The importance of understanding your company’s business strategy, before setting your fleet policy was highlighted by Janet Entwistle, managing director at BT Fleet.
She gave an example of a company selecting vans which were not large enough to transport the company’s product – washing machines.
Choosing the right services was another area that Ms Entwistle said needed to be right for the business.
“Fleet managers sometimes go for the metal and don’t look at the services around it,” she said.
“Including breakdown when you purchase the vehicle might look like a cost saving on the face of it, but the costs could balloon if it’s not right for your business.”
She advised van fleet managers to take a long-term view, thinking ahead about legislative changes and whether the business may make structural changes, such as combining sales teams.
Considering the company’s risk position for funding is also important.
“Where is the risk is for your business? Is it being tied into a contract? Is it taking residual value risk?
“In the current climate, cashflow is likely to drive people down the leasing route.
"But take a long term view. It might be a good time to buy and take the RV risk yourself.”