FleetManagementWeekly AmeriFleet
January 23, 2018


Editor's Analysis & Top Industry News

The Keys to Customer Loyalty

We welcome back Wendy Eichenbaum to keep us on our CX and UX toes in 2018! Wendy writes the popular ‘Fleet CX Toolkit’ column and this month Wendy asks: “Would Your Customers Recommend You?” Happily, she shows us the way to improve customer loyality metrics, turn Detractors into Promoters, and hike future revenue.

For a look into the 2018 trends predicted for global fleets, catch the interview with Dr. Jörg Löffler, CEO of Munich-based Fleet Logistics. Among the key trends, Löffler talks about ramifications of the decline of the diesel-powered vehicle, long the choice for European fleets, and the rise of mobility management.

Nominations for NAFA’s prestigious FLEXY Awards have been extended until this coming Friday, January 26th . It is such an honor to be nominated (and a thrill to be a winner!). Nominations are easy. This is your last chance to put forward that special fleet professional!

Janice Sutton
Editor in Chief

Thought Leadership

Fleet Marketing – Guiding principles for fleet providers to improve marketing and increase sales.

Fleet Asset Management – Best practices for work truck management.

Globally Speaking — Perspectives on the Multinational Fleets

Customer Driven — Engage your organization to create customer loyalty, trust, and superior service

On Fleet Driver Management Solutions to improve your fleet’s accident rate and cut costs on collision repairs

Safety & Risk — Impactful driver safety and risk management tools and techniques.

The Fleet CX Toolbox – Solid steps to implementing and improving fleet customer experience.

Fleet Spectator — A 360 view of the fleet industry.

Talent Management – Smart guidelines to help you manage the talent in your workplace.

VIDEO: Build a Safety Culture, Not a Safety Program

It is critical to build a culture of safety, and to look at safety holistically.

VIDEO: Tips for New Fleet Managers

  New to Fleet? Here are Some Good Ways to Get Up to Speed.

For folks who are new to fleet, industry icon Mike Pitcher has some good advice on ways to get up to speed.

VIDEO: NAFA I&E in Anaheim

  NAFA’s 2018 I&E: Are You Ready?

NAFA’s annual Institute & Expo is the perfect opportunity to increase your networking power. I&E is the largest community of fleet professionals who attend year after year because they experience I&E’s hands-on value. Attend I&E to get real money-saving, time-saving value!

The Fleet Spot

Thoma Bravo Acquires and Merges Motus and Runzheimer

Craig Powell to Lead the Combined Organization to Better Serve $2 Billion Fleet Market

Thoma Bravo, a leading private equity investment firm announced an innovative deal to acquire the premier vehicle management and reimbursement platforms of Motus and Runzheimer.

The combined organization – with approximately 2,000 customers and more than 220,000 end users – is positioned to better serve the rapidly growing needs of the addressable fleet market and provide customers with significant alternatives to today’s “company car” or limited vehicle reimbursement options.

Read more of the release.

Donlen Named One of the Best and Brightest Companies to Work for in the Nation for the Third Consecutive Year

Donlen has been recognized by the National Association for Business Resources (NABR) for the third year in a row as one of the 2017 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For® in the Nation.

“One of the core values of Donlen is that we strive to attract and retain the best, brightest, and most engaged employees through rewarding work and exceptional career development and advancement opportunities. When employees are engaged and invested, they provide higher levels of customer satisfaction, and our clients appreciate that,” Donlen’s president Tom Callahan said. “To be recognized as one of the Best and Brightest Companies to Work For in the Nation for our efforts for the third year in a row is an honor and an affirmation for all of us at Donlen.


Fleet’s ‘Mobility Evolution’ Takes Center Stage at NAFA’s International Fleet Academy Pre-Conference

Event Just Prior to NAFA’s I&E to Provide In-Depth Exploration of Mobility Changes All Fleets Must Adopt

NAFA Fleet Management Association, the vehicle fleet industry’s largest trade association, today announces the return of the annual International Fleet Academy (IFA), taking place April 23, in Anaheim, Calif. The IFA precedes the Association’s annual conference, the NAFA Institute & Expo (I&E).

Radical change is coming in the form of vehicle sharing, greater autonomy, and an explosion of technology. The IFA will provide an engaging forum to discuss questions concerning where the fleet/mobility industry will be 10 years from now and how this rapidly evolving industry will impact North American and global fleets.


