November 13, 2018

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Editor's Analysis & Top Industry News

Good Advice

Compared to other industries, fleet is certainly more open and welcoming than most. Many of us are involved and actively networking via NAFA and AFLA (and other organizations), and we see over and over just how many great folks there are in fleet.

We spoke with industry veteran (and PARS Founder) Jim Christiano at AFLA, and he offered up some powerful advice for fleet newcomers: get to know your suppliers. Speaking of newcomers, Booster Co-Founder Tyler Raugh has seen some immediate benefits from NAFA involvement.

Also in this issue, John Wysseier offers some great insights on Machine Learning, which is rapidly changing the landscape all around us. It’s a great read!

Ted Roberts

Thought Leadership

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

Disruptive Leadership — Master the principles of disruptive leadership

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

Managing the Reimbursed Fleet — Expert strategies to manage mobile employees

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

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


VIDEO: Having the Mechanics Come to You is a Huge Timesaver

This innovative company was created to bring the mechanics to consumers and save them money, and now they’ve shifted their focus to fleets.

VIDEO: Know Your Suppliers

 Great Advice for Newcomers to Fleet

Some good advice for newcomers to fleet: get to know your suppliers, and don’t be afraid to ask for their help.

VIDEO: Becoming Part of NAFA

 NAFA Newbie Impressed with His Experiences

As a newbie to NAFA, Tyler from Booster has been overwhelmed by how welcoming and helpful everyone has been.

The Fleet Spot

New Road Safety Magazine for At-Work Drivers & Their Families

eDriving invites you to take advantage of their new online road safety magazine for your employees and their families, Three60, which includes:

  • Guidance for safer at-work driving, including avoiding distractions, winter driving and other seasonal safety messages
  • Road safety news from around the world including new laws, studies and shocking headlines
  • Family safety updates including tips and best practice advice on child and teen road safety
  • Motorcycle safety news, maintenance and rider tips


Cyber Security, Electrification, and the Evolving Autonomous Landscape; What This Means to Fleet

NAFA Webinar: Wednesday , November 21, 2018, 12:00-1:00 PM EST

Instructors: Dennis Straight, Chief Technology Officer, Donlen; Elizabeth Rossiter, Director, Telematics and Safety Products, Donlen; and John Korte, VP Mobility Business Development, Donlen

Topics:Fleet professionals have to prepare for the arrival of connected vehicles, and be prepared for electrification, cyber security, and autonomous vehicles. You are the fleet expert, and your senior leaders will turn to you for answers. Learn how to be in a position of authority by learning what is on the horizon.

Register Today

A Call to Action: The Final Step in Successful Marketing Communication

By Ed Pierce, Fleet Industry Marketer

In my last three ‘Call to Action’ columns, I began a series of tips from an article by Anna Kucirkova of Connex Direct Marketing entitled “Four Key Steps Toward Successful Marketing Communication.” Here is the last installment of her story.

When it comes to developing and then deploying an effective marketing plan, there are some highly useful tools available that will make everything work more smoothly.


Is the Fuel Tax Destined to be Replaced? What It Could Mean for Fleet Electrification

By Mark Boada, Executive Editor

There’s more talk across America these days that the federal and state fuel taxes that are used to keep our highways and bridges in shape be replaced by another, more reliable source of funding: a Vehicle Miles Travelled (VMT) tax, also referred to as a mileage-based user fee.

I, for one, like the idea of replacing the current federal and state fuel tax scheme with a mileage-based user fee, and believe it’s inevitable.


Disruptive Leadership

By John F. Wysseier, President and Chief Executive Officer, The CEI Group, Inc.

Of all the technological advances mankind has achieved over the millennia that have changed the way we live and work, Machine Learning (ML) may well prove to be the one with the most powerful and disruptive effects.

And while one application – autonomous vehicles – is still in its infancy, ML applications in many other business applications are already here and more are on the way.

ML grew out of the computer science of artificial intelligence (AI). Broadly speaking, AI refers to computers programmed to perform tasks that normally require human intelligence, like recognizing images and speech and making decisions. As remarkable as that is, ML goes one step further: it creates computers that can learn from experience and actually improve their performance.



In the Public Interest

By Mark Boada, Executive Editor

This year’s survey by the National Conference of State Fleet Administrators (NCSFA) confirmed that most state and public university fleets follow best practices in many areas, but also found room for improvement in their acquisition and safety programs and their use of telematics.

The organization received complete responses from 27 state governments and agencies and 17 public universities, with more than 207,000 vehicles, from class 1 through 8, under management. Many of the fleets comprise law enforcement vehicles in addition to civilian assets. Results from the survey, which was managed by the fleet consulting firm of Mercury Associates, were presented at the NSCFA’s State Fleet Managers’ Workshop in New Orleans at the end of September.



