How to Save Time and Money on Your IFTA Reporting
Maintaining International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) records and compliance for a large fleet can take time and effort. Failure to do so, however, may result in fines, audits, and even having your IFTA license revoked. So how does your fleet reduce the workload of IFTA reporting while increasing the accuracy of your tracking and reporting?
New technologies specifically developed to simplify IFTA tracking and reporting for more accurate metrics make a big difference in your drivers’ and back-office team’s daily tasks. Using automation tools for IFTA compliance streamlines the process, ensuring your fleet remains compliant and ready for any audit.
What is the IFTA?
The International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) is a contract between the 48 contiguous United States and Canadian provinces, created to simplify fuel use reporting for fleets operating in more than one jurisdiction. The IFTA conducts audits every three months—including various random selections—so keeping clean, detailed records reduces your risk of being audited and helps streamline the process if you’re chosen.
How Automation Tools Save Time and Money in IFTA Reporting
Fleet managers can reduce the hassle and busywork of IFTA requirements by using automation tools that make tracking and reporting more efficient for everyone, from the driver’s cab to the back office. These tools offer a range of benefits to fleets, including:
- Easier and more accurate record-keeping that eliminates missing, illegible, or late paperwork
- Reduced erroneous or falsified data since the information comes directly from recording devices
- The ability to achieve 100% compliance with IFTA requirements, reducing the risk of an audit
- Increased insights into fuel usage and consumption for a more efficient and profitable business
- A more integrated and streamlined process that reduces the workload for your employees, improving job satisfaction and retention
Examples of IFTA Tools for Fleets
The number one weapon against IFTA audits is high-quality, scrupulously maintained records. Fortunately, modern app developers have created automation tools that make this easier than ever. If you’re ever selected for an audit, well-maintained and easily accessible IFTA records will help you move through the process with minimal disruption.
Fleet management system tools featuring a partner ecosystem often offer add-on apps to help fleets customize their operations for specific goals, including improved IFTA compliance. Here are some examples:
- Automatic report templates: A library of popular and most-used report options—including bulk fuel reports, mileage listings, trip count, IFT tax reports, IFTA audit reports, and more—are automatically populated for easier data access
- ELD integration: Apps that tap directly into your electronic logging devices (ELDs) increase your record accuracy, eliminating the need for manual data entry and reducing the chances of inaccurate, missing, or false records
- Route tracking: Automatic tracking of your fleet’s routes—including GPS data—makes it easy for your system to determine miles by state and generate appropriate road-use tax forms each month or quarter
- Fuel card integration: Track your fuel purchase data with greater accuracy by tapping into your fuel card provider system, assigning data to specific trips for IRP percentage calculation, and creating State/Provincial IFTA and Mile Tax reports
- Increased business operations insight: Uncover additional insights—such as more HOS and route data—from these automated tools to improve and optimize your fleet’s operations
Platform Science and IFTA-Focused Partner Add-ons
As part of its commitment to customer success, Platform Science maintains a partner ecosystem with a variety of app developers, empowering fleets to choose partner apps proven to integrate seamlessly with its fleet management system. Many of these add-on apps are specifically designed to improve IFTA compliance and reporting, such as:
- J.J. Keller IFTA IRP Reporting: Keeps your company compliant with complex motor carrier tax and registration requirements, state IFTA and IRP requirements, and fuel tax reporting obligations while helping reduce your audit risk. Ensure your vehicles are legal while improving the accuracy and integrity of your fuel and mileage tax data.
- VUSION Full Service Fuel Tax Reporting: Brings together GPS, ECM odometer readings, and fuel purchase data, taking IFTA and road-use tax returns off your hands and eliminating compliance headaches. Sophisticated algorithms combined with industry expertise facilitate data scrubbing to deliver the most accurate reporting with the least amount of work.
- ProMiles Automated Fuel Tax Reporting: Uses ELD and GPS data to build pre-audit, compliant trip routes and records. Trips are loaded into a web-based portal for users to review, modify, and save. ProMiles imports all required fuel purchase data from the fuel card provider, assigns trip data to calculate IRP percentages, and creates State/Provincial IFTA and Mile Tax reports.
Taking advantage of IFTA-specialized tools enables fleets like yours to reduce audit risks while ensuring data is accurate and reliable. Cleaner data leads to greater operational efficiency, and leveraging new tracking technologies lightens the load for everyone on your team.