And the majority of company car drivers (70%) would expect an increase in their pay to compensate them if they lost the use of a company provided vehicle.
The study of 440 drivers, carried out by Isis Mori on behalf of the UK’s biggest leasing company, Lex, found that one in five people (22%) would resign if that happened.
Younger employees and heavy car users were more likely to look for new jobs – 30% of drivers under the age of 35 and 38% of drivers who spend more than three hours a day behind the wheel on company business would look for another one that offers a car.
Fewer than one in 10 respondents said they would feel no impact from the loss of the company car, a finding that demonstrates the value employees place on company vehicles.
Three-quarters of those quizzed cited not having to organise insurance, tax or servicing as the best thing about having a company car while two-thirds said the main benefit was the lack of the financial burden of having to run their own car.
Lex managing director Jon Walden said: ‘Company cars are still an important element in attracting and retaining loyal employees. Remove the car and you’ll pay heavily as a business. In recent years, the myth has arisen that company cars are perhaps not as desirable as they once were.
‘However, this research shows how much people appreciate their cars – to the extent of quitting if the vehicle was taken away in some cases. Most firms can’t afford to have a fifth of their employees walk out, so they need to be aware of the importance potential recruits place on a vehicle as part of the salary package.’
A report issued at the end of last year by financial services giant Deloitte revealed how the company car will make a major comeback over the next few years.
Entitled Goodbye Company Car? the report found that duty-of-care concerns and Government measures to increase the attractiveness of the company car as a perk would help fuel its popularity (Fleet News, December 14, 2005).