Battery & Charging Management for Your Electric Vehicle Fleet

Electric Vehicle Fleet Charging Management

Electric Vehicle Fleet Charging Management

The shift toward electric vehicles is now in full swing. Today, businesses are pivoting to electric vehicles in their fleets, and fully electric vehicles and charging stations are popping up across the country.

Why Have an Electric Fleet?

From being more fuel efficient to social responsibility, there are numerous benefits to having and adding electric vehicles into your fleet. Electric fleets can also help save money. For many fleets, if they haven’t started the electrification process, it’s now a question of “when” and not “if”. Here a just a few benefits:

  • Environmental Benefits – Electric vehicles (EVs) are more energy efficient than internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles. EVs emit no tailpipe emissions and can help lower a company’s carbon footprint.
  • Social Responsibility – Both customers and employees will appreciate your contribution to reducing tail pipe emissions and pollution. You may also be getting ahead of local or federal mandates around fleet emissions.
  • Cost Savings – Electric vehicles can save fleet fuel costs, maintenance costs, and more. There are numerous local and federal government incentives for electric vehicles, like the Qualified Plug-In Electric Vehicle Tax Credit, which credits eligible vehicles up to $7,500 of federal income tax credits.

Types of Electric Vehicles

Electric vehicle (EV) is the umbrella term for vehicles that rely (at least partially) on battery power. There are a few types of EVs that may have multiple names, but here are the main three types:

(AEV or BEV) All-Electric Vehicle or Battery Electric Vehicle

AEVs or BEVs, as their name suggests, run on an electric motor. They use regenerative braking to charge the battery and must be charged electrically.

(HEV) Hybrid Electric Vehicle

These vehicles are powered by an internal combustion engine and an electric motor that uses batteries to run. A traditional hybrid cannot charge electrically. It’s recharged through regenerative braking and refueled with gas.

(PHEV) Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle

Plug-in electric vehicles have both an internal combustion engine and an electric motor. They can charge their battery through braking, like a regular hybrid, but have a larger battery and can be plugged in to be charged. They may also be refueled like a traditional vehicle.

Fleet Charging Service Overview

It’s important that you have an advocate to support you and your EV charging needs. Merchants Fleet is here to help with your charging needs, from setup to activation through optimization. We have a suite of services, offerings, and expertise to fully support your needs:

  • Finding Public Charging Stations
  • Access to Fuel Management Cards for charging transactions
  • Energy Management Support
  • Maintenance Support
  • Ongoing Operations
  • Remote Monitoring of Home/Office Charging Stations
  • Implementation of EV Fleet Charging Infrastructure

We encourage you to contact us with any questions or to request more information.

We can help with all of your fleet charging needs, including:

Optimizing Fleet EV Chargers

Installing charging depots on your site doesn’t have to be complicated. We, or one of our trusted vendors, will come to your location and perform a sizing estimate to see how many chargers you need. We’ll also calculate the energy requirements for the charging depots and any other logistics needed. If you have multiple locations, we can do a sizing and design visit at each site.

Deployment and Operations Support

When you’re ready to install your charging depot(s), we can support or take the lead on coordinating with installers, vendors, and other parties involved in the process. We can oversee the project and make sure your depots are ready to charge your vehicles.

Post-Deployment Maintenance and Operations 

Through a network of vendors, Merchants Fleet provides ongoing charger operations and maintenance support, as well as ongoing access to charging data to fully understand the costs and benefits of your electric fleet.

Deeper Operational Insights

Since most EVs are connected vehicles, fleets have unlimited data that can be used to optimize fleet operations. Leverage the latest in fleet technologies to reduce costs and improve productivity. We offer telematics, personal use reporting, and data management to give you the fullest picture possible of your fleet’s efficiency.

Increased Energy Efficiency

EVs generate power more efficiently than a vehicle with a combustion engine. A vehicle with a traditional engine has around 25-30% efficiency. An EV can be over 85% efficient, resulting in lower cost per mile driven.

Site Assessment

We can perform a detailed site assessment to determine the best charging management strategy for your business.