It’s High Time We Weed Out the Risks of Drugged Driving

By Art Liggio, President and CEO, Driving Dynamics

Last year Safety & Risk featured two columns: Alert the Fleet: The Other Driver Has Been Abusing Prescription Opioids and Riding High in My ’58 Ford Cortina,” both intended to raise awareness that we’re sharing the road with more and more drivers operating their vehicles with diminished capacity.

And as more states legalize the use of marijuana―most recently added was California with 38 million inhabitants representing 12 percent of our country’s population, the message of vigilance and preparedness is worth repeating.

With access to this recreational drug becoming more easily available ever day, it’s almost certain we’ll see an increase in the number of individuals operating vehicles under the influence, putting themselves and the rest of us in harm’s way.


The Fleet CX Toolkit

By Wendy Eichenbaum

According to Gartner, 80% of a company’s future revenue will come from 20% of its existing customers. Who in your customer base is part of that 20%?

The answer in part comes from asking your customers one key question: On a scale of 0-10, how likely are they to recommend your product?

Your future customers will answer with a 9 or 10. These are your Promoters. They repeatedly use your product, and enthusiastically recommend your product to others. Their word of mouth fuels your growth.

Passive customers are the people who answer 7-8. They are satisfied, but have little loyalty, and won’t take the time to recommend you. They’ll be swayed toward your competitors by a new feature or price.

There is a chasm between Passive and Promoter customers. Both groups are likely to answer that they’d use your product again. But when you ask them, “Would you recommend us?,” you’re changing the stakes. Now you’re asking your customers to put their own reputations on the line with their friends and colleagues. You’ll see a big gap between 8 & 9.



Key Trends for 2018

Fleet Logistics

The continued decline of diesel market share and the increased provision of total corporate mobility will be two of the key fleet trends for the year ahead. So says Dr Jörg Löffler, CEO of Europe’s largest independent fleet management provider, Fleet Logistics.

In a wide-ranging interview to mark the start of 2018, Dr Löffler said that he believed that demand for diesel would continue to fall throughout the year across Europe and not just the UK, where the decline in diesel demand has been most marked. This trend is firstly driven by irritated private car buyers but fleets might follow soon.

Fleet Logistics also believes that the issue of total corporate mobility will become increasingly important in the near future as many companies examine their total transport and mobility needs and do not restrict this solely to the provision of company cars.

Another key trend for 2018 looks likely to be the continued growth in recharging points for electric and hybrid-electric vehicles with more players entering the arena. Dr Löffler pointed to the recent initiative by oil giant Shell together with major German car manufacturers as evidence of the rapid speed of change within the European charging infrastructure.



Expensive Insurance

Detroit Free Press

The high-tech features on new cars make navigating the roads safer, but come with a higher price tag on the vehicles as well as the repairs and insurance.

Fixing a bumper isn’t the same old job. Repairing a bumper on an entry-level luxury car, for example, can cost about $3,550 for a 2016 model for parts and labor, compared with about $1,845 for a 2014 model, according to data from Liberty Mutual Insurance.

Why? The 2016 model has a distance sensor; the 2014 model does not. Parts are 130% higher and labor is 18% higher.

“Increasingly, simple, small repairs can now be much more costly and complex to do,” said Maxime Rieman, product manager for insurance at ValuePenguin.com, a personal finance research firm with a website that can help consumers select insurance plans.

Read the article at Detroit Free Press.

Fleet Trends & Issues

New York May Become the First City in the US With a Pay-to-Drive Plan

The New York Times

Under a major proposal prepared for Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, driving a car into the busiest parts of Manhattan could cost $11.52, trucks would pay $25.34, and taxis and for-hire vehicles could see surcharges of $2 to $5 per ride.

Uber and ride-hail cars jam streets in Midtown and Lower Manhattan, while truck deliveries and rampant construction routinely block traffic that now crawls at an average of 4.7 miles per hour, down from 6.5 miles per hour five years ago.

“New York City traffic congestion now ranks second worst among cities in the United States and third worst among cities in the world,” a draft of the report says. If not abated, the congestion will cost the economy of the metropolitan area $100 billion over the next five years, the task force estimated.

Read the article at The New York Times.

Say Goodbye to the American Sedan


There’s a good chance that in eight years, Detroit’s automakers will not be producing sedans in favor of the more lucrative crossovers and SUVs

Mid-size sedans like the Chevrolet Malibu and Ford Fusion have gotten bigger, making the Taurus or Chevy Impala less necessary. A consumer who needs more space will just buy an SUV.

