Interviews
26 Feb 20

2019 Global Fleet Manager of the Year: “Pushing leasing companies to move towards MaaS”

The quick wins have been achieved, the low-hanging fruit has been picked. Fleet and mobility management has been professionalising at a dizzying pace. Nevertheless, Jorge Fernández, Global Category Manager Fleet, Roche, was the obvious winner for the 2019 Global Fleet Manager of the Year award.

Together with his team, Mr Fernández manages a global fleet of 14,200 vehicles.

Mr Fernández strives to provide the best company car solutions to Roche’s employees in line with the company’s green guidelines, while preparing the transition to mobility packages, electrification and connectivity.

His ambitions include a reduction in fuel consumption and emissions by 20% in 3 years, an increase in preferred vendors usage to 90% and the extension and merger of previous European and North American strategies to the rest of the world.

The jury was impressed by the excellent analysis Mr Fernández provided of the cost elements of his strategy.

“I think they liked that my presentation was based on facts,” commented Mr Fernández. “My personal professional approach is based on accuracy as I used to work as an accountant. Facts and achievements made it concrete.”

In general, how realistic is it to have a real global policy? Does it always require exceptions and specific rules for specific markets?

“The point is to have the right balance between flexibility and constraints. We have a framework that provides enough flexibility to allow a limited number of exceptions, for example in countries where none of our preferred vendors have a presence. The APAC region, for instance, remains challenging.”

“In Europe and North America, and increasingly also in Latin America, following a global policy is much easier than in other parts of the world. The big leasing companies have really starting expanding in Latin America.”

Safety is also more of an issue in Latin America and APAC. To what extent do you focus on safety in your global policy?

“It’s very difficult to define the minimum standards. The best solution we found was to determine minimum standards everyone is required to meet, no matter the country or the region, but higher national standards that may exist on the local level always prevail.”

How concrete is Roche’s move towards mobility?

“Mobility solutions will become available in some markets but I don’t think it’s going to be an abrupt or a very strong move. Mobility services will be a complement to the company car but they are not going to fully substitute the company car.”

“We are investigating these solutions locally but we are also following up with leasing companies that are trying to enter this new mobility world. Ideally, we want to have something homogeneous, which is why we’re pushing our leasing companies to move into this direction. We’re hoping to have something more than pilot projects in the next couple of years.”

Find out what you can learn from Jorge Fernández, who will be one of the speakers at the 2019 Global Fleet Conference in Rome on 27 May, where he will talk about the recipes for global fleet management success.

Authored by: Benjamin Uyttebroeck
Advertorial: