April 17, 2018

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Editor's Analysis & Top Industry News

The People You Will Meet!

NAFA 2018 I&E is opening in just six days! The agenda delivers cutting-edge trends, technologies and products in fleet, and solid techniques to help fleets drive costs lower and efficiencies higher. And it’s networking nirvana!

In FMW this week, Bernie Kavanagh talks to the advances in data protection in How API Can Help Fleets Track These Common Business Risks. Want to learn more? Stop by the WEX booth on the Expo floor.

Finding Your Role Model is the subject of Laura Jozwiak’s Customer Driven column and the topic could not be more timely. She invites us to attend the WIFM reception at I&E to hear about the organizatiion’s outstanding mentorship program.

Do you have a teen driver? Or a teen who is aching to be one? If so, you will want to read Art Liggio’s column in Safety & Risk Follow the Leader – Mom, Dad You’re It

Special thanks to media partner International Fleet World for John Challen’s terrific interview with George de Boer, Leader of Connected Car Initiatives, Tom Tom Telematics.

Janice Sutton
Editor in Chief

Thought Leadership

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

Fleet Asset Management – Best practices for work truck management

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

Fleet Spectator A 360 view of the fleet industry

Globally Speaking — Perspectives on the multinational fleet

In the Public Interest — Successfully managing the government fleet

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

Think, Execute, Win!Leadership tips from NBA Star and motivational speaker Walter Bond

VIDEO: Class 4, 5 and 6 Chevy Silverados Have a Lot to Offer

The new Chevy Silverado class 4, 5 and 6 trucks have a lot to offer fleets – including ease of upfitting and a comfortable interior.

VIDEO: EVs and Telematics

 Bringing Telematics and Electric Vehicles Together

Electrification and telematics are two of today’s key trends in the fleet industry, and XL Link brings them together seamlessly.

VIDEO: Safe Driving

 Safety Tip: Ready-Brake

The One Second Advantage Safety Tip, from Driving Dynamics: The Ready-Brake Technique

The Fleet Spot

WIFM Webinar: Make Health Easy

The next WIFM Webinar will be held Wednesday, May 16th from 2-3pm CT.

The host will be Carol Phillips, multiple award-winning author of, 52 Simple Ways to Health, and host of the Ask Coach Carol radio show on WTPL-FM. As an energetic corporate health coach and consultant, she has helped hundreds of employers and thousands of employees improve their wellness using her proven techniques.

Carol’s message is clear: Health is all about being happy, listening to our true inner voice, and making one healthy choice at a time!

Register Today!

Use Data to Reduce Your Fleet’s Accident Rate by 15-20%

Download Donlen’s free white paper to learn how you can manage your fleet’s safety data and take action to reduce your fleet’s accident rate.

Do you know which data points to monitor in order to proactively correct risky driving behavior and prevent accidents in your fleet? Download Donlen’s latest white paper today to learn how you can use data to prevent fleet accidents and most importantly, ensure your drivers get home safely.


LeasePlan USA Adds Transformation Officer to Executive Leadership Team

LeasePlan USA announces the newest addition to its executive leadership team. Felipe Smolka joins the company as senior vice president and transformation officer.

Smolka will lead the strategy to drive modernization and innovation across the U.S. subsidiary and launch the company further into its journey to deliver what’s next for fleet, mobility and connected vehicles.

“The market moves fast, and the fleet industry – as we know it – is changing,” said Smolka. “Higher customer expectations, tech disruption and fast product cycles present an immense opportunity for LeasePlan to leverage data and user insights to deliver engaging products, and much deeper and meaningful experiences.”


Vehicle Manufacturers to Reveal Leaps in Fleet and Mobility Technology at NAFA’s 2018 Institute & Expo

NAFA Fleet Management Association will hold a unique panel of top automobile executives that will reveal the significant mobility and technological improvements in store for fleet vehicles.

This event, How OEMs are Addressing “Mobility” and the Future of Fleet, will take place at NAFA I&E on Thursday, April 26th, at 8:30 AM in Expo Hall D.