  • Analysis of Current Usage Patterns: A Merchants EV expert will conduct a thorough evaluation of your current fleet usage patterns for a benchmark.
  • Analysis of Electrical Infrastructure: Our team will work with building or site management personnel to predict the extent of required upgrades.
  • Charging Infrastructure Deployment Estimation: We will provide you with an estimation of charging installation and deployment costs.
  • Project Management of Charging Infrastructure Deployment: We will coordinate the charging infrastructure deployment, from planning to installation to deployment.
  • Maintenance, Charging, and Service Support Availability: We offer support services post-deployment to help you maximize your EV fleet productivity.

Electric Vehicle Charging Levels

There are three levels of EV charging:

Level 1

Level 1 charging stations are typically for personal use and simply plug into a standard wall outlet. It will take 24 hours or longer to fully charge an EV with a level 1 charger. Level 1 stations do not require any investment, but since they charge vehicles at a slower rate, they aren’t recommended for fleet charging.

Level 2 

Level 2 stations are the most common charging stations at workplaces, and each level 2 connector is capable of charging more than one vehicle per day. With a level 2 charging depot, EVs can charge from 0% to 100% battery capacity in approximately 10-12 hours, and much less if starting from a partial charge.

Level 2 chargers can also be installed in a home for faster charging, reliably fully charging an EV overnight.  You will also find many public charging stations are Level 2. Some Level 2 stations have multiple connectors that allow vehicles to charge simultaneously.

Merchants Electrify Fleet recommends level 2 charging stations for our clients for both home and work locations.

Level 3 – Direct Current (DC) Fast Charging 

Level 3, or DC fast charging ports, are available in some public depots. Although they can charge an EV to 80% in as little as 20 minutes of charging, this type of charging is more expensive and with daily use might degrade your vehicle’s battery more quickly.  However, DC fast charging can be used as part of a fleet strategy to alleviate charging congestion or to allow employees to charge vehicles quickly.

Types of Chargers

EV Connector Chart

Public Charging Stations

Public charging stations are found throughout the U.S. They are often found at rest stops, shopping centers, public parking garages and lots, and hotels. They may be free or charge a fee. Public stations will most likely have level 2 or 3 (DC charging) charging equipment.

There are many sources of information on where public chargers are present. Most charging companies have apps that will outline where public charging is available. Merchants will be providing this information through our TotalView platform so that end-users do not have to rely on multiple apps.

We can help you with locating charging stations on your fleet routes. Also, many EVs have a computer system that can find the closest charging station to the vehicle.

Fleets of the Future

Electric fleets are the fleets of the future. We aim to enable every business, regardless of industry, size, vertical, and location, to be able to adapt to an electric fleet. Your business may be just starting the planning process of implementing an EV fleet. Maybe your business already has started adapting your fleet and is looking for assistance to continue.

Contact an electric vehicle fleet expert to see how we can help at every step of the EV adoption journey.

Best Practices for EV Adoption

We’ve broken up the EV adoption process into five easy steps.

  • Learn
    Educate yourself and your organization about the ever-growing EV landscape. Gather resources about vehicle makes and models, technologies, and the ecosystem of industry leaders that offer support services like charging and infrastructure.
  • Align
    Ensure your organization has clear direction around how EV implementation aligns with your Environmental Social & Governance (ESG) goals, including stakeholder buy-in and executive level alignment. Make sure to identify, involve, and engage internal parties and EV evangelists throughout the company.
  • Plan
    Assess where EV adoption fits into your fleet and determine your starting point. Outline the steps to transition, including possible infrastructure enhancements, which mandates need to be met in implementation, driver training, and your ordering strategy. Define your budget, including any grants or incentives you will use to offset costs.
  • Pilot
    Implement EVs in a select portion of your fleet to learn, assess feasibility, and understand how to scale across your operations. Predetermine a pilot timeframe and direct your teams to focus on data gathering and field feedback so you can understand how your EV strategy may impact drivers, customers, and your overall business operations.
  • Adopt
    Work toward full EV adoption and integration. This includes optimizing EV performance, tracking your progress toward sustainability goal achievements, and reviewing your collected data. Remember to revisit your progress and update your EV vision regularly. EV adoption is a journey rather than a set destination, so continue to evolve and grow your efforts over time.

