Industry survey highlights communication shortfalls
But in terms of offering relevant products and services, the industry is succeeding, and the majority of fleet operators would recommend their contract hire and leasing provider to others, while in the last 12 months satisfaction levels have risen, the report found.
The findings, taken from the latest Fleeteye survey show that satisfaction levels are highest for the "Products and Services Provided", the "Vehicle Ordering & Delivery Process" and how contract hire and leasing companies "Delivered against their Agreements".
However, ranked lowest are "Day to Day Management of the Fleet", "Account Management" and "Communications". But when asked what their key priorities were, fleet managers ranked account management as the fourth most important ingredient of a successful supplier relationship and communication as third in importance, whereas products and services sat in eighth place, with delivering against agreements in seventh.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, value for money was ranked as the most important factor, with vehicle ordering and delivery in second place. In terms of supplier recommendations, more than 70% stated that they would refer their contract hire and leasing provider to a colleague, and overall satisfaction levels taken as an average across the fleet industry have seen an upward shift since 2009.
Rick Yarrow, managing director of Experteye, said: 'Our recent Fleeteye survey makes interesting reading because it highlights a tremendous opportunity for the contract hire and leasing sector. What it's telling us is that the industry has got its product and service provision right, but needs to focus on the softer skills of relationship building, pro- activity and customer contact.
'In a market that's widely accepted as being relatively generic, the findings outline that, while we are performing increasingly well, we need to focus harder as an industry in the areas of account management and communications, and that these areas could become key differentiators when competing for new business.'