Fleet News

Honesty pays dividends at ACFO meeting

An “honesty hour” between fleets and their suppliers identified key service problems and how they can be tackled.

The Scottish regional meeting of ACFO concluded that clear communication and strong relationships were the most important qualities wanted from suppliers to build long-term business relationships.

The key qualities were identified during an open forum between fleet managers and suppliers designed to bring problems into the open.

Eddie Cassidy, area fleet manager for Volkswagen Fleet Services, chaired the discussion,

Although a range of specific issues were identified, the common link was the need to work more closely together, delegates agreed.

Some manufacturers and dealers needed to take their fleet customers more seriously, the meeting heard, with a dedicated fleet department needed if they dealt with the industry.

Some leasing companies failed to be proactive and didn’t communicate staffing changes effectively, members said.

The use of voicemail was widely criticised, while sending large attachments by email also raised hackles. But the biggest message from the discussion was the need for clear communication and partnership.

Fleets had to make time to meet their suppliers or help them understand why they weren’t being seen and suppliers had to be proactive with fleets.

Fleet quotes

  • “Some retailers don’t seem to want to build relationships.”

  • ”Some manufacturers seem disinterested in you and others needs. They are picky about who they will visit.”

  • “There is a lack of follow through with contract hire companies. They are not always proactive.”

  • “Time constraints for suppliers and fleets make building relationships difficult.”

  • “Voicemail is used to avoid calls, not monitor them.”

  • “Prospecting emails contain too much. Don’t send 1MB attachments.”

  • “There is a lack of communication about who does what in some suppliers.”

  • “It is very frustrating when people leave and you aren’t told.”
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