Merchants Fleet Adopt EV Program

Adopt EV Guide

Merchants can support all of your electric vehicle needs, from ideation to reality. We can work with you to create a tangible strategy to bring EVs and EV charging equipment to your company.


In the first step, the relevant team should perform a fleet data analytics audit. In addition to providing a baseline for future metrics, this will also help the team project cost savings and sustainability impact. This data should include vehicle types and fuel usage, applications, and data analysis of your current operations. In addition to collecting data, the team will also get idea of where to start with the EV fleet adoption process.


The team that oversees operations and infrastructure should create the company’s model, which will include vehicle recommendations, charging and energy, and sustainability and financial savings. Understanding the geographic scope of the fleet will help pick an EV that may be more cost-efficient, even if it doesn’t have the same long battery range as another model.  For example, a client in a mountainous state like Colorado will likely need an EV with lots of torque as opposed to one with the longest range.


When the first two steps are complete, you can move onto the adoption step. In this step, your company can set a timeline and next steps to move into EV fleet adoption. Fleet managers should be prepared to have an infrastructure in place, a space to park and charge the EVs, and plan trainings and best practices. Keep in mind that implementing these stages may require involvement from multiple departments and internal and external stakeholders.

Leasing and Service Options

To learn more about leasing and service options, please contact us.

How Can We Help?

If you’re interested in learning more about EV fleet charging management or have any questions, get in touch. We look forward to hearing from you.

“Since partnering with Merchants Fleet last year, their professional team members have provided excellent service and offered innovative solutions to address our unique needs.  Merchants has proven to be a top-tier fleet management company, exceeding our expectations on all levels.”

“My experience has been one of overwhelming delight. Merchants facilitates the expansion of Novus Ag business possibilities with their experienced professional staff by engaging in supporting activities. Allowing Novus Ag to lease short term vehicles while factory ordering enables us to save tens of thousands while immediately placing the employee in a high-quality truck. From permitting Novus to lease agricultural, material handling assets, to fuel and maintenance programs, we consider them a valuable partner.”

Michael Gates
Corporate Services - Fleet, Novus Ag, LLC

“Floor Coverings International is proud to partner with Merchants Fleet.  Their responsiveness and consultative approach has been beneficial to us and our franchise partners.”

Neil Daley
Director of Merchandising, Floor Coverings International

Frequently Asked Questions

What do you offer for maintenance alerts and reporting?

With TotalView, our fleet management software, you can access purchase order data and key reports. We can also set you up to receive email or text-based preventative maintenance alerts to help ensure your vehicles stay on the right track.

How large is your vendor network?

Our selection of maintenance programs includes a nationwide network of more than 45,000 preferred vendors. We also have EV specialized maintenance facilities within our vendor network to ensure your EVs are properly maintained and serviced.

What are my maintenance billing options?

We allow you to choose a pricing structure that works best for you. With our full maintenance program, you pay one fixed monthly payment, and we handle everything. The fee never changes, no matter how much we work on your fleet. Administered maintenance enables you to pay for repairs as you go. Reserve maintenance allows you to pay a fixed amount each month, and at the end of the lease term, all bills are reconciled, and the account is balanced. The final option is tailored maintenance, which is a customized solution for your fleet.

Where do my drivers go for maintenance, and what is included?

Choose from any of our 45,000+ preferred nationwide vendors, and if your vehicles are unable to leave your facility, we’ll schedule an ASE-certified technician to visit your location to service your vehicles. You can also find repair locations on-the-go with our mobile app. Plus, if you enroll in our Merchants Fleet Roadside Assistance program, your drivers have a toll-free number to call day or night in the event of a maintenance emergency. What is included will depend on your fleet maintenance program.

Why is fleet maintenance important?

Failure to properly maintain your fleet can result in serious safety and compliance problems, business downtime, loss of revenue, and high repair costs. Fleet maintenance will help keep you and your business running safely and efficiently.

Average fleet vehicles receive maintenance almost 6 times per year.

Let Merchants Fleet simplify your fleet maintenance with a customized program. Call 866.653.2737 or click below.