The Fleet Management Ladder

The National Association of Fleet Administrators offers technicians a new avenue for professional advancement


CAFS Curriculum

Asset Management

In a very real sense, Fleet Management is asset management. Fleet assets are a subset of the real properties owned or leased by an organization. Fleet managers, like managers of those real properties, are responsible for the selection, procurement, use, care and disposal of their employer's fleet vehicle and equipment assets. Sometimes fleet managers are also responsible for nonfleet equipment and infrastructure. These assets are quite often a significant segment of a company's (or agency's) total net value and they represent a large portion of the total organizational operating expenses. How well these assets are managed can have a profound impact on the profitability of a company or cost effectiveness of a public agency.

  • Vehicle Selection & Acquisition--Vehicle acquisition and selection is the process of choosing and procuring the most appropriate vehicles or equipment for the defined needs of the organization.
  • Vehicle Remarketing & Disposal--Vehicle remarketing and disposal is the process of considering the most relevant factors and methods of removing fleet assets from the organization while maximizing the return on the investment.

Fleet Information Management

Even though many organizations have an information technology (IT) staff to assist fleet managers, there is significant value to fleet managers understanding the basic IT issues. With a general knowledge of IT, fleet managers can then intelligently interact with their support staff to solve problems and enhance IT functionality. The purpose of this module is to provide fleet managers with the tools they need to function in a data-rich, information-poor work environment by better using the technology tools available. Typical fleet organizations have an abundance of "data" stored in computer systems or published to hard copy reports sitting on the corner of a desk or in a drawer or cabinet somewhere, but very little of it is translated into usable "information" to help manage the fleet. By reviewing this material, you will be introduced to technical concepts that will enable you to use them in higher-level applications. In turn, this knowledge will allow you to utilize your fleet's "data" and harness it in useful reports that will aid in various decision-making processes.

  • Information Infrastructure--Sufficiently understand computer hardware and operating systems and communications hardware, mediums, and protocols to enable efficient gathering, storage, transmission, and use of fleet data.
  • Information Systems Selection & Implementation--Accurately determine fleet data requirements and specify, select, and implement an information management system sufficient to meet asset management and decision making needs.
  • Data Collecting & Processing--Optimize the myriad of manual and electronic data streams available to gather, organize, process, and present critical information in a meaningful format.
  • Fleet Communications--Implementation of fleet information exchange means to benefit operators, dispatchers, fleets customers, and intra-fleet functions.

Maintenance Management

Vehicle maintenance directly impacts productivity, driver satisfaction, corporate image, safety and environmental compliance, and the financial bottom line. This module's competencies will enhance understanding as well as communicating essential maintenance principals to either in-house or outsourced maintenance personnel, drivers and management.

  • Vehicle Maintenance--Maintenance management impacts all aspects of fleet management. Its decisions have the potential to affect not only the financial and safe operation of a fleet, but also the end user's productivity. The Fleet Manager must have a clear understanding of this competency to make informed decisions and recommendations.
  • Shop Operations--Operating an efficient and effective maintenance facility does not happen by chance. The knowledgeable Fleet Manager must be able to assess their operation to determine optimum staffing levels and advantageous outsourcing opportunities.
  • Environmental Issues--Environmental regulations touch all Fleet and Fleet Maintenance operations. Environmental regulation requirements ensure not only a clean and healthy environment, but also employee safety. It is the Fleet Manager's responsibility to know and adhere to these ever-changing regulations.
  • Inventory Management--A fleet maintenance operation must have professionally managed parts support to operate at peak efficiency. Inventory management is a critical contributing factor to the success of a maintenance facility.
  • Benchmarking--Benchmarking staff performance is a key function to maintain productivity and efficient maintenance operations. Benchmarking involves proper data collection, comparison, and analysis to determine performance status and standards.
  • Outsourcing--Outsourcing maintenance activities occur in most fleet maintenance operations. The decision to outsource activities depends on numerous factors, but ultimately is determined by what is most effective and efficient.

Professional Development

Fleet managers, like most professionals, need to continuously educate themselves, not simply to maintain their position but to stay ahead of the curve and demonstrate true leadership. Knowledge is an asset to be cultivated and developed. In order to manage this asset, a fleet manager must sharpen the skills of leadership and the habits of self-discipline. The Professional Development module emphasizes leadership by example, ethics, personal growth and development. Understand how to write a formal report, suitable for submitting to senior management.

  • Leadership--Leadership is the discipline of influencing and directing the performance of employees towards the achievement of organizational goals. Personal development is the concept of self-improvement through setting and achieving goals and career planning.
  • Ethics--Ethics involves the study of values and customs and covers concepts such as right and wrong, good and evil, and responsibility. Ethical decision-making assists managers in making decisions that are "right" and "good."
  • Business Writing--Business writing is the concept of properly using writing techniques and tools to communicate and disseminate information effectively through the written word.

CAFM Recertification

CAFM graduates must submit to the Recertification process every five years to maintain an active CAFM status. CAFM graduates are notified in writing of Recertification requirements a few months prior to due date. CAFM graduates must complete and return CAFM Recertification Guidelines along with $100 Recertification fee to NAFA Headquarters by formal due date to maintain the CAFM designation. While early submissions are appreciated, they will not be processed until the month recertification is due.

CAFM graduates who have reached the age of 60 or are formally retired, may submit for a Lifetime certification. Simply fill out the form below with proof of age or retirement and the Certification Board will review your request. A $ 100.00 payment is required for this recertification submission also.

Individuals who do not acquire sufficient CAFM maintenance points for recertification by formal recertification date will be notified in writing of suspension from using the CAFM designation and will no longer be recognized as a CAFM in any NAFA publication and, therefore, must resubmit to the entire certification process. Extenuating circumstances will be reviewed on an individual basis.

The Certification Board suggests that CAFM graduates keep a designated CAFM file to collect and document all professional education and community activities. You may also want to review your file and accumulated points annually to assess remaining points needed to successfully meet your Recertification requirements.

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