Fleet News

Insight: 10 ways to capture mileage

Option 9: Fleet management software

How it works

Fleet management software may include a module for mileage capture. This will work in much the same way as a dedicated mileage capture system.

The price may be negotiated as part of the overall package.

Pros

If a company already has fleet management software, it is logical to incorporate mileage capture to create one integrated system, utilising its established relationship with the software provider. Data on the system may be pre-populated in the mileage capture system.

Cons

Dedicated mileage capture systems may have more sophisticated functionality such as the ability to verify mileage.

Option 10: Telematics

How it works

A telematics or tracking device is fitted to the vehicle. At the start of a journey, drivers can usually press a button to select whether it is for private or business reasons.

They will then need to log on to a web-based application/telematics software to generate a report for their expenses. At this stage they will need to input the reasons for each journey.

TomTom Business Solutions has launched an app for £6.99 that works in conjunction with its telematics device.

The app synchronises with the telematics journey data which means there is minimal input from the drivers – they simply tap in the reason for each journey.

“If it’s on your phone you update it more regularly,” says Giles Margerison, sales director at TomTom Business Solutions. “You can fill it in anywhere at any time.”

Pros

Accuracy is high, every journey is logged (if the privacy option is selected the mileage is still recorded), reduced administration for drivers and telematics offers a number of other benefits such as the ability to know how the vehicle is being driven.

Cons

Most expensive option, installation time, driver resistance to telematics, unlikely to be an option for cash allowance/grey fleet drivers and drivers may press the ‘business’ option for private journeys so this will require monitoring.

So which is best?

The right solution will be different for different companies.

It will depend on cost, what the company and drivers already have (fleet management software, fuel cards, telematics, smartphones etc) and company culture.

Several providers have started to move towards a combined approach (TMC offering an app as well as its mileage capture system, Allstar giving the option of a dongle as well as its fuel cards and TomTom offering an app that works with it telematics device) and fleets may find a combined approach works best for them.

Whichever solution is chosen, it is essential to have robust auditing procedures in place.

To find out how to perform a fleet mileage audit, go to fleetnews.co.uk/mileageaudit/



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Comments

  • Alastair kendrick - 26/02/2013 20:06

    What evidence is there of more HMRC activity and increased charges of penalties.? I am an employment tax specialist who spends his day dealing with issues. Of this sort and also a ex inspector of taxes and I see no increased activity in this area. I really feel this is being suggested by the mileage capture industry. It is of course to ensure robust systems are in existence. In experience this means tightening the controls through the existing expenses system without starting with new systems

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  • Proof - 28/02/2013 07:48

    Alastair, up until a year ago our business came from telesales and word of month. But over the last year we have had 71 new customers on the back of a HMRC audit and the first thing they looked at was Mileage records. If this does not say what the above does......
    "low hanging fruit" HMRC's words (Quote)

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  • 3 of the big 4 can confirm this - 28/02/2013 09:00

    They have also seen this over the last 12 months

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    • Alastair kendrick - 04/03/2013 07:57

      Whilst it is important that employers have proper controls in p lace and at the time of an HMRC inspection this will be reviewed it is not the case that this is an area of specific attention by HMRC. It does not feature in their list of compliance projects or indeed I n their list of issues checked at a compliance fruit. I accept the low lying fruit point

      HMRC carry out a significant number of employer compliance reviews and the % in which mileage capture is highlighted is still low. In many instances HMRC will not even if records are poor seek a financial settlement in this regard.

      It seems this being marketed well by certain organisations (including big 4) and employers need to not run scared but ensure they have robust controls in place ideally in their expenses systems

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  • John Cooley - 18/12/2014 17:19

    very useful especially with dongle but no mention of integration with account software such as SAP

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