Fleet Spectator

By Andrew Boada, Editor at Large

More and more fleets are getting on board the zero emissions bandwagon these days, and so are accepting TCOs that are higher than those for fossil-fuelled cars and trucks in order to acquire electric vehicles.

And while it’s true that at the tailpipe, hybrids (HEVs) and battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) emit fewer no greenhouse gas emissions, the bigger picture reveals another story.

The truth – which may be a surprise to some and appear to be heresy to others – is that when you consider the proverbial bottom line, both financially and environmentally, internal combustion vehicles (ICEVs) may be the way to go for fleets, at least for most locations and for the time being. This will take some explaining, but it comes down to this: manufacturing and powering EVs each entail the creation of greenhouse gases.


Fleet Trends & Issues

Study: Ride-Sharing Worsens Traffic in San Francisco

The Car Connection

Ride-sharing services Lyft and Uber may appear to make travel more convenient in big cities, but San Francisco says they’ve actually made traffic worse.

A study conducted by the San Francisco County Transportation Authority showed average speeds during morning hours decreased by 26 percent since 2009. In the evening, traffic speeds dropped 27 percent. Additionally, vehicle hour delays increased by 40,000 hours on a typical weekday and miles traveled on local roads jumped 630,000 miles. Translation: Uber and Lyft mean more vehicles on the road, and they’re clogging up streets.

Read the article at The Car Connection

British Government-Subsidized Plug-in Cars May Never Have Been Charged

BBC News

The British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA), which represents many fleets, said higher taxes on diesel cars incentivized companies to buy plug-ins, even if they had no intention of using their electric capability.

“There are some examples where employees aren’t even charging these vehicles up,” said Paul Hollick, The Miles Consultancy’s managing director. “The charge cables are still in the boot, in a cellophane wrapper, while the company and the employee are going in and out of petrol stations, paying for all of this additional fuel.

Read the article at BBC News.

Be Wary of Used Cars That Smell ‘Too Nice’

The Detroit News

The effects of a hurricane can be felt long after the winds and the rains die down. Flood-damaged vehicles are now appearing with “for sale” signs. There are nearly 500,000 flood damaged vehicles on the streets.

Flood-damaged vehicles may have mechanical, electrical and safety problems. Humidity and bacteria inside the car may also generate respiratory and other health issues for drivers and passengers. Close the car windows to check for a musty odor that might be caused by dampness. A scent may be used to mask musty odors

Read the article at The Detroit News.

Where You Live Can Greatly Increase or Decrease the Chances of Your Car Getting Stolen

USA Today

Honda Accord, Honda Civic, and Chevrolet and Ford pickup trucks are by far the most stolen vehicles in America. According to the NICB, many cars are stolen by large organized crime rings running sizable operations often operating out of certain major cities.

The city with the highest rate of car thefts in a state is not necessarily the city with the poorest community or with the biggest crime problems. The majority of these 50 cities have lower poverty rates, higher education levels, and higher household incomes than their respective statewide figures.

Read the article at USA Today.

Too Much Time Commuting?

The Washington Post

Research shows a notable difference between millennials and baby boomers when it comes to time behind the wheel. 59 percent of millennials say they’d “rather spend time doing more productive tasks than driving,” while only 45 percent of baby boomers make that same statement.

Most people average 321 hours in the car each year and get 120 hours of vacation..

“The idea of being able to drive from Colorado to Arizona and see the sights of America, that hasn’t gone away, but that’s not what we’re talking about here,” said Lisa Jillson, who leads Arity’s research and design department. “We’re talking about one person in one auto on really congested roads, with a pretty heavy expense. There is no open road on the day-to-day commute.”

Read the article at The Washington Post.


Tesla in VW’s Crosshairs

The Detroit Bureau

Volkswagen is set to launch a base-model, long-range electric vehicle for less than $23,000, a price that would undercut the long-awaited entry-level Tesla Model 3 by more than a third. After tax credits, the new version of the Model 3 still starts at about $40,000.

The Volkswagen Group has laid out an aggressive strategy that will include more than 40 all-electric models, as well as dozens of hybrids and plug-ins, for sale through its dozen different passenger vehicle brands. Discussions with Ford Motor Co. could partner them on EV development.

Read the article at The Detroit Bureau.


The Fleet CX Toolkit

By Wendy Eichenbaum

Imagine you’re on a business trip. You return to your hotel room exhausted after a long day of meetings. You look across the room to see a light on by your bed, the sheets turned down, and a chocolate mint on your pillow. It’s just a mint, or is it?

It’s the little details that people remember. People don’t tell their friends that the room was clean or that the bathroom had enough towels. But they will pass on the memory that made the experience special and out of the ordinary. These little details are microinteractions, just one action or moment. One alone can be memorable. Added up, they can define a world-class experience.


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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