Fleet News

Insight: Corporate social responsibility

Case study: Balfour Beatty Fleet Services

Balfour Beatty wants to take a lead role in sustainability, set out in its ‘2020 Vision’.

The vision has three main areas of focus: profitable markets, healthy communities and environmental limits.

Within ‘healthy communities’ is Balfour Beatty’s commitment to ‘Zero Harm’ – no seriously disabling injuries, no long-term harm to health and no fatalities to the Balfour Beatty workforce, sub-contractors or the public.

Balfour Beatty Fleet Services (BBFS) has not had a reportable accident since January 2011, in line with Zero Harm.

It has a comprehensive risk management programme which includes online driver risk assessments (based on psychometric principals), driver training and specifying safety features on its vehicles.

Low and medium risk drivers take a workshop while high risk drivers have a full-day’s training (a combination of classroom-based and on-the-road activity).

There is also a wide range of simulator courses which are targeted at different groups, such as young drivers.

But the training extends beyond BBFS employees.

Family members of Balfour Beatty staff can attend an evening road safety discussion with BBFS trainers.

BBFS also takes its safety message to local schools, focusing mainly on Years 11 and 12.

Andy Ormerod, managing director of BBFS, suggests that not everyone appreciates the risks associated with driving.

“Operating a large fleet means we have a deep understanding of road risk,” he says. “We want to share our knowledge of safe and efficient driving with as wide an audience as possible.”

On the environmental front, BBFS aims to reduce its fleet’s CO2 emissions year-on-year.

It has set a maximum limit of 140g/km for its company cars already and will look to drive the limit down further in 2013 achieving an average of 120g/km per grade.

It has a number of ‘sustainability vehicles’ on the choice list, including the Toyota Prius, Nissan Leaf and Vauxhall Ampera.

These are an option for all company car drivers, regardless of their normal
grade entitlement.

Ormerod believes there are commercial benefits from CSR as the company’s brand is enhanced and it can “impact whether a business wants to do business with you”.

“It gives you a competitive advantage,” he says.

However, CSR shouldn’t be done purely for commercial and growth reasons, according to Ormerod.

He adds that ultimately BBFS embraces CSR because “it feels like the right thing to do”.

CSR blog

John Catling, chief executive of FMG, argues the case for CSR in the Fleet News blog, click here to read it 

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