Lending their expertise and insight into this year’s panel are: Michele Bartlett, General Manager, Commercial and Government Fleet Sales, Ford; Frank Dankovich, Director, Fleet Sales, FCA; Dave Depew, General Manager, Fleet Sales, Toyota Motor, North America; and Ed Peper, US Vice President, GM Fleet.

The presentation will be moderated by Fleet Management Weekly CEO and Editor in Chief Janice Sutton.


Accelerating the Future of Fleet

By Bernie Kavanagh, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Large Fleet, WEX, Inc.

By getting machines to recognize patterns on their own, machine learning has powered massive data transformations across industries, making computing processes more efficient and affordable and making it possible for cars to drive themselves and for internet search functions to become increasingly sophisticated.

In the fleet industry, it’s already helped companies cut down on unnecessary fuel spend and to adopt technologies such as video-based driver safety systems. And thanks to new advances in Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), machine learning is now providing an entirely new level of data protection and security for B2B and cross-border payments.

These types of payments are historically complex and scattered through multiple parties. They require the movement of data along with funds and have been more complicated to track for mishaps and more vulnerable to fraudulent and unethical spending. In the past, to predict future spendings, companies had to manually track data-focused spending trends and habits. Today’s APIs allow fleet companies to monitor for suspicious behavior and fraudulent activity while also providing their employees with several options for payment.

READ MORE to learn how APIs can help fleets tackle these risks.


Customer Driven

By Laura Jozwiak, Senior Vice President of Sales and Client Relations, Wheels, Inc.

Now what do we do?

We started having these Customer Driven conversations 18 months ago, sharing many topics over that time ranging from the importance of practice to going beyond expectations to building loyalty and authenticity. I have enjoyed hearing and being part of the conversations that these topics have spawned. It is inspiring to know that these ideas have expanded beyond this column.

That said, while we may have read and talked about these topics, taking action is what makes a difference. And now seems like a good time to discuss how to integrate this information into your specific world; what works for one person or organization may not work for others.

This is where it is helpful to have someone with whom you can bounce ideas around to determine how to best incorporate them into your situation. Think about a good role model or mentor within your organization who knows you well and can help direct what ideas would work best for your personality, your role, and company culture.



Safety & Risk

By Art Liggio, President and CEO, Driving Dynamics

Picture this scene: you, a seasoned fleet driver; are driving through the city, traveling at the posted speed-limit. You find yourself passing through busy controlled intersections—all of a sudden your cell phone rings, what is your next move?

Same scenario, but this time imagine your newly-licensed teenage son or daughter behind the wheel, driving through the city, traveling at the posted speed-limit, moving through busy controlled intersections—all of a sudden the cell phone rings, what will be your teenager’s response?

Like all parents, you hope that your teen will make the decision not to answer the call or respond to the text message. What assurances do you have that the correct decision will be made? The first step in helping your child become a safe and responsible driver is to acknowledge that you play the most important role in their success behind the wheel.


Fleet Trends & Issues

Volvo’s New EV Truck Ready to Meet Tougher City Emissions Rules

The Detroit Bureau

Volvo’s new FL Electric 16-ton truck is designed to function in an urban environment, acting primarily as a delivery truck and will be operating first on the streets of the country’s capital, Gothenberg.

Without exhaust emissions, it can be used in indoor terminals and environmental zones. The low noise level creates opportunities for doing more work at night, thus reducing the burden on the roads during the day.

“We’re immensely proud to present the first in a range of fully electrically-powered Volvo trucks ready for regular traffic,” said Claes Nilsson, president, Volvo Trucks. “With this model we are making it possible for cities that aim for sustainable urban development to benefit from the advantages of electrified truck transports.”

Read the article at The Detroit Bureau.

Uber to Double Down on Safety in Their App

The Washington Post

Uber has opposed changes requested by riders and regulators in the past, but will soon be adding upgrades aimed at keeping its U.S. ride-hail customers safe, including an emergency 911 feature akin to a “panic button”.

Riders will also be able to share their trip information with up to five “trusted contacts” on every trip so there are multiple sets of eyes to ensure rides go smoothly.

“In the past, Uber conducted background check reruns in jurisdictions where required,” CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a blog post Thursday. “Going forward, we’ll proactively rerun criminal and motor vehicle checks each year, regardless of whether there is a legal obligation to do so.”

