September 1, 2020

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Editor’s Analysis & Top Industry News

Coaching Drivers Towards Low-Risk Behaviors

eDriving’s research confirms what other cognitive studies have shown – namely, that traditional training, whether virtual or in-person, can only do so much to change high-risk behavior behind the wheel.

Does this mean coaching is ineffective? Not at all. In fact, personal coaching conducted at the front lines is the key to reinforcing the culture-based driver safety message. Read the article by Jim Noble, Senior Vice President of Risk Engineering at eDriving.

Marketing to Fleet Managers

In his column today, Ed Pierce looks at the possibilities of an Inbound Marketing Program – including your website, content development and marketing, social-media efforts, and email-marketing campaigns. Start by focusing on specific digital tactics that address the needs of fleet service providers (who generally face long sales cycle times as prospects assess numerous stakeholder needs).

Speaking of Marketing to Fleet Managers, Fleet Management Weekly offers a variety of Content and Advertising options that are affordable and effective. Reach out to me at for more info.

Ted Roberts

VIDEO: Is Now a Good Time for Vehicle Replacement?

You need to keep moving forward with your fleet, and that might mean that this is still a good time for cost-effective vehicle replacement.

VIDEO: European Fleets

 Local Market Fleet Expertise Throughout Europe

The fleetcompetence group offers the considerable advantage of local market expertise in many countries throughout Europe.

Interview with YOU Here?

 Request for Zoom Video Interviews

We’re ramping up FMW’s video interviews via Zoom given the times, and are looking to speak with a variety industry experts (and we know that many of you are reading!).

Please feel free to suggest yourself, or someone you know. Any and all timely industry topics will be considered, and we look forward to speaking with you!

Email Ted Roberts to learn more:

The Fleet Spot

Leadership Panel on The State of the Fleet Industry Takes Place at NAFA’s Virtual I&E

Panel to include the presidents of NAFA, AFLA, and NTEA

PRINCETON, N.J. – (September 1, 2020) – NAFA Fleet Management Association (NAFA), the vehicle fleet industry’s largest membership association, announces a can’t-miss I&E general session spotlighting fleet’s purpose and challenges both for today and tomorrow. Registration for the 2020 Virtual Institute & Expo (I&E), September 14-17, is open at the conference website:

The insightful State of the Fleet Industry presentation features Patti Earley, CAFM, President, NAFA Fleet Management Association; Katie Keeton, President, Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association (AFLA); and Steve Carey, President, NTEA – The Association for the Work Truck Industry.


Lori Williams Named Chief Revenue Officer at eDriving

eDrivingSM, a global provider of driver risk management solutions, has appointed Lori Williams as Chief Revenue Officer.

Lori will be responsible for delivering eDriving’s revenue goals and expanding go-to-market channels. She will work closely alongside Business Development, Client Success, Product Development, and Marketing teams across eDriving’s global offices to penetrate new markets, expand partnerships, grow wallet share and achieve eDriving’s aggressive revenue goals.

“Lori has proven herself as a values-based leader who is passionate about putting customers first and galvanizing teams to action,” said Ed Dubens, CEO/ Founder of eDriving. “I’m delighted to welcome her to our leadership team where she will strengthen cross-department collaboration for the benefit of clients globally.”


WalletHub: 2020’s Best & Worst Cities to Drive In


Most Americans rely on cars to get around, as “87 percent of daily trips take place in personal vehicles,” according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

In addition, during the COVID-19 pandemic, fear of public transportation has led to more reliance on personal vehicles than usual. Due to the pandemic, 20 percent of people who don’t own a car are considering buying one.

While driving offers a more isolated commute, it is often a major hassle and expense. Drivers annually spend an average of more than 310 hours on the road. That’s nearly 13 days. Add the costs of wasted time and fuel due to traffic congestions, and our collective tab comes to about $1,400 per driver each year.


The Expense of Waiting to Perform an MVR Check on Your Fleet

By Trent Dressen, Director of Sales, SuperVision

While annual MVR checks have long been the accepted best practice to monitor drivers, continuous MVR monitoring offers fleet managers an accurate, up-to-date window on the fleet’s risk profile, helping to cut costs and minimize liability.

Why perform a once-a-year, manual motor vehicle record (MVR) check for drivers when you could have ongoing, accurate automated notifications on the people who operate those expensive pieces of equipment that you are responsible for overseeing?

What happens if one of your drivers (who had passed the MVR check with flying colors) gets a not-so-minor moving violation the day after the annual MVR check?


Fleet Marketing

By Ed Pierce, Fleet Industry Marketer

A significant number of marketing tactics available today and the evolving state of marketing best practices challenge marketers to find the best, ROI-driven successful Inbound marketing strategies.

