John O'Conner switches to contract hire with Fleet Alliance
The Hertfordshire-based company, which has grounds maintenance contracts with local authorities, education establishments, housing associations and corporate clients throughout the UK, has stipulated that all new cars can be of any make but must be below 120g/km to reduce the company's carbon footprint.
The company operates a fleet of around 250 cars and light commercial vehicles, the former for contracts managers who are responsible for contracts in their locality, while the latter are outright purchased under a solus badge arrangement with Vauxhall Motors.
By using competitive tendering for all the new vehicles coming onto the fleet, Fleet Alliance has also been able to keep the monthly rentals for the John O'Conner cars as low as possible.
Fleet Alliance works with a panel of different vehicle funders, to ensure that when a fleet client requires a new car or wants to replace an existing one, only the cheapest quote currently available on the market from its preferred suppliers is the one put forward.
At the same time, the company has switched away from carrying out the maintenance of its cars at its own workshops to using franchised dealers, although it will continue to self-maintain its light commercial fleet.
John O'Conner transport manager, Simon Redhead, explained the thinking behind the changes: 'Previously, we maintained all our cars at our workshops. But this meant managers coming in from various parts of the country and having to then take a courtesy car until their own car was ready several days later.
'This was not an efficient use of their time and so we decided to change this arrangement and switch to Fleet Alliance as our one-stop supplier for all our fleet needs.
'This now allows Fleet Alliance to schedule services on drivers' behalves in locations and at times that are convenient to them. We selected Fleet Alliance on the recommendation of our fleet consultant and they have been very prompt in answering any queries we may have,' he said.
'In the same way that we offer our clients environmental and sustainability advice, Fleet Alliance also guides us in our choice of vehicles, helping us select those with the best whole life costs and the best environmental profiles.
'In switching to cars below the 120g/km mark we have found that there is now ample choice of vehicles to select from. This has been a really tax efficient move for our drivers as it keeps their benefit in kind tax and fuel bills as low as possible,' he added.