SMART Goals to Help You Plan Your Upfit—Part 2

Posted by Kelly Milligan on Feb 5, 2018 9:15:32 AM
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In our last blog post, Jesse talked about the S.M.A.R.T. method of success: a way to set concrete goals with measurable objectives. If you’re planning an upfit project for your fleet, this strategy can help you get the most for your money and best meet the needs of your organization. We already discussed how planning a vehicle upfitting project for your fleet starts with setting goals that are specific and measurable. Today, I'll cover how to also make your goals attainable, relevant, and time-bound.

 Set Attainable Goals

One way people and organizations commonly sabotage their own success is by setting unattainable goals. It’s unrealistic to expect to lose 50 pounds in two months or run a three-hour marathon after six weeks of training; setting these kinds of unattainable goals is a recipe for failure and frustration. It would be fantastic to upfit your fleet with Jetsons-style flying car technology this year, but setting this goal as part of your upfit plan isn’t realistic. Similarly, you may want to upgrade every SUV, truck, and passenger vehicle in your fleet to the latest in communications technology, but you may not realistically have the time or money to do so.

Work with an experienced upfit professional to identify your needs and what upfits can be implemented to meet as many of them as possible within your budget. Keltek understands that upfitting your fleet can be a time-consuming and complicated process, but you don't have to go at it alone! We’ll help you set attainable steps along the way to work toward your goals and get you rolling in no time.

Remember: Be Relevant!

Make sure the goals you set for your upfit project are relevant to the needs and functionality of your department. You may be able to afford the latest and greatest radio communication systems, but would that provide added value for your organization? Sometimes the answer will definitely be yes, but sometimes you can save money by getting getting creative in how/where you can reallocated features and benefits of one product into another product you are already considering. Don’t sacrifice quality, however; in the long term, you may pay more to repeatedly replace lesser-quality parts in high-stress uses.

For example, a cheaper metal prisoner barrier in the rear seat of a police vehicle may be more vulnerable to compromise as it gets older due to the lighter weight of the metal structure. This could put your personnel’s safety at risk or necessitate replacing your equipment more frequently than your plans (or budget) allows.

An experienced vehicle upfitter can help you figure out the products that are best tailored to meet your needs without adding unnecessary cost to your upfit project. 

Finish Strong with Time-Bound Goals

Since your budget for upfitting and fleet costs is typically associated with all public service vehicles, try to schedule upfits as early in the year as possible. Other agencies may be comparing bids for months and then compete to find an upfitter that is able to get the work finished before the fiscal year's end to fit in the budget. Choosing a vehicle upfitter that is pre-approved for Iowa state contracts removes the need for and expense of the bidding and RFP process and allows you to get an early start on your upfit projects. This lets you schedule your upgrades and replacements for the first half of the year. Ordering a turnkey finished product early in the year expedites the the labor and installation process and gets your vehicles back on the job again quickly. Make this the year you don’t procrastinate—get your upfits done early!


Keltek is a Des Moines-area vehicle upfitter that has more than 20 years of experience offering turnkey vehicle upfitting for Iowa public service agencies, including police departments, public safety fleets, EMTs, fire departments, and more. We can help you prepare a vehicle upfit plan, choose products that fit your budget and your time constraints, and keep you on track to meet your S.M.A.R.T. goals. Contact us today for more information.

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Topics: Budgeting, Vehicle Upfitting

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