Selecting the Right Vehicle Program Vendor: What to Look For
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Selecting the Right Vehicle Program Vendor: What to Look For

By Ben Reiland June 23, 2022

Categories: Anywhere Workforce Vehicle Reimbursement

Inflation is the highest it’s been in decades. The average price of gas is over $5. The stock market continues to tumble and recession appears to be just around the corner. In times like these, companies explore ways to control costs and scale back. One approach that doesn’t immediately come to mind is cutting vehicle program expenses. Often times that means switching vehicle programs or selecting a different vehicle program vendor. What makes a good vehicle program vendor? What should you be looking for? We’ll share those insights in this post. 

What is a vehicle program vendor? 

There are many ways a company can support a vehicle program. Some do so using internal resources. However, not every vehicle program is easy to stand up and manage internally. That’s why others outsource their programs to others with proven expertise. Vehicle program vendors help companies implement and manage their business vehicle program.  

What does a vehicle program vendor offer? 

Whether your company is establishing its first vehicle program or switching out of an old one, you want a vendor that can assess your company’s needs and match them with the right solution. For a smaller, regional company whose mobile workers never drive more than 500 miles a month, a cents-per-mile program could be the right approach. For a larger enterprise company in multiple states, a hybrid program may better serve your needs. However, change can be its own challenge. 

Consider a business with company-provided vehicles. On top of lease or ownership costs they pay for maintenance, fuel and, potentially, legal expenses. It’s no wonder fleets are the most expensive vehicle program. But the effort to replace that fleet of vehicles may seem daunting, What can a vehicle program vendor offer? 

  1. Expertise on calculating the right reimbursement rate and selecting the best program for your business 
  2. Easy implementation of the vehicle program and training on the associated technology to help you run your company’s vehicle program smoothly 
  3. An all-in-one platform 
  4. The ability to scale with your company 
  5. Customer satisfaction on the overall experience from the sales process to actually using their service 

Expertise 

Accurate vehicle reimbursement really only depends on a competent mileage tracker, right? Well, not exactly. A mileage tracker may go a long way to ensure mobile workers provide IRS compliant mileage logs. However, the right vehicle program vendor also has the expertise to calculate appropriate rates for the business. Not every mileage tracker comes with a platform with millions of datapoints that inform regional and even driver-location specific reimbursements. A top vendor should be able to calculate a fair and accurate reimbursement for each individual employee. 

Expertise also comes from decades in the mileage reimbursement space, through bull and bear markets. Expertise is providing the IRS with the data that informs the IRS mileage rate each year. And that’s not all. Expertise is also sharing that the IRS mileage rate is more of a guideline and shouldn’t be used as a rate for reimbursement. 

Selecting the right vehicle program for your business can be challenging. There are many vehicle reimbursement programs, each with pros and cons. A vehicle program vendor will help you evaluate your options and select the most appropriate one. Whether it’s a single program or a hybrid option, you should feel confident in the vehicle program you move forward with. 

When looking at potential vehicle program vendors, ask the following questions: 

  • What industries do you work with? Do you have experience with our industry? 
  • What company size do you typically work with? Can you adjust with us if we grow or downsize? 
  • What vehicle programs can you support? Can you support multiple programs with one company? 

Ease of Implementation / Use 

The right vehicle program vendor can implement an easy to use vehicle program and onboard its driving employees and administrators in a matter of hours. When it comes to vehicle programs, each business has its own pain points. Let’s look at a business with company-provided vehicles. On top of lease or ownership costs they pay for maintenance, fuel and, potentially, legal expenses. It’s no wonder fleets are the most expensive vehicle program. But the effort to replace that fleet of vehicles may be daunting. How can a vehicle program vendor help?  

The right vehicle program vendor can walk the company through each step of their transition out of fleet, implementing the new solution over the span of a couple of weeks. What’s more, that vendor should be able to ensure return on investment, IRS compliance and fair and accurate reimbursements. 

When looking at potential vehicle program vendors, ask the following questions: 

  • Can I control the costs of my mileage reimbursement with your mileage capture solution?  
  • What’s the implementation process like? How long does it take to onboard our mobile workforce? 
  • How much time can our driving employees expect to save? What about our program administrators? 

Provides an All-In-One Platform 

Companies may need more than one vehicle program. That’s far from out of the ordinary. Not every employee driving for the same company is doing the same thing. In these instances, it’s still a benefit to manage everything through the same system. The right vehicle program vendor can provide just that.  

Some vehicle program vendors may not be able to support more than one policy, or lack any insights beyond who still needs to be reimbursed. The right vendor can share reports and dashboards of data providing insight into your mobile workforce’s productivity like you’ve never seen before. This would come with training program managers on how to approve employee mileage, add/remove drivers and more from their platform. 

When looking at potential vehicle program vendors, ask the following questions: 

  • Can you support our company having two or more vehicle programs on your platform? 
  • How do you guarantee accuracy of mileage reimbursements to employees? 
  • What level of insight can I gain into the productivity of my mobile workforce?  

Scalability 

How prepared is your company for rapid expansion? Or sudden downsizing? Whether the economy is flying up or diving down, scalability is a strength. The ability to adapt swiftly to market changes makes the business a desirable company and a fierce competitor. Unfortunately, most companies have vehicle programs that lack flexibility.  

Fleet vehicles are an easy target. Growing means purchasing or leasing new vehicles. Downsizing means offloading those vehicles or maintaining them until markets improve. Unless your company is in the auto sales industry, it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. 

Car allowances are equally inflexible. Even as economies tumble and gas prices skyrocket, companies will maintain the same flat rate. That flat rate will fall short earlier and earlier, incentivizing employees as soon as that amount is up to stop driving.

Scalability is important to employers and it’s important to employees. Whether the company is growing or downsizing, it impacts both. The right vehicle program provider can ensure scalability with its solutions. Employers can control costs as needed, while employees receive fair and accurate reimbursements. 

When looking at potential vehicle program vendors, ask the following questions: 

  • How quickly could a vehicle program scale up or down? 
  • In the event of high gas prices, how long would it take to adjust reimbursement rates? 
  • In what ways can your program continue to provide fair and accurate reimbursements during a downturn? 

Customer Satisfaction 

Any vehicle program vendor can claim their product is easy to implement, user friendly and provides cost-control opportunities. But no company wants to commit to a new program only to find their new vendor has under delivered. It’s common due diligence to look through G2 and other review sites for feedback on potential vendors and even their competitors.  

It may come as no surprise that Motus is the market-leading vehicle program vendor. That’s not all. Motus has been voted by G2 users as best in class company, earning “Easiest Setup,” “Easiest Admin” and “High Performer” badges this Spring.

What should you look for when exploring potential vehicle program vendors? 

  • How does your net promoter score compare with your competitors? 
  • What companies in our industry can we use as a reference? 
  • What companies of our size can we use as a reference? 

Find the Right Vehicle Program Vendor 

In these economically uncertain times, your company has choices. Unfortunately, the wrong choice may be a costly one. In a time of cost control, avoiding the wrong choice is vital. The best way to combat this? Explore each option thoroughly. Connect with us to find out how we can help your company control costs while reimbursing your driving employees accurately. See why Motus continues to be a top choice by G2 users by booking your demo with us today! 

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