“You can call 2018 the death of the car,” said Mark Wakefield, head of the auto practice at consultant AlixPartners. “Just look at all the new model launches in crossovers and the dearth of launches in cars. You can see where people are putting their money.”

Read the article at Bloomberg.

Is the World Ready for Hydrogen Powered Cars?

The Guardian

Inventor Hugo Spowers has a dream: to replace today’s cars with his own hydrogen prototype.

Fuel cells work by electrochemically combining hydrogen, stored in a pressurized tank, with air to generate an electric current; the only emission is water vapor. Development of fuel cell technology has been slow. They are expensive to produce (platinum is a key component), as is hydrogen.

In 2016, Spowers unveiled his first production-ready car: the Rasa, a radical, ultra-light two-seater powered by a hydrogen fuel cell. Spowers hopes to have the car on the market in 2019. “As far as we can tell,” he says, “we are the only independent hydrogen car startup in the world.”

Read the article at The Guardian.

Can Your Next Car be a Smartphone on Wheels?

The Verge

After a visit to the Detroit Auto Show, the newest in-car technology shows that automakers have fallen behind with features already available in the iPhone X.

While many drivers wish their infotainment systems worked like their phones, the biggest deterrent to making your car too much like your phone is that you may look at it more than you’re supposed to (when your eyes should be on the road).

“It’s great with the digital stuff with the hype and everything, but we forget we are analog people that want to look at and touch something. We must not forget the real world for the virtual world,” said Mercedes-Benz design chief Gordon Wagner.

Read the article at The Verge.

Automotive Technology


As self-driving cars become more of a reality, automakers are teaming up with new sorts of companies, many of them startups, to tell the world that they are “with it” and hip to the autonomous technology.

It’s a critical opportunity for the younger, smaller companies, as the public’s perception of cars changes. They need your trust to keep your family safe in a self-driving car.

“With all the new technologies merging, you have to have partners, because you can’t be expert in everything,” Henrik Fisker says.

Read the article at Wired.


Globally Speaking

By Mark Boada, Senior Editor

By all accounts, when it comes to the world’s electric vehicle (EV) present and future, China is the 800-pound gorilla. Consider the following, as reported in This Week in Asia last August:

  • In 2015, Beijing declared its plans to dominate the world’s electric car industry by the year 2025.
  • In 2016, China sold half a million electric vehicles, making it by far the world’s biggest market. In contrast, manufacturers in the world’s second largest market, the United States, sold just 155,000.
  • China’s electric vehicles are manufactured overwhelmingly by locally owned producers, not foreign joint ventures, and they are based on Chinese technologies. Last year China’s leading electric vehicle maker, Shenzhen-based BYD, turned out 100,000 cars. The leader in the US, Tesla, managed to sell 76,000 into its home market.

Elsewhere, you’ll find these facts:



Alcohol and Driving

The Detroit Bureau

A new government report recommends that all states significantly lower the level of alcohol in the blood from .08% to .05%, to be considered driving under the influence of alcohol.

The 489-report also calls for a number of other steps that could reduce alcohol consumption, including higher alcohol taxes and shorter hours for bars, restaurants and liquor stores.

“We know that impairment to drive a car actually starts far lower than 0.08. It starts at 0.02 or 0.03,” said Dr. Timothy Naimi, of the Boston Medical Center. “And there’s also good evidence to show that dropping from 0.08 to 0.05 saves lives.”

Read the article at The Detroit Bureau.

Fleet Management Resources
AFLA – Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association
Providing the advanced forum for corporate fleet professionals to network with industry leaders.
The CEI Group Inc.
CEI is North America’s largest provider of fully integrated fleet accident management, driver safety and risk management services.
NAFA Fleet Management Association
NAFA is the association for the diverse vehicle fleet management profession regardless of organizational type, geographic location, or fleet composition.
Offering a nationwide vehicle delivery and relocation service; serving the corporate and commercial fleet industry.
Since 1965, Donlen has been the fleet management industry’s leading provider of comprehensive, integrated financing and asset management solutions — and that spirit of innovation continues today.
PARS' mission is to provide you with high-quality service at competitive prices for all of your transportation needs.
Driven fleet professionals. Driving results.
Driving Dynamics
Driving Dynamics was established to help corporate fleet drivers develop expert, safe driving skills using proven, advanced driving techniques.
Wheels, Inc.
First in fleet for 78 years. Wheels helps you build tomorrow’s fleet today.

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