Your website, content development and marketing, social-media efforts, and email-marketing campaigns — all of your digital presence — work together to become an effective lead generation and qualification source.

Let’s look at specific digital tactics that address the needs of fleet service providers who generally face long sales cycle times as prospects assess numerous stakeholder needs, research a variety of different offerings involving providers from disparate fields, and weigh the pros and cons of each.

The result: building brand awareness and trust over a long buyer decision process is important, and a singular branding message must be delivered through multiple tactics. Here are a few:



Crash-Free Culture

By Jim Noble, Senior Vice President of Risk Engineering, eDriving

eDriving’s research confirms what other cognitive studies have shown – namely, that traditional training, whether virtual or in-person, can only do so much to change high-risk behavior behind the wheel. Does this mean coaching is ineffective?

Absolutely not. Especially when using training that is geared toward the modern adult learning styles. However, too many organizations use mobile-based training as their only behavior change tool. Personal performance guidance has been found to be the best method of reinforcing the ongoing low-risk behavior message while helping drivers develop new habits that will keep them safe while driving for work purposes.

Personal coaching conducted at the front lines is the key to reinforcing the culture-based driver safety message. Front line managers are best suited to understand the daily safety performance challenges each driver faces.



Fleet Spectator

NAFA seeking an IRS waiver on ALV rule

By Mark Boada, Executive Editor

NAFA has petitioned the IRS for a waiver of the rule that will otherwise raise the cost, in some cases by as much as thousands of dollars, that drivers have to pay for the personal use of fleet vehicles.

Under IRS rules, the personal use of fleet vehicles is considered a taxable fringe benefit treated as income. The requested waiver concerns the most popular way by which fleets determine that taxable benefit, known in the tax code as “Annual Lease Value”. Personal use includes commuting to work as well as using vehicles for any non-business-related purpose.

NAFA is asking for the waiver because, starting in March of this year, so many fleet drivers are driving many fewer miles than normal because of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the annual lease value method, drivers receive taxable income that depends on the percentage of their total mileage that is for personal use.


Fleet Trends & Issues

Amazon Orders 1,800 Electric Delivery Vans from Mercedes-Benz

The Detroit Bureau

Amazon plans to add another 1,800 battery-electric delivery vans to its growing fleet, this time turning to Mercedes-Benz to supply the zero-emissions vehicles for use in Europe.

The new vans will quickly roll into operation in Europe, but Amazon will have to wait until 2022 before it begins taking delivery of the new vans being developed for its U.S. operations by start-up Rivian. Eventually, that fleet will include 100,000 of the new, zero-emissions models, the biggest order to date by Rivian, which landed $2.5 billion in new funding last month from a consortium of investors led by T. Rowe Price.

While Amazon may be pushing to bring climate change under control, there’s a more practical and “completely unemotional” reason for the surge in EV demand, said Pat Romano, the CEO of ChargePoint. As battery costs drop and useful range increases, all-electric vehicles are both easier to maintain and cheaper to operate.

Read the article at The Detroit Bureau.

Your Car’s Touchscreen Is Three Times Dirtier Than a Toilet, Study Finds

The Drive

A recent study conducted by Compare the Market, an automotive insurance comparison website based in the United Kingdom, discovered the top five dirtiest parts of a car’s interior—and let’s just say that if you’re the type who constantly eats in your car—it might make you reconsider.

Ten vehicles ranging from family cars and luxury vehicles to work vans, were swabbed in the following places: shifter, indicator stalks, steering wheel, driver seatbelt and seat, interior door handle, windshield, stereo/touchscreen, and rearview mirror. The study also swabbed a toilet seat at an office building to have a comparison in bacteria levels.

According to the results, the dirtiest area of a car is the stereo with total Relative Light Units (RLU) reading that was 371 percent dirtier than an office toilet seat. In second place was the shifter. That is gross, but not surprising considering how many objects we grab, touch, and scratch before reaching for the stereo volume knob or touchscreen.

Read the article at The Drive.

Self-Driving Shuttles Try Virus-Killing UV Rays To Assure Riders

The Detroit News

Voyage and May Mobility, two autonomous-vehicle companies that charge riders to go on simple, specialized routes, are putting UV-light emitters in their shuttles to help keep their services running. The rays are already used in ambulances and can destroy viruses, fungus and bacteria between rides.

The effort echoes Avis Budget Group Inc.’s move to market its partnership with Lysol maker Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc to boost disinfection protocols for its rental cars. Uber Technologies Inc. and Lyft Inc. also have taken steps to keep riders safe, though both are transporting far fewer people than before Covid-19.

