by diesel and gasoline hybrid. Electric had an inventory of 2,141 and an acquisition of 53. 

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Public Sector Fleet Manager Salaries Rise Slightly

The vast majority of respondents have been in the workforce for several decades. Here’s how the age groups break down, based on what generation the respondents identify with:

  • Baby Boomer (born 1946-1964): 36.36%.
  • Generation X (born 1965-1980): 54.55%.
  • Millennial (born 1981-1994): 9.09%.

Additionally, the state where the most fleet managers responded to the survey from was California. The other state with the most respondents was Florida. Both age and geographical location can affect salary.

The average salary of fleet manager survey respondents was $105,080.65. Overall, that’s 6.45% higher than the average reported in 2021 — $98,514.

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Public Sector Fleet Managers’ Plans for Retirement, Successors

Retirement is in the near future for numerous public sector fleet managers, and succession plans are underway across many fleet operations.

More than half of survey respondents — approximately 59% — plan to retire in less than 10 years. This is in line with what generation the respondents identify with. That portion of the survey revealed that the vast majority of respondents — about 91% — identify with either Generation X or the Baby Boomers.

About 41% of respondents plan to remain in the industry for 10 years or more before retiring.

When asked whether they plan to stay at their current agency until they retire or leave the industry, just over two-thirds of respondents said they do. Approximately 15% of respondents said they do not, and 18% said they are unsure.

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Staff Writer

Staff Writer

Editorial

Our team of enterprising editors brings years of experience covering the fleet industry. We offer a deep understanding of trends and the ever-evolving landscapes we cover in fleet, trucking, and transportation.  

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