Fleet Management talks at Global Fleet Conference - AGCO, IBM, General Mills
Knowing how to best manage your regional or global fleet often requires listening to others who have already learned from their experiences, something that attendees of the 2019 Global Fleet Conference in Miami got a taste of during the three-day event.
A total of three global fleet manager case studies were featured on day two. The first was presented by Ralf Wessel who is manager of global security and global fleet & corporate facilities for the AGCO Corporation.
He presented real-world guidelines on how to develop a comprehensive global acquisition plan and highlighted ways to create a strategy that is objective, manageable, and cost-effective.
During his presentation, Mr. Wessel stressed the importance of being open minded and understanding the differences and needs of each individual country. The meaning of a company car differs per region.
When acquiring cars, limit brands to reduce acquisition cost and increase total purchasing volume when possible. Lower CO2 emission to take advantage of tax incentives.
The benefits of leasing are lower overall monthly cost versus buying, using the existing reporting structure into your accounting, dealing with just one monthly payment, and 24/7 driver support.
The global fleet manager ended by stating the importance of planning, patience, developing good partnerships (internal and external), continuous benchmarking, and challenging the status quo.
Ralf Wessel (source: Global Fleet)
Case study two was presented by General Mills global fleet services manager Adam Orth who highlighted the processes and steps a company should take to align and implement fleet strategy on a global scale.
Besides managing fleet spend as well as data and documentation, Mr. Orth discussed procurement through fleet management companies and OEMs, explaining that you first need to determine who controls the spends and how (via capital purchase or financed) and what contracts are currently in place.
Regarding acquisition from fleet management companies, an RFI is a comprehensive way to obtain data. By this, you can determine who can support the footprint you seek and actually provide a global contract with a support team which is able to consolidate your data.
In terms of OEM engagement, fleet managers must determine how to narrow in on a selector and this includes seeking incentives (monetary or percentage) and evaluating options such as Petrol vs Diesel and Sales vs Comp. Looking at the local policy and discovering why current models are being used today are also key.
The global fleet manager also highlighted that no global journey is the same and that journeys are on-going. Make sure to run in parallel to save time, utilize vendor knowledge, and stay connected to the industry and trends
Adam Orth (source: Global Fleet)
Finally, Ferenc Hegedus who is the global lead for car lease, rental & ground transportation for IBM, talked a bit about vehicle fleet policy, local implementation, the company’s green approach, as well as safety and mobility.
Due to multiple data sources coming in with different formats, one of the challenges to tackle when managing cars on a global scale are dealing with the lack of a centralized data repository.
Other challenges to overcome, according to Mr. Hegedus, are maximizing your leveraged negotiating power, ensuring car policy compliance, and managing your environmental footprint.
When selecting a supplier, price is of concern for IBM. However, other factors such as the quality of management systems and reporting are key. As for driver behavior, this is treated on a country level with individual level measurement and decision making.
Regarding the environment, CO2 limits are set up first to determine which makes/models can be chosen from manufacturers. Depending on the country, alternatives such as hybrid PHEV, and BEV are considered.
Mr. Hegedus, who is a recent winner of the Fleet Europe Fleet Innovation Award, operates a global fleet of 20,275 vehicles. They are predominantly benefit fleet, paid for by HR & the employee, with outsourced fleet management.
Ferenc Hegedus (source: Global Fleet)