The Basics of Fleet Operations The Basics of Fleet Operations
small organisation the fleet is a core part of the basic business - couriers, chauffeur-drive/ rental and the like. In some cases, the fleet exists almost purely as a "remuneration enhancement" - a way to provide a form of non-cash payment, with virtually no business requirement to use the car at all.
However, for the majority of cases the fleet is used for a mix of these two extremes: an easy way to provide mobility for necessary business travel, conveniently packaged with the benefit of private use for the employee and often members of their household. These aspects have been touched on in the Part 4 of this on-line series "The Importance of an Allocation Policy".
Knowing why the organisation has decided to run a fleet helps to focus on the best way to deal with the basic elements. Whatever the blend of reasons, ALL vehicles need "management" in a number of areas, including:
- Service & Maintence
For the private buyer of new cars, these different areas are dealt with as they arise, with varying degrees of intensity and sophistication. In this retail market, personal sentiment, affluence and aptitude will drive most of the decisions about how to achieve "reasonable" results. Each area (except possibly the part-exchange process to sell an old/ buy a new car) will be dealt with individually, as conveniently and as cheaply as possible.
Most fleet new-vehicle acquisitions come through franchised dealers, such as the Volkswagen network. Similarly most disposals of ex-fleet vehicles go through auctions. Although many organisations used to run their own workshops/ garages, the vast majority of fleet cars are maintained through the franchised dealer network or independents who have achieved appropriate training and credentials to deal safely and efficiently with the complexities of the modern car or van.
In fleet terms, there is a major cost justification for dealing with all of these matters in a professional and thorough manner, not least to control costs. Because the UK fleet market has been so important for so many years, there are many different packages available to do just that, and to deal with the added dimension of many different makes, models and types of vehicle.