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How to Be the CIO of Your Global Fleet Policy

In Why Company Culture is the Key to a Synergistic Global Fleet, I examined six potential pillars for your fleet culture. One pillar centers around innovation, disruption and mobility. Let’s take a deeper dive into this topic while keeping the hat of a global fleet manager.

“The rise of new mobility solutions will disrupt the fleet market…”

“People won’t be interested in a company vehicle…”

“Everything will change everywhere—tomorrow…”

Just about every day, we all hear some form of concern about the future of fleet.

Here’s the truth: Fleet is changing but at a different pace in every market. The solutions may widely differ between an urban and a rural environment and some people will embrace that innovation, while others will prefer their traditional company vehicle in the near future.

Why innovation is an important tenet of global fleet policies

Not every global fleet manager needs the skills of a chief innovation officer but if your company has a culture being at the forefront of the new trends, it will be easier to engage with a wider audience if you carry that message in your fleet or mobility policy.

This sends a message to the people you want to attract or retain that your organization is agile and forward-looking. It also positions fleet at a strategic lever within your internal organization, raising visibility for the department and facilitating its relationship with other stakeholders.

Four ways to prepare your org

As a global fleet manager, your role is to ensure local teams are organized to scout, evaluate and implement an innovative solution while staying close to the population they want to target. If this isn’t done effectively, you could have a doomsday scenario on your hands as ironically described by Yves Helven in Global Fleet.

1. Build effective teams

Like any other project, it starts with building an effective team. For the first projects, I’d advise for a small and agile taskforce of five people max, including internal and external stakeholders. The typical profiles in the team include a fleet expert, a couple representing the target group for which the mobility solution will be proposed (such as HR or worker council), finance and up to two representatives from your fleet partners.

2. Skip universal solutions 

The goal is not to find the holy grail of all mobility-disruption solutions to replace your full fleet in the next six months. It’s about finding a solution that makes sense, even for a small population, in each fiscal and geographical environment. The main objective is to have a proof of concept that works for your company. 

This can be frustrating as a global fleet manager, since you may strive to find a companywide solution. But it’s more important to implement a project with a smaller population of engaged people than having a wider solution that would attract little interest. Get the initial learnings and setbacks out of the way before taking it to a larger scale.

3. Measure success through engagement

Success is measured by how much you learn. It’s OK to kill a project after a pilot phase because it was deemed not feasible. Yet, you should have a way to capture user and stakeholder feedback.

This is where your role as global fleet manager is key. You should lead these debrief sessions with countries sharing what they have learned with each other all through the life of the projects they have initiated.

4. Partner with your fleet management company

By adopting innovation as one of your fleet pillars, you’re also sending a strong signal to your fleet partner that you’re looking at the future and you want to be involved in its innovation process.

Your partner should proactively initiate conversations about the latest trends and solutions on their roadmap at the global and local level. They should be feeding your company with new ideas and you should be considered as a potential volunteer when your fleet management partner is looking to build pilots for new solutions.

Finally, the FMC will work with you to capture the users and stakeholder feedback, making the learning curve of your countries smoother. 

Join the conversation. Email me at gbourst@wheels.com