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Letters to Fleet News’ editor Martyn Moore.

 

Fleet training has real benefits

I wish I could deny that the situation outlined by your correspondent (March 27) did not exist but it is, I am afraid, not an altogether rare state of affairs.

The point is: does your head of procurement or HR have relevant qualifications?

Without doubt, the personal networks established through ACFO membership will provide valuable opportunities and insights.

It is also the case that other organisations can offer fleet management training and the fleet management or contract hire provider may well offer help.

For many, however, there is a real desire to gain accredited qualifications and it is in this area that ICFM education and training has much to offer.

I fear that all too often there is a failure in many businesses to recognise the real and total costs of running a fleet.

The operation of a vehicle fleet will typically represent the second highest cost for a business.

To incur costs of £1 million, it’s only necessary for a fleet to operate 125 cars.

Even a 1% reduction in these costs will cover four or five participants on the ICFM Fast Track programme.

As well as reducing costs, we would expect a properly trained fleet manager to be able to identify appropriate actions to protect the business from the myriad of legal compliance risks.

The introductory and certificate training programmes provided by ICFM are available in a number of formats and, while the costs of tutor-facilitated programmes are of course higher, the costs for distance learning packages can be very low.

We provide a scholarship scheme which can give financial support in cases where funding is not available from an employer.

We will make more widely available a guide to better evaluating the investment in fleet management training.

RODDY GRAHAM
Chairman, ICFM

Paying our way already

In reply to LemonHop’s comments regarding taxation based upon mileage rather than emissions (April 4), I would like to remind readers that every time we re-fuel a vehicle tax is gathered for the Privy Purse.

The Government is already taxing the operator/driver on the mileage that they drive.

Whatever the total amount gathered by the various taxes placed on motorists and vehicle operators, one can be assured that only a fraction of that will be spent on the roadways and vehicular infrastructure of the nation.

Regretfully the motor vehicle has been viewed as a “cash cow” ever since Herr Benz got his prototype to work in 1885.

It was then that highway robbery began as a state venture rather than as a private finance initiative.

Charles J A Brickley

Outsourced fleet services in demand

I read with interest your story “Carmakers put faith in sales teams” (March 20) about our forecast that more headcount reductions are likely for motor manufacturers in 2008.

The writer of the article correctly stated that, while this was taking place, some manufacturers are also investing in expanded fleet sales operations.

In fact, the overall situation as we see it is quite complex.

Some manufacturers are bringing on board more fleet sales staff but others are investing heavily in outsourced fleet sales operations.

So even at some manufacturers where the headcount itself is falling, the actual resources being put into fleet sales are increasing, sometimes quite dramatically.

Indeed, we have seen a lot of activity in this area this year and are in dialogue with at least four manufacturers at the moment to provide outsourced fleet sales services.

COLIN BRUDER
Managing director, Network Automotive

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