Reducing fleet costs by 20%
Effective Fleet Management enabled a reduction of 49% in business mileage and a 20% reduction in fleet costs.
CBVC solutions help cut Stone Group’s spend – fleet costs reduced 20% over 15 months
There’s money to be saved by bringing in a fleet management specialist like CBVC – not just for the company but for employees too, as proven by the case of IT specialists Stone Group whose benefits have included halving business mileage in fleet costs reduced 20% over 15 months.
Sotos Constantinides, finance director of the Stafford-based group, conceded that perhaps his business could have moved faster to change but rationalising an 80-vehicle company car fleet and a fuel card system were very emotive subjects.
He says: “Having CBVC helping us manage this through trialling and sampling of vehicles, and demonstrating lower emissions and low mileage employee savings in tax, was invaluable in staff acceptance and buying into the changes.
“We have seen the benefits through reduced direct and indirect costs and, critically, management time in managing the fleet, and we wouldn’t have been able to do it without CBVC who look after our vans too.”
Stone Group supplies IT services including hardware with five-year warranty and maintenance to the public sector – primarily desktop computers, mobiles, and infrastructure services as well as recycling and data destruction.
Sotos has been with Stone Group for four years, and inherited a CBVC fleet management arrangement. “For reasons on our side the fleet was not straightforward and easy to manage, with a mixture of brands and model levels and lots of fuel cards,” he explained.
“We sat down to rationalise and set down who could have what, with directors having set limits to lease rates with maintenance.
“For the rest of the cars we decided the staff could choose but the final choice would be the same for everyone to keep operations simple. CBVC were with us at every step, arranging demonstrators of various models so that employees could see what they were like to live with.
“The managers and senior sales all agreed on the Ford Mondeo, with satnav.
“Then the engineers had their choice – they needed an estate, compact for city access, nippy and reliable to meet the 98% next-day fix demands of their job.
“And they all went for Ford Focus estate with satnav – they loved it over their old Golfs.
“So we had an all-Ford fleet which made it better to negotiate on price.
“They’re all black, with the company logo, and low CO2 so it keeps down the tax.”
Not everyone got a new company car – when the benefit in kind taxes were examined, some – especially those on low mileage with a short commute – appreciated that they’d be better off taking the preference to buy their own cars.
And then those fuel cards.
Said Sotos: “They were a problem – you’re charged for the card and then you’re charged for every transaction.
“Also those with the cards tend not to be as selective in the price of fuel when choosing a filling station or pump, such as on the motorway, and also are liable not to drive in as economical and environmentally friendly way as they would when spending their own money!
“So, again with CBVC advising, we reduced the number of cards to directors, certain managers and higher mileage drivers like the engineers who travel long distances and can be called out at all hours.
“The others are paid a mileage rate, some with expense floats, and reimbursed two-weekly.”
It doesn’t stop there – the majority of vehicles have tracker units which can be used to monitor both mileage and driver behaviour, again encouraging more economical motoring.
Sotos said: “Aggressive driving and driver incidents bring driver training funded by our insurer, with assessments either online or one-to-one in the vehicle.”
And it pays dividends. “In 12 months we’ve cut our business miles by 49%, which in turn cuts our costs and our carbon footprint, enhancing our environmental credentials.
“And we wouldn’t have got here without CBVC.”