Fleets and vehicle suppliers urged to invest despite tough economic climate
That’s the New Year message from Jason Francis (Inset), managing director of fleet management software specialist, Jaama, who believes public and private sector organisations should take a leaf out of the Government’s book and invest in infrastructure and capital projects.
He said: 'Managing directors, financial directors and fleet operators must continue to plan for the long term. Although finances maybe tight with pressure on budgets, cancelling capital expenditure will ultimately prove short-sighted.'
He highlighted a number of Jaama customers that have invested heavily in new technology to improve business and fleet operating efficiency. Among contract hire, vehicle rental and fleet services companies they include Fleet Hire, Ogilvie Fleet, Riverside Truck Rental and Run Your Fleet and among fleet operators ADT Fire and Security, Cape Plc, DHL Supply Chain, British Military Fitness, piling and foundation engineers Roger Bullivant and Oxfordshire County Council.
'Jaama attracted a host of new customers in 2011 that are now benefiting from investing in our Key2 Vehicle Management software, while existing users such as MITIE and SIG have continued to work in partnership with us to further develop additional modules,' said Mr Francis.
'All of our customers are cutting fleet operating costs through the effective use of software to manage vehicles. They have realised the importance of investing in technology fit for the 21st century which will deliver significantly enhanced benefits across the business including lower operating costs and improvements in fleet administration.”
Meanwhile, leasing and rental companies are investing in sophisticated online technology to drive their businesses forward in 2012 and beyond.
'Jaama continues to work with a number of organisations that are introducing Key2 to improve vehicle management efficiency and boost driver management. The portals we have developed with the likes of Ogilvie Fleet deliver enhancements to the service they are able to offer their clients,' said Mr Francis.
He continued: 'The Government announced in its recent Autumn Statement that it was continuing to invest billions in Britain’s transport infrastructure because, despite the tough economic situation, the country cannot afford to standstill. It is the same with public and private sector organisations. Investing in technology will deliver immediate improvements to business efficiency and deliver growth opportunities now and in the future as the economy recovers.'
There are many reasons why fleet operators are investing in Key2 and chief among them is to save money – notably fuel expenditure, which is the most significant cost facing fleets after vehicle acquisition/depreciation – and to further improve occupational road risk legislative compliance.
Early in 2012 Jaama expects to launch a new version of its Electronic Driver Services (EDS) module – a risk management tool and a driver information portal within Key2. The module was initially launched to enable fleets to check employee driving licence validity, EDS was then further enhanced to enable employees who drive their own vehicles on business – the so-called "grey fleet"- to record documentation online. The new version will be extended to include salary sacrifice management and more driver choice options around vehicle selection, additional vehicle features and online ordering.
'Fleets and vehicle leasing and rental companies want drivers to be able to directly access more online solutions. The new version of EDS will do just that and will be accessible via an iPad or smartphone,' added Mr Francis.
2011 has been a busy year for Jaama, with the total number of new customer wins up on 2010. Mr Francis commented: 'At the start of 2011 we launched a "spend to save" initiative and that has proved very successful.
'Growth has been fuelled by a combination of the capability of our software, the service we offer and recognition by many organisations that they cannot rely on outdated methods to manage their vehicles and run their business.
'Most of our new business is the result of referrals from existing customers and as those customers look to increase the depth of functionality so we further develop modules and launch new solutions to the point where Jaama is leading a technology revolution,' he concluded.