With deliveries of car components and consumables to more than 30,000 customers every month, TPS – Volkswagen Group’s genuine spare parts and components supplier, has to rely on a fleet of vehicles that can’t let them down.
TPS operates 84 vehicle parts centres across the UK, which supply thousands of independent garages, repair centres and body shops with genuine parts for the Volkswagen Group’s vehicle marques – including Audi, Volkswagen, ŠKODA, SEAT and Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. The business looks to Volkswagen Financial Services | Fleet (VWFS | Fleet) to provide appropriate vehicles, finance and services to keep its network of distributors moving and deliver essential parts and consumables to its customers on time.
Roy Clifton, Group Parts Operations Finance Manager, is responsible for the fleet and its drivers. At the moment the business runs 680 delivery vehicles, of which 550 are light commercial vehicles. These are financed on a three-year lease by VWFS | Fleet, which also provides the insurance, service and maintenance that keeps the fleet to factory standard.
Roy stresses that keeping vehicles on the move is vital to its keen customer service and the business’s profitability. “Any vehicle downtime loses us money, because we have a driver who can’t make deliveries and a customer that doesn’t get its parts.”
He believes that VWFS | Fleet’s competency to keep vehicles maintained and working is down to the culture, scale and the resources with the organisation. “We have used another supplier in the past, but they just weren’t able to cope with the demanding environment in which we work.”
Chris Allgood, Strategic Account Manager for VWFS | Fleet’s southern region, is responsible for the management, retention, and development of large corporate fleets, typically of more than 500 vehicles. With his experience he understands the complexity of rolling renewals, maintenance and the servicing of vehicles in a large fleet.
“We need to make sure that vehicles are not only supplied on time, but that they are reliable. With our fully outsourced proposition of vehicles, finance, servicing, maintenance and a host of other value-added services we can eliminate some of the stress of managing a fleet – and I feel that this is a key differentiator in our fleet offering,” says Chris.
Accountable for operational finance, Roy also appreciates areas where efficiencies and cost savings can be made, such as reducing fuel consumption. TPS uses a telematics solution to find the nearest drivers to delivery addresses; capture mileage information; monitor driver behaviour; calculate fuel consumption and CO2 emissions, and to produce management reports.
TPS uses the fleet’s telematics solution in conjunction with VWFS | Fleet’s driver assessment and training package to support its TPS Centres’ Duty of Care policies. Centre Managers have access to driver behaviour reports to identify high-risk drivers and tailored training packages to provide drivers with the knowledge and ability to drive safely and efficiently.
“With so many drivers on the road across all parts of the country, we want to make sure that we have a proper risk assessment policy in place for our agents and that it is supported by appropriate training measures that protect the driver and our business.”
E-learning driver training provided by VWFS | Fleet allows drivers to access information conveniently and helps reinforce key safety messages.
This is a business that will always rely on the effectiveness of its vehicles and drivers, as Roy explains, “It is fundamental that we keep our fleet costs low and within budget, as well as our vehicles working and our drivers safe. VWFS | Fleet is able to provide all the products and services under one roof and that makes fleet management simpler and more productive.”