Fleet News

Clean fleets can ‘alienate’ drivers

Fleets attempting to go green risk alienating drivers and other internal departments with badly thought-out strategies, experts have warned.

And companies looking to increase their environmental credentials are urged to look further than just what type of cars are on their choice lists.

The call from Lex Momentum, the fleet consultancy arm of Lex, comes just a week after the result of a poll carried out on 800 fleets found environmental concerns have overtaken duty of care as the top consideration when making fleet decisions.

The survey by GE Commercial Finance, Fleet Services found that 94% of fleets see green issues as their top consideration (Fleet News May 3).

Lex Momentum bosses say that adding petrol-electric hybrids to the choice list and banning large engine gas guzzlers are two considerations, but companies should look at the wider implications for the organisations.

Sounding a note of caution, associate director John Webb said companies need to look at green issues, but not at the expense of employee morale.

He said: “Any modern day fleet policies should have a link to a wider corporate social responsibility strategy which includes a range of measures aimed to reduce the impact that drivers and their vehicles have on the local environment, including parking and congestion as well as overall fleet emissions.”

Department buy-in is crucial, but one department often overlooked when adopting a new more environmentally friendly fleet strategy is human resources, Mr Webb added.

He said some employees in competitive industries join a company based on the company car. Any green fleet review should bear this in mind as it could lead to staff going elsewhere because of overly restrictive policy changes.

Mr Webb added: “It might be that instead of a petrol Golf GTI you add the diesel Golf GTI to the car choice list which has lower emissions and benefit-in-kind tax.

That way you still reduce emissions and reduce the risk of losing an employee to a competitor.”

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