How Does Optimizing Your Bus Route Planning Mean Big Savings?
published on October 30, 2015 by Sonia Mastros
Education budgets are tight, and in many school districts, the transportation department is one of the first areas to experience cuts. School districts throughout North America are being urged to up their student safety standards, while at the same time cutting costs. While this is not an easy feat, it’s also not impossible, due to ever advancing transportation industry technology.
One of the ways that your school district can save big is through optimizing its school bus routes. By creating simpler routes using your existing student stop locations, timing, and school assignments, you can greatly impact your transportation service efficiency.
How Route Optimization Saves Districts Money
When your current routes are examined in detail, you’re likely to find hidden costs. Costs that might seem insignificant when analyzed one by one can add up to a huge cost burden. The end goal of route optimization is to decrease both the amount of school buses and drivers needed to run your routes. This leads to fewer costs, due to:
- A reduction in driver hours — More efficient routes leads to the elimination of unnecessary stops, shorter idle times and less time spent on the road.
- Lower fuel usage — Optimizing routes lets you choose a path that minimizes traffic delays and other factors that increase the amount of fuel used. Grouping stops together will reduce idle times, which can also reduce your fuel use.
- Reduced maintenance costs — When buses are utilized effectively, there is less wear and tear.
- Insurance premium savings — A commitment to increasing safety and performance minimizes risk, which can lead to insurance savings.
- Streamlined reporting — An investment in school bus routing software can help your district employ more efficient reporting practices. This saves time and also maximizes state reimbursements.
As beneficial as the route optimization process can be, it’s not something that can be tackled overnight. Getting the most out of your fleet will take careful research and planning. One way to save time is by using a school bus routing and scheduling program with a built in route optimization tool. The BusBoss Fleet Optimization tool generates optimal routes, using pre-set criteria, such as address point geocoding, turn, height and weight restrictions by bus size and forced right side pickups specific to particular grades. When analyzed against your current routes, the money savings are clear.
When you are ready to discover just how much you can save by optimizing bus routes, consult with a professional in the school bus transportation industry. Did you know that by eliminating just one bus your school district can save over $35,000 per year? Contact our team to find out more.
Has your district saved money by implementing bus routing software? We’d love to hear your comments.