Fleet News

The modern fuel card: a tool for all occasions

Mileage capture as part of a ‘consolidated’ mix is an increasingly prevalent phenomenon. 

Earlier this year, BP Fuel Cards added a mileage capture system to its card which uses GPS technology to track a journey’s start and finish points to within a few metres.

Drivers simply plug in the GPS dongle to their car or van’s cigarette lighter or USB socket and, once their shift concludes, they can upload and log a full record of their journey.

“The mileage capture system makes life much easier for our fuel card customers,” says BP fuel cards marketing manager James Fields-Davis. 

“The system simultaneously saves drivers’ and managers’ time by reducing the need to manually complete and check journey records.”

“It gives customers more control over their costs and is a more tax-efficient means of running driver schemes because it helps show HMRC compliance and it’s easy  to implement.”

The Barclaycard Fuel+ card  also includes a sophisticated mileage capture and audit system. 

“These features can help fleet managers track drivers’ habits over time and also ensure business mileage is being logged accurately,” says John Bostock, account development director at Barclaycard.

“The technology means that it is easier to spot a potential over-claim, or identify maverick spend on an account where the card may have been stolen or misused.

“If required, the card can be blocked or cancelled straight away to prevent further misuse.”

TMC’s Jackson adds that fleets increasingly want the information that’s made available to be consolidated.

 “They want us to combine data from telematics, expenses and non-fuel purchases made with fuel cards,” he says. “The level of information is immensely valuable to them, not only for managing current costs and activity but also when they are developing future strategies around mobility and sustainability.”

 “Some companies just want a simple fuel card and that’s fine,” adds Bridgen. “But others are seeing the real cost and time saving benefits of using their fuel card as a mobility solution for these many additional services.”

CASE STUDY: AVONLINE AND FUELGENIE

Broadband to solar energy provider Avonline is actively monitoring the fuel efficiency of its fleet vehicles after introducing FuelGenie’s fuel card.

The Bristol-based business offers  a diverse range of services nationally, from flooring to broadband and solar energy installation – and a lot more besides.

It recently introduced the FuelGenie fuel card  across its fleet of 70 cars and vans and Alan Thatcher, Avonline’s fleet and facilities manager, has quickly realised the benefits of being able to monitor fuel data online through the customer portal.

 “Through this regular analysis I can access mileage reports, track fuel spend and analyse company fuel wastage,” he says. “I can also monitor a vehicle’s performance based on fuel consumption, which is handy information when it comes to renewing.”

Claire Alderson, sales and marketing manager  at FuelGenie, also sees benefits. “Fleet managers  can use the data to advise the best route options, recommend cheaper places to fill up like supermarket forecourts as well as monitoring vehicle performance based on fuel consumption,” she says.

“This information can also help signal when fleet vehicles need replacing and highlight the best vehicle models based on fuel efficiency.”

CASE STUDY: CHIVAS BROTHERS AND BARCLAYCARD FUEL+

Drinks company Chivas Brothers recently rolled out the Barclaycard Fuel+ card to a group of its drivers across the UK.

The Scotch whisky and premium gin manufacturer wanted a supplier which would streamline its fuel expense process while providing greater convenience to drivers.

The card – powered by Visa – means that drivers are now never out of pocket while waiting to be  reimbursed. Its chip and pin technology saves time  as users can pay at the pump whenever possible.

Tristan Campbell, fleet adviser at Chivas, says that the card’s detailed tracking and reporting system has also brought additional benefits.

Instead of drivers paying for their fuel and claiming back the costs – as was previously the case – the system enables drivers’ work-related miles to be captured on their fuel cards.

This allows the company to deduct the correct amount from the drivers’ wages at the end of the month for the personal miles they have travelled.

As a consequence, Campbell has also noticed that drivers are now increasingly likely to shop around for best-value fuel.

“Barclaycard and TMC have enabled us to drive costs out of business travel and achieve more accurate and transparent reporting,” he says.
“Barclaycard Fuel+ has also brought with it a  host of benefits for our drivers such as the chip and pin facility.”

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