Fleet News

Are cost cuts putting your job at risk?

A SHOCK report has found that the vast majority of fleet managers’ jobs are at risk.

It claims that companies are failing to appreciate the financial benefits of having a fleet manager for fleets of fewer than 1,000 vehicles.

The report highlights a trend that UK firms are seeking to reduce costs by outsourcing non-core activities, jeopardising the traditional role of the fleet manager.

Produced by market research company Market & Business Development, The UK Fleet Services Market Development Report says: ‘The fleet services market is one where outsourcing is expected to become increasingly commonplace, with the share of in-house managers continuing to decline.

‘This can be attributed to the general trend to contract out non-core services by companies that are increasingly looking to operate cost-effectively by removing costs involved in the acquisition and management of company cars, as the real benefits of employing a fleet manager are usually gained only with fleets in excess of 1,000 vehicles.’

Industry experts have reacted with dismay at the lack of understanding of the fleet manager’s role.

A spokesman for fleet operators’ association ACFO said: ‘Even for a fleet of 80 vehicles, the benefits of having someone who knows what they are doing to ensure the fleet is safe and running properly and who can get the right deals to achieve cost savings are immense.

‘It’s also important to remember that most fleets have fewer than 1,000 vehicles, so it’s talking about the majority of managers here.’

Fleet management consultant Colin Tourick said: ‘A fleet of 1,000 vehicles might cost £5 million a year to operate.

‘Most boards would consider it worthwhile appointing a dedicated manager to look after far lower levels of expenditure than this, which suggests the ‘cut-off’ point for an in-house fleet manager should be well below this.’

A spokesman for the report authors said the view was sourced from company interviews and is not their own opinion.

For a copy of the report, which costs £550 for a single copy or £660 for an annual subscription consisting of four reports, visit www.mbdltd.co.uk or telephone 0161 236 6845.

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