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No "one size fits all" fleet formula, find FIAG workshop

That is the view of Geoffrey Bray, a fleet industry veteran of 50 years and chairman of the newly-launched Fleet Industry Advisory Group (FIAG), which is dedicated to developing and sharing best practice among fleet decision-makers while simultaneously raising money for the national Hope for Tomorrow charity. 

He told more than 50 delegates at FIAG’s launch workshop entitled ‘Experience – Driving Change’ held at the Arnold Clark Group’s GTG Training Academy, Bearing Drive, Wolverhampton: ‘Fleet managers should challenge the status quo and look at how vehicles are currently being managed and perhaps do it somewhat differently. 

‘Everyone should have a quest when they are managing cars, vans, trucks and plant and search for the Holy Grail.’ 

Billing FIAG as a ‘family of fleet professionals’ with a wealth of fleet experience and unbiased advice available, Bray said: ‘There is no one size fits all approach to fleet management policy. There is no right or wrong way. 

‘A policy is right if it satisfies the operational objectives delivering a cost efficient fleet operation. 

‘The demands on all fleet decision-makers have changed and continue to change over the 50 years that I have been involved in the fleet industry. Fleet managers must continue to become smarter and better at what they do. For the beginner managing a fleet looks extremely complicated. 

‘But once those newcomers have defined what their objective is they can instigate a plan.’ 

Explaining that he wanted FIAG to become the “go to” organisation for fleet decision-makers in terms of policy advice and information, Bray said: ‘If you want to stand out as a fleet manager you have to be bold and stick to your beliefs and principles. 

‘Too often I have seen cop-out management and have seen a fleet policy compiled as a result of consensus management. That results in a fleet policy in which no-one really believes, but to which no-one objects. A consensus fleet policy exists in many organisations – it is the easy option.’ 

He concluded: ‘Everything in fleet continues to change and fleets and fleet managers must change accordingly and face the consequences. The status quo must be loosened; possible solutions explored; new initiatives implemented and decisions justified.’

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.