Read the article at The Washington Post.

Changing Company Culture is Volkswagen’s New CEO’s Primary Tasks

The New York Times

Herbert Diess, a former BMW executive who joined Volkswagen two months before the emissions scandal exploded, was named chief executive by the Volkswagen supervisory board and now must demonstrate that he can navigate the company’s well known insular, hierarchical company culture.

Being an outsider to both Volkswagen and the company’s base of Wolfsburg, can either help or deter Diess as one of his primary tasks is changing the culture to establish a stronger whistle-blower system, and ensure that employees believe they can use it.

“Culture is certainly the most difficult task for Diess,” said Ferdinand Dudenhöffer, a professor at the University of Duisburg-Essen who follows the car industry.

Read the article at The New York Times.

Autonomous Technology Prepares for the 3 P’s: Profitability, Policy and Public Safety

The Detroit News

Defining the levels of autonomy that the industry uses to integrate increasing amounts of sensors and artificial intelligence into vehicles has been the focus of the Society of Automotive Engineers, who met in Detroit last week.

“I think all of us have this heaven-and-hell scenario of what autonomous vehicle technology is going to do,” Karina Ricks, director of mobility and infrastructure for the greater Pittsburgh area, said during a panel discussion this week. “The version of hell that I see is one where we ultimately have to wall our pedestrians away from the travelways so that we can make way for autonomous vehicles.”

Read the article at The Detroit News.

Autonomous Vehicles

International Fleet World

By John Challen

What will be the impact of autonomous vehicles? George de Boer, leader of connected car initiatives at TomTom Telematics, does some crystal ball gazing.

Management systems have become essential tools for fleet managers and operators in recent years, helping to monitor and control company vehicles and employees when behind the wheel. But with so many systems in the marketplace – and with many of them offering the same or similar benefits – it can be confusing to know which is the right one to choose for a business.

TomTom Telematics is just one of the many service providers in the fleet management sphere, but it is fully focused on the evolution of the products it currently has, as well as preparing for new user models and forms of transportation. “We are using our 16 years of experience in commercial vehicles to get data from vehicles into one platform and making it understandable and valuable for fleet managers,” explains George de Boer, currently in charge of business development for connected cars, but a veteran of the TomTom business.

“The role of the fleet manager is different for cars to commercial vehicles as the former is more about monitoring where the fleet is, how much it is costing the company and the promotion of safer driving. In passenger cars there isn’t the need to know exactly where vehicles are and when they will be at their destination – not at the moment, anyway.”



Reading Emotions

The Verge

As more and more autonomous vehicles are expected to hit the road in the future, engineers and startups are shifting their focus to technology that could help prevent future self-driving collisions.

Start-up companies like Renovo Auto and Affectiva highlight their work to build a self-driving car system that monitors not only driver attention, but one that can also read passenger and pedestrian facial expressions for a better understanding of the emotions inside and outside the vehicle.

“We spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to sense inanimate objects with LIDAR and cameras, and that’s super important,” Renovo CEO Chris Heiser said. “And companies like Affectiva give us a brand-new data stream to look at and help every single one of the people in our ecosystem — people who building self-driving, people who are building teleoperation, people who are building ride-hailing applications — they all want to know how people are feeling and reacting to these automated vehicles.”

Read the article at The Verge.


Daydreaming and Driving Don’t Mix

The Washington Post

According to an insurance company’s recent analysis of distracted driving and traffic safety, daydreaming is still the biggest cause of distracted driving crashes.

One of the best ways to keep the mind on task is to find it something else to do that offers some stimulation – simple word games and tuning into a radio program are much less distracting than a telephone conversation, even with a hands-free device.

“Talking with someone on a phone is much more distracting to a driver than even talking to someone in the car. When conversing inside the vehicle, a passenger will generally vary the conversation’s level of intensity and engagement in sync with traffic conditions the driver faces,” said Paul Atchley, a professor of psychology at the University of South Florida in Tampa said.

Read the article at The Washington Post.

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 79 years. Wheels helps you build tomorrow’s fleet today.

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