Our top tips for effective grey fleet management
Grey fleet is an important aspect of any business, but sometimes it can be overlooked when compared to company cars. Grey fleets consist of employee-owned vehicles that are driven for work purposes, so there’s often a lot for a business to consider.
That’s why this month we wanted to explore some of our top tips for effective grey fleet management. Hopefully you’ll find this guide useful, especially if you’re just starting out in a fleet management role.
Before we start
There are a few things that you need to bear in mind if you’re managing a grey fleet within your own organisation:
- You need to consider the implications that come with a breach to the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007.
- All organisations that run company car schemes need to have a clear grey fleet policy in place, which employees should be able to access
- You can help reduce grey fleet risk by removing, or minimising, financial incentives (i.e. inflated mileage reimbursements), since this may make the use of a personal car for company use less attractive
Measure grey fleet usage
If your organisation is large, then chances are that employees will sometimes have to use their personal cars as part of a grey fleet. One of the first steps you should take is to establish how and why employees are using their personal vehicles.
Finding this information helps to increase employee safety, whilst still reducing your reimbursement costs and ensuring that you adhere to Health and Safety guidelines.
At the same time, it helps you to establish which routes employees are regularly taking and whether you could supply a shorter, more fuel-effective alternative.
Develop and implement a policy
Employers who operate a grey fleet need to have a clear policy set in place before any new employees start using their personal car for business purposes.
Ideally, the policy must clearly state who’s going to be responsible for checking that existing and new employees comply with the policy, including how they will be reimbursed for mileage.
There should be clear guidelines on what an employee must do before they are able to use their personal car, such as ensuring their vehicle is fit for purpose, they have adequate business insurance or they have no points on their license.
Evaluating vehicle safety
When it comes to a grey fleet, many employee-owned vehicles are older than their company car alternatives. This means that they may lack certain modern safety equipment and won’t be as fuel-efficient.
According to a report by the BVRLA, the average age of vehicles within a grey fleet is 8.2 years and that grey fleet vehicles have significantly lower Euro NCAP (European car safety assessment) ratings compared to other fleet vehicles.
Another way to effectively manage a grey fleet is to set out the safety requirements within your grey fleet policy, along with guidelines on how often these vehicles should be serviced and checked.
Utilise telematics to reduce costs
When it comes to effective grey fleet management, one of the important factors that most businesses take into account is the overall cost of their fleet. By utilising telematics, fleet managers are able to identify areas for potential savings, whilst also narrowing down on bad driving habits.
Once this data has been collected, the fleet manager will be able to suggest additional training, updates to the company driving policy and also find more cost-effective travel solutions. These could include video-conferencing instead of driving to meetings, car share schemes and much more.
Communicate with drivers
When it comes to effective grey fleet management, one of the best ways to ensure that all drivers are compliant with your policy is regular communication.
This may be slightly harder compared to when they’re driving company cars, but as long as an organisation is showing that they have taken all the appropriate steps to ensure drivers are safe, then it’s a step in the right direction.
So there we have it, some of our top tips for effective grey fleet management. There’s a lot to take in, but if processes and policies are implemented from the outset, a fleet managers job will become a lot easier.
What do you think? Are there any policies or steps that you think we’ve missed out? We’d love to hear your thoughts, so make sure you let us know in the comments below. Alternatively, join the conversation on our Facebook and Twitter pages.
Remember, if you or your organisation is looking to expand your fleet, or want further advice on fleet management, then our team of specialists are here to help. Get in touch with us today and let our team guide you in the right direction.