In today’s world of razor-thin profit mar-gins, fleet managers are always on the lookout for ways to maximize fleet returns. This is usually no easy task with-out the proper resources. Every year, fleet managers are learning more decisive steps to remarket vehicles and trucks that can drastically improve the bottom line.

I joined the fleet industry working with a 22,000-vehicle fleet for a major telecommunications company. Remarketing results were always the fleet manager’s topic of discussion.

When a fleet manager requests a fair market value quote from a remarketing channel on a particular vehicle or truck, the reply is usually “between $3000-$5000” and a decision whether to sell is made based on that information. While the information is viable at that point, by the time the unit is actually turned in, picked up, sold, and funds credited back to the customer, 55-65 days have passed.

The phone call I always dreaded was from a manager complaining about lower than expected financial returns and the resulting negative impact on the budget. All I could do was listen. The sale was final.

A remarketing company such as Fleet Leasing Disposal, Inc. (FLD) pays what the vehicle is worth that day, thereby eliminating hidden losses associated with continued depreciation and various fees. FLD never charges any fees for its remarketing services. When researching remarketing solutions, don't get caught up in the nickel-and-dime fee game, as often hidden costs can quickly turn a positive return into a loss.

Another factor that must be considered in the ongoing search for higher returns is keeping current with the real-time data of the wholesale market. FLD tracks the constantly changing used-vehicle market throughout the United States and Canada daily to make sure the highest return is obtained for the make and model of every vehicle or truck.

You will find, like I did, that vehicle remarketing is not a one-size-fits-all solution.

I realize most fleet managers don’t have time to handle all of the details of matching vehicles to buyers and markets. When searching for a remarketing solution, make sure the remarketing processes chosen allow the flexibility needed to get the most out of your terminated fleets. Looking back at the telecommunication fleet I worked with years ago, we needed companies like FLD that had the capabilities to track markets daily and guarantee the highest returns.

Be analytical and careful when searching for a remarketing solution and make sure you’re not only getting exactly what you need, but what is promised by the companies you interview.

Karen Billow is the national director of business development for FLD, an online vehicle remarketing company. She can be reached at