The transition will not be just about removing the person who controls the steering wheel, the gas pedal and the brake pedal from the fleet-management equation. It also is about removing the person who fuels/charges the car, cleans the car, takes cars in for maintenance, etc. How will all this be done in the era of driverless cars?
Figuring all of this out will be challenging. However, the good news is that the transition to fleet management of AVs also represents a great opportunity for fleet operators. Eventually, it will allow the industry to shift its focus from cost-savings to revenue generation.
As the market continues to rapidly change, the pressure to optimize fleet inventory will require faster and even more productive real-time insights of demand, location and analytics so business decisions can be made efficiently and quickly to maximize company assets.
Anyone wanting to be a major player while the transition to autonomy takes place needs to acknowledge the sea change as soon as possible and recognize it will have a huge effect on any fleet-based service.
Competitors, and even new players in the market will establish new levels of fleet efficiency while serving a much larger customer base that is optimistically looking forward to advanced mobility services. The transition already is under way, and companies that fail to adjust their technology today will be left on the side of the road in the AV era.