15 Sep 21

The importance of continuous learning for Fleet and Mobility managers

MHC Mobility is the latest partner to join the International Fleet Managers’ Institute (IFMI). Fleet Europe caught up with Andrew Wilson, European Business Development Manager, to talk about the importance of education, the latest trends in the fleet industry and MHC Mobility’s plans for the future following the recent merger of Mitsubishi UFJ Lease & Finance Company Limited and Hitachi Capital Corporation.

Q: Why do you think education is important in the fleet and leasing industries?

“It’s simple really, when you know more, you can do more, and I believe innovation and education are connected. Learning a new skill or improving knowledge can help individuals to think in different ways and develop fresh solutions to old problems.

It’s also beneficial to stay ahead of the curve. In the past 18 months, we’ve seen huge advances in technology; EV adoption and mobility-as-a-service (MaaS) are just two areas. Fleet managers must stay informed on these developments, or they risk being left behind.

Powering the future of movement is only possible if we share our knowledge and expertise with all involved. Being better informed gives you a competitive advantage, but the other significant value of the IFMI is the opportunity to network, which is fundamental to business development.”

Q: So, what are the industry trends and how are they impacting the role of the fleet manager?

“In the last 18 months, we’ve seen more flexible working. COVID restrictions and being home based have opened up a whole world of opportunity that was there before but wasn’t considered workable. Now we know it is. Companies are reassessing the traditional ‘nine-to-five-in-the-office’ and this is having an impact on traditional three-year car leasing.

In Europe there’s huge variation in adoption of EVs from country to country. So, fleet managers must have a global plan but act locally. Governments are giving mobility higher regard, which is encouraging, but I think more needs to be done to ensure we can continue working towards providing transformative mobility solutions for all, and fleet managers need to be aware of this.”

Q: Do you think the times we’re in and the near future are more challenging or exciting for fleet and mobility managers than the past 10 years?

“Well, it’s both! It’s going to be both challenging and incredibly exciting because there’s so much happening. The traditional three-year lease is evolving into short-term, full service leasing or vehicle subscription models, for example. There’s mobility with bikes, scooters and a combination of everything, which for fleet managers is introducing a whole new raft of complexity and challenge.  It’s an opportunity to really learn and develop new skills but also be mindful of the fact that we’re at a tipping point and the mobility environment will continue to evolve and change.”

Q: How does MHC Mobility plan to support fleet managers through those changes?

“That word – mobility – is part of our DNA. We’ve worked hard to be at the forefront of mobility innovation and always put our customers first on this journey. We’re committed to providing flexible mobility solutions, to keep moving forward and innovating. Whatever fleet managers need – whether that be cars, eScooters, bikes, taxis, trains, or buses – we work with customers to find a solution that works for them.

Our strap line is ‘powering the future of movement’. It’s a bold statement and a bold ambition but it’s one that we’re striving to be at the forefront of. We’re agile and can continually adapt to customers’ ever-changing needs. As the agenda grows in importance, digitalisation accelerates, cities evolve and ways of travelling change, we add new services to our portfolio and provide more mobility options.”

Q: What makes the tendering exercise a challenge in your opinion for fleet managers? And what is your primary tip towards successful tendering?

“Try to look beyond pricing. It’s important to identify key differentiators beyond pricing – cheapest is not necessarily the best option and service is not always representative of the price. You need to show that you’re getting the best value for money.”

Join us for the IFMI Digital Masterclass where we will be sharing expert knowledge and opinion on the subject of the “Do’s and Don’ts for winning tenders”, plus much more thought-leadership content. Register here.

Authored by: Alison Pittaway