Keith Scolan, ITW: EVs, Driver safety are key to sustainability
Founded in 1912, US-based industrial manufacturer ITW (Illinois Tool Works Inc.) is a Fortune 200 company (NYSE: ITW) providing products and solutions at work around the globe.
Based out of Glenview Illinois, it supports the spaces in which we live and work, including the cars we drive, and the mobile devices we rely on, something that cannot be fully accomplished without Keith Scolan, the company’s Global Fleet Manager.
Starting out his career at a car dealer and then moving on to a fleet management company, he has been in the fleet industry for over 30 years, and this April (2022) will be his 20th anniversary managing the ITW fleet. Let’s take a brief look at what Mr. Scolan has to say.
Global Fleet Manager
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While the day-to-day management of the fleet drivers is managed by the local division’s fleet administrator, Mr. Scolan is responsible for developing, implementing, and managing global vehicle fleet programs, policies, and relationships with suppliers such as fleet management companies, manufacturers, safety firms, and providers of fuel/energy, telematics, and tyres.
“Part of my responsibility is to establish and maintain the vehicle policy in each country. Our country policies are vehicle specific, meaning model, trim level, powertrain, other options, and lease terms,” says the Global Fleet Manager.
Fleet van of ITW subsidiary Avery Weigh-Tronix (courtesy of ITW)
ITW operations are organized by seven segments: Automotive OEM; Food Equipment; Test & Measurement and Electronics; Welding; Polymers & Fluids; Construction Products; and Specialty Products. Owing to this, the company has a variety of vehicle requirements. Although most of its fleet is made up of light commercial vehicles (LCV), it varies by country.
As we all know, sustainability is a popular buzzword today. And although it primarily means having a positive impact on the environment, it should also have a positive economic result on company operations. According to Mr. Scolan, these are some of the things ITW is doing to improve sustainability.
- Implement programs to lower CO2 thresholds
- Encourage the take-up of electric vehicles (EV)
- Provide driver safety courses with specific modules
- One module of which is Efficient Driving
- Another module is aimed at Reducing Unnecessary Idling.
“In a few of the country’s ITW operates in, more than half of the available vehicles which can be selected are now battery electric vehicles (BEV),” says Mr. Scolan.
Besides the overall implementation of EVs and dealing with fuel price increases, the main challenge ITW is facing in North America (which makes up 52% of the company’s revenue) is pretty much the same around the world, according to Mr. Scolan which highlighted the vehicle shortage issue.
To tackle the issue, “we have had to focus more on moving vehicles between the drivers and we have had to extend our vehicle usage times. And if we can place an order, we are doing this much earlier than usual,” says the Global Fleet Manager.
For more on what to expect in terms of fleet and mobility in 2022, including a list of some of the most sought after electric vehicles (EV) for the year, download Global Fleet's latest e-book on the matter.
Photo: Keith Scolan (source: handout)