SWITCHING FROM LOCAL TO GLOBAL
FLEET & MOBILITY OPTIMISATION THROUGH AN INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMME
If your company has been running its own sizeable fleet of company cars for several years now, you could benefit from centralised fleet management. But how do you know whether that’s really the case? And if it is, when’s the right time to switch to an international fleet solution? In my experience, fleet size is not the only issue. Where international fleet & mobility management really adds value is in a fragmented business set-up: one spread across multiple countries – or perhaps even across multiple companies and cultures – with misaligned fleet and mobility practices. International fleet and mobility management helps you to create order out of chaos by creating clarity and equality for everyone involved… thus improving efficiency and reducing your costs.
As your organisation’s international fleet continues to grow, you may wonder when it’s the right moment to switch to a centralised international mobility programme. Naturally, fleet size matters to a certain extent; most commonly, I see companies starting to centralise and/or outsource their international fleet management when their fleets reach 400-500 vehicles. But more important than fleet size is the need for a car policy that is aligned on an international scale – across at least several countries. This must be supported by a local willingness to change combined with central leadership and sponsorship.
One business impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been the rise in mergers and acquisitions (M&As) as a route to value creation and business continuation. Following a merger, the fleet and mobility set-up is initially disjointed and may no longer be ‘fit for purpose’. The new fleet may be bigger due to the incorporation of additional sites, whether nationally or internationally, or there may be a surplus of vehicles if the merger results in redundancies. Moreover, the merging companies generally have their own legacy systems, company car/mobility policies and definitions, resulting in a lack of data and transparency about the existing mobility situation. This makes it hard to measure performance in the new organisation.
Due to all these factors, a merger, acquisition or other kind of strategic business change is a logical time to develop a new international fleet & mobility programme as a way of creating order out of the chaos.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF AN INTERNATIONAL FLEET & MOBILITY PROGRAMME?
1 Cost control & reduction:
Often, the ultimate objective behind strategic business changes is to maximise profit. An international programme can contribute to that goal by improving cost control and identifying savings opportunities across the new fleet & mobility set-up. The most significant cost savings can be made by leveraging the scale of the fleet or mobility whilst decreasing the number of fleet and mobility suppliers.
2 Standardised processes:
Simplified and streamlined processes often result in lower costs and less internal demand on resources. Furthermore, standardisation and centralisation of the entire fleet and mobility structure not only makes it easier to develop a strategically aligned solution, but also enables benchmarking against industry peers.
3 Harmonised vehicle & mobility offering:
The formulation of an international company car/mobility policy based on unambiguous rules and driver guidelines for all countries ensures a minimum standard of mobility, safety and environmental impact in all local markets. It also helps the organisation to focus on its core business by relieving the local markets of the non-core activities associated with mobility management. The result is an employee offering which is in line with market needs, fit for purpose and provides the right level of mobility.
Centralisation projects are often complex, since they are fundamentally changing current processes and solutions. Therefore, it can easily take six to 12 months to implement an international solution. This depends on the fleet size and number of countries/business units involved, but also – and more importantly – on the willingness of the local organisations to change and the central leadership within the company.
At Mobility Switch we develop international fleet and/or mobility approaches and policies for multinationals, companies involved in M&As, international scale-ups and rapidly evolving start-ups that are transitioning from a local to a global approach.
If you are interested in exploring the benefits of an international fleet & mobility programme, contact us by email or telephone for more information.