SMEs more likely to neglect duty of care
When it comes to risk management and duty of care, many small fleet operators have failed to recognise the importance of these issues compared to their larger counterparts. Just over three in five (63%) see the significance of duty of care, a marked difference from the three-quarters (76%) of larger fleets that deem this important. Furthermore, a little over half of smaller fleet managers (56%) are actively taking action to ensure they have a risk management programme, in comparison to seven in ten (70%) of larger fleets who already have a solution.
The study has also shown that just one third of operators (33%) looking after fleets of under 100 vehicles currently consider driver training to be important – in contrast to one in two (50%) managers of fleets sized with more than 100 vehicles. In addition, less than three in ten (27%) small fleets actively have a solution in place to train their drivers, and one quarter (25%) have no concrete plans to ensure that their drivers are sufficiently trained in the future. This is in comparison to nearly three in five (57%) of larger fleets already having a driver training scheme in operation, while only one in seven (13%) have neither a solution nor plans in place.
Gary Killeen, UK fleet commercial leader, GE Capital Fleet Services, said: 'It is somewhat alarming to see the failure by many small fleet operators to recognise the value of duty of care and driver training. While times are tight for many companies, safety, training and ultimate duty of care should be of the highest priority. What’s more, at a time when financial considerations are to the fore, an effective duty of care programme can be as much about delivering cost savings as it is about health and safety.'