Vehicle leasing experts have put their weight behind a bid to save taxpayer cash by slashing waste in the corridors of power.
A fact-finding mission by entrepreneur businessman Sir Philip Green claims poor procurement practice accounts for a large slice of the Government’s annual £92 million bill for car rental.
Carried out at the request of Prime Minister David Cameron, his survey reveals that Whitehall departments are spending between £27 and £119 a day to rent Mondeo-size cars.
“I’m not at all surprised he found a £92 difference in daily rental fees – what is surprising is that the discrepancy wasn’t bigger.
“Our experience in this area has already shown up a serious lack of execution on the ground when it comes to managing vehicle rental and mileage allowances,” Nexus chief executive Neil McCrossan told Fleet News.
“Sir Philip’s report highlights what we have been saying for some months now. The issue relates not only to the rental difference – we estimate the Government could save 75 per cent by using readily available systems and expertise for administration.”
According to McCrossan, no overall control or co-ordination is involved in rental and private mileage allowance payments reaching “hundreds of millions of pounds” a year.
“Every arm of local and national Government, all the emergency services and the military each run their own tender exercises. This would not be allowed in a major commercial operation, so why does Government? This activity could be brought together in a single procurement exercise and accessed through a single portal to all Government users – and every rental provider could participate in this approach,” he said.
Added Automotive Leasing brand director Stuart Walker: “Getting rid of fleet vehicles in favour of private or hire cars can look good on paper but it is a false economy in the long term.
“Businesses have made substantial savings by outsourcing their fleet management to specialist providers and the public sector can learn from this experience. Local authorities such as Ashford have reaped significant benefits in this way and it’s time more Government bodies followed suit.”