The move upgrades a system that already provides regular electronic updates on how well staff at multi-marque leasing company DaimlerChrysler Services Fleet Management (DCSFM) are meeting customer requirements. The updates – every minute – are more than just information. The company has put its money where its mouth is when it comes to hitting customer service targets.
Each department has agreed targets for anything ranging from booking in vehicles on time to answering and returning calls. If the business as a whole hits its agreed service levels, then bonuses of up to 30% of salary are available. The whole building at the Milton Keynes-based firm works together – if one department fails, then everyone fails. According to managing director Geoff Robinson, this constant focus on meeting customer needs is vital to ensuring drivers and fleet decision-makers get the service they need to run an efficient fleet operation.
He said: ‘The entire business takes ownership of the customer relationship and there is a lot more impetus.
‘Issues become everyone’s problem and that creates momentum to get things done. It means being as transparent as you can be with customers and staff and it gives us a much greater opportunity to be proactive. If I see that we are having a problem in a particular area, then that can be picked up very quickly.’
Information is vital to helping the business achieve its aims.
Throughout the building, including in refreshment areas, there are charts, graphs and guides showing updates on whether the business is meeting its service level targets. In addition, there are pictures of all the senior management team, along with their roles. There are also flat screen displays on walls which again show performance against service level targets and these are the key to live updates of the company’s performance.
Robinson said: ‘There has been quite an investment for us this year and this makes our performance visible.’
A new business process manager, Linda Williams, has joined the company to ensure that its service ambitions become a reality.
Growth aspirations as a result of the changes are expected to see the fleet increase to 60,000 vehicles from 42,000 today.
Paul Harrop, the firm’s sales and marketing director, joined in October. Most recently a member of the local board of Lombard Vehicle Management, he has, for the past 11 years, held senior sales management positions with leading players in the contract hire industry. He will head up a team of about 35 people.
He said: ‘It is all about reliability. The way we look after drivers is key.’ Robinson added: ‘With different departments now becoming involved in fleet, they are looking for reassurance.
‘There is a need to see in a tangible way that drivers are receiving good service and we can deliver that to them. We have won business off the back of that approach.
‘There is also the positive support of the DaimlerChrysler brand which is all about service and quality of delivery.
‘There is a positive value in this association, particularly because our brand spreads so far across Europe and worldwide.’
In total, DaimlerChrysler Services has about 250,000 vehicles under management worldwide, backed by a new fleet management centre of competence in Berlin. To support international fleet management expansion at DCSFM, the previous UK sales and marketing director, Rael Winetroube, moved to the group’s Berlin office in October. Winetroube heads up the management of business process systems and remarketing. His remit applies both to countries where DCSFM has a presence and also to new start-up regions, ensuring consistently high standards of best practice are maintained in customer service and internal processes.
DaimlerChrysler has a global commitment to build on the significant contribution that fleet management makes to the group’s motor industry and financial services interests.
This year, the UK hosted the annual fleet management meeting for the business which attracted divisions from all over the world.
Robinson added: ‘There is a real brand value in terms of showing the service, quality and reliability that we provide. Importantly it does not reflect the product we provide as we are multi-marque.
‘At a local and international level we are able to deliver.’