James Rodgers, Category Lead - Fleet, explains the steps organisations looking to shift to sustainable fleet solutions need to take.

One positive effect of the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) has been the beneficial impact less travel has had on air quality

Subsequently, there has been an increased interest in sustainable transport solutions, accelerating the change from conventional internal combustion engines to alternatively fuelled vehicles, such as electric ones. 

At CCS, we know that many organisations expect to begin the shift to sustainable solutions in 2021. This is a challenging process for any organisation, so to help, we have identified the 3 steps organisations looking to transition to sustainability must consider.

Step 1 – know your data

First, you need to develop a clear understanding of how your fleet is currently being used. 

You should seek information on journey types, frequency and mileage, as well as the service, maintenance and repair impact on vehicles. You also need to understand driver behaviour which impacts fuel consumption and emissions. 

It is important to factor in hired vehicles and instances where employees use their own cars (also known as grey fleet). Remember to build in the cost to your business of all those mileage and subsistence claims!

Step 2 – understand demand and scope solutions

Next, you need to understand the optimum composition of your fleet.  

It sounds obvious, but your first consideration should always be how to reduce the need to travel altogether. For those essential journeys, you will likely end up with a blend of fleet and pool vehicles, hired in vehicles and, yes, grey fleet.

With the average car on the UK road 8 years old, and likely to be powered by petrol or diesel, grey fleet is an area that often inadvertently pushes up an organisation’s carbon footprint.

To counter this, salary sacrifice schemes are an effective method of providing a new, cost-effective and low-emission vehicle to employees while reducing an organisation’s carbon footprint and improving staff retention. 

To obtain buy-in for your electrification plans, you need early and meaningful stakeholder engagement. This of course includes employees, but also your internal sustainability, finance, estates/property and HR teams too. 

It is also critically important to plan your vehicle charging infrastructure early and before placing any orders for your new electric vehicles.  

Home-based charging can be relatively easy to implement and can even form part of the vehicle lease contracts. Work-based charging can be more challenging and costly. Explore options such as using public charging infrastructure or implementing revenue generating charge infrastructure. 

Step 3 – achieve great things 

Now to set your strategy and begin to implement changes. 

New vehicle models and technologies are being introduced at a rapid pace, so don’t assume you won’t need to revisit your strategy periodically. We share regular updates to help keep you up-to-date. 

Our Fleet Portal is a great tool that can help you identify all the latest vehicles available in the market.  It provides access to all vehicles available in the UK and, by using the filtering systems, it’s easy to identify those vehicles that meet your criteria. The competitive quoting functionality ensures value for money and visibility of whole life costs when comparing different vehicles.

Next steps

Wherever you are on the journey, every step you take moves you closer to reducing the carbon footprint.

Need help with your next step? We are here to help you with every aspect of your shift to sustainability.