There’s no denying that company-provided vehicle programs are popular. Some companies prefer to have control over the vehicles driven for their business. Others like to see it as a benefit when recruiting talent. But company-provided vehicle programs also require a lot of work. Which is why many companies look to fleet management companies. Whether your company has managed a company-provided vehicle program for years or your company is new to the idea, it’s important to set expectations. What do fleet management companies do for a company? Let’s dive in.
When it comes to fleet vehicles, what do companies need to manage? There are a number of areas in company fleet ownership that require management. Let’s start with the basics.
First, there’s the purchase or lease of the vehicles themselves. Which vehicles and how many will depend on the needs of your company and its drivers. The size will also likely have an impact on the terms of the lease or purchase. While that may seem like plenty, the management really begins when your company has the vehicles.
Fuel is one of the largest expenses in fleet management. Many companies provide mobile workers with a fuel card to cover the expense of gas. This enables employees to gas up as they please. This can create leakage issues for companies offering fleet vehicles to be used as personal vehicles. Some companies implement a personal-use charge back to cover non-business use of the vehicles and fuel costs. This also requires management.
Fleet vehicles also require regular maintenance. If an employee leaves the business, the company is stuck with an idle asset on their books until someone is hired to make use of it. Additionally, if a fleet vehicle gets into an accident, the company has to see to repairs.
Fleet accidents also require management. This is an issue many companies with fleets face, and it often results in litigation. One way companies try to overcome the issues of fleet accidents is driver safety programs. This includes training, driver activity monitoring and more.
Some fleet management companies help businesses through the buying process, with maintenance and fuel, even accidents. Other fleet management companies offer services almost exclusively around driver safety. They may provide GPS tracking and safety cams, share route information and driver’s fuel receipts. That leaves the rest of the management to the company that owns the vehicles.
Fleets are the most expensive vehicle program option. While a fleet management company may help decrease some of those costs, it’s likely to remain more expensive than other options. And it’s the least flexible vehicle program available. Scaling up means purchasing more vehicles. Downsizing means either maintaining idle assets or trying to sell them off.
There are companies that require specialty vehicles. Other companies are not chained to vehicle ownership, and will find employees happy to operate personal vehicles for business purposes, provided that they are reimbursed at a fair rate. With sustained, high demand for new and used vehicles pushing prices to very high levels, there has never been a better time to get out of fleet. Find out how a FAVR program can save your company and mitigate risk.