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Keeping the company car running: advice for avoiding repair and maintenance headaches
Wed 12 April 2017 - 11:44 amIndustry | Professional Services | Real Estate | Transport | Logistics
With over 900,000 company cars on the roads in the UK alone, it’s clear to see that many businesses have an entire fleet of company cars for their employees as opposed to just a couple. Often provided as part of a benefits package, employees can expect a wide variety of advantages both in their working and personal lives from having a company car.
But, whilst company cars are often a great addition for those driving them, they can be a nightmare for the business owner in charge of tax bills and ensuring everything runs smoothly. From damage to keeping on top of running costs, there are plenty of maintenance factors that contribute to a company car scheme that many business owners often overlook. So, if you have multiple employees driving around in company cars and you’re experiencing consistent maintenance-related headaches, here are a few common issues and how to resolve them.
Wear and tear
It’s almost impossible to avoid some degree of wear and tear on your company cars, especially if your employees have been using them for a while. Anything from weather conditions to mindless vandalism can cause your cars to become damaged, so it’s essential you have policies and solutions in place to deal with any problems that may arise.
In addition to engineering or mechanical damage to the inner workings of the vehicle, windscreen damage is also extremely common. Even just a minor degree of windscreen impairment could have serious consequences, as it could impair the driver’s vision and cause an accident. So, if you notice any problems with your cars’ windscreens, getting in touch with an expert is the best thing to do. For inspiration on the type of skill you should be looking for, take a look at Novus Auto Glass repair or replace services.
High running costs
When running a company car scheme, there are lots of hidden expenses many business owners aren’t initially aware of. From fuel to general maintenance to insurance, costs can significantly mount up dependent on how many cars you have.
To ensure your business money is being spent in the most cost-efficient way possible, optimize exactly how your employees are using their company cars. If you want to save on fuel, place a monthly cap on the number of miles they can drive or if you want to reduce insurance costs, make sure every company car driver takes a driver-safety assessment to guarantee they’re driving as safely as possible on the roads.
As the business owner, it’s essentially your responsibility to ensure your company cars are being used and paid for responsibly. But, taking care of this entire scheme on your own can take up a huge amount of time that you could be spending on other tasks for your business.
If you find yourself becoming burnt-out and stressed over handling all company car responsibility, the simplest solution is to hire someone else to do it for you. Whether you ask an existing member of your business to take on the job or outsource it to someone totally new, taking the responsibility off your hands is likely to do the world of good if you feel it’s getting on top of you.
Not everyone is super safe behind the wheel and, when it’s their own car, they can drive how they please. But, when it’s a company car, there are certain standards and responsibilities that need to be upheld.
If you’re concerned about the driving habits of your company car drivers, consider implementing monitoring and tracking devices into their cars. This will not only track where they drive but will also monitor their speed and overall driving safety. Allowing you to truly assess the quality of how your company cars are being driven, this is a vital step if you’re worried at any point about the safety of both your drivers and your cars.
Better still, this procedure will likely give the drivers an incentive to improve their driving. Installing monitoring devices into their cars may feel quite intrusive and, if they see safer drivers receiving more company benefits and rewards than them, they’ll not want to feel like they’re being targeted.
Whilst giving employees company cars comes with a lot of benefits, it’s inevitable some issues will arise eventually. Whether it’s a maintenance headache or a safety blunder, keeping on top of everything and implementing different strategies when needed is sure to keep all your company cars running smoothly.
About the author
Corey Buckley is a mechanic who has experience working with fleet vehicles to keep them on the road and the business running. He shares some top tips for fleet management as well as basic repairs.