Voyage’s service offers low speed trips on predictable routes to riders in two massive retirement communities in California and Florida. The company is putting the UV system in its third-generation vehicle – a retrofitted Chrysler Pacifica minivan – that costs half as much as previous models, helping make the roughly $2,000 added cost of the UV system more palatable. The new vehicle also can run without a safety driver.

Read the article at The Detroit News.

Fiat Chrysler, Led By Ram, Leapfrogs Ford In Customer Satisfaction; GM Drops In Survey

Detroit Free Press

The latest version of the American Customer Satisfaction Index shows that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, maker of Ram trucks and Jeep SUVs, actually improved its score compared to a year ago. That can’t be said for either General Motors or Ford.

The survey is based on interviews with 10,414 customers, “chosen at random and contacted via email between July 1, 2019, and June 14, 2020,” so the period covered also includes the initial months of the coronavirus pandemic.

“A year ago, Fiat Chrysler was the biggest loser in satisfaction, but for 2020, the carmaker rebounds 3% to tie with GM at 77. The improvement brings Fiat Chrysler … in line with both GM and Ford for the first time in five years. While the company benefits from high and stable satisfaction for its Ram nameplate, both Dodge and the self-named Chrysler brand post positive driver satisfaction upswings this year,” the report said.

Read the article at Detroit Free Press.

The Auto Industry


Coming from California, it should be no surprise that Senator Harris has a long record of action on climate change including investigating Exxon Mobil in 2016, voting against repeals of methane emissions, and sponsoring the resolution of disapproval for the 2019 rollbacks on power plant carbon pollution limits.

It is unlikely that Harris would “drive” fuel-efficiency regulations to more painful heights, though, since automotive manufacturers are already facing international pressures regarding fuel economy.

Specific to the automotive industry, Harris opposed the Trump Administration’s attempts to reverse the Obama-era fuel efficiency standards. A more likely influence might be the introduction of “… incentives for cars to be replaced with zero-emission vehicles manufactured in America, and extra, targeted assistance for low and middle-income families.” Harris said emphatically during a 2019 Town Hall that, “By my plan, by 2045 we will have basically zero emission vehicles only,” but her climate plan calls for 100% of vehicles as soon as 2035.

Read the article at Forbes.


Targeting Tesla

Ars Technica

Tesla’s Nevada Gigafactory was the target of a concerted plot to cripple the company’s network with malware, CEO Elon Musk confirmed. 

The plan’s outline was divulged on Tuesday in a criminal complaint that accused a Russian man, Egor Igorevich Kriuchkov of offering $1 million to the employee of a Nevada company, identified only as “Company A,” in exchange for the employee infecting the company’s network. The employee reported the offer to Tesla and later worked with the FBI in a sting that involved him covertly recording face-to-face meetings discussing the proposal.

“The purpose of the conspiracy was to recruit an employee of a company to surreptitiously transmit malware provided by the coconspirators into the company’s computer system, exfiltrate data from the company’s network, and threaten to disclose the data online unless the company paid the coconspirators’ ransom demand,” prosecutors wrote in the complaint. “This was a serious attack,” Elon Musk says.

Read the article at Ars Technica.


Crisis and Purpose

McKinsey & Company

In these stressful, surreal times, it’s understandable for CEOs to fixate on urgent corporate priorities at the expense of more intangible, personal considerations. How important is getting your people to think about their “purpose in life” right now when you’re worried about their well-being—not to mention corporate survival?

It’s more important than you think. During times of crisis, individual purpose can be a guidepost that helps people face up to uncertainties and navigate them better, and thus mitigate the damaging effects of long-term stress. Purposeful people also live longer and healthier lives.

Purpose can be an important contributor to employee experience, which in turn is linked to higher levels of employee engagement, stronger organizational commitment, and increased feelings of well-being. People who find their individual purpose congruent with their jobs tend to get more meaning from their roles, making them more productive and more likely to outperform their peers.

Read the article at McKinsey & Company.

Fleet Management Resources


The Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association. Advancing corporate fleet worldwide.

eDriving partners with its clients to engage with drivers and their managers to create a culture that supports lasting behavioral change to reduce collisions, injuries, license violations as well as a fleet’s total cost of ownership.

SuperVision is a fleet driver management solution for MVR & license monitoring, fleet management, fleet safety oversight and driver performance and retention.

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.

WEX fuel cards and fleet management solutions give you powerful tools to reduce spending — for any business, any fleet, any size.

Driving Dynamics
Driving Dynamics was established to help corporate fleet drivers develop expert, safe driving skills using proven, advanced driving techniques.

PARS’ mission is to provide you with high-quality service at competitive prices for all of your transportation needs.

Wheels, Inc.
First in fleet for 80 years. Wheels helps you build tomorrow’s fleet today.

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