Category Archives: News

‘Alarming’ rise in number of drivers having their licences revoked, says record-breaking Licence Check

New figures released by the Driver & Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) show an ‘alarming’ rise in the number of drivers in the UK who are having their licences revoked, increasing the need for companies to be increasingly diligent and ensure driving licences are checked regularly.

That’s the view from Derby-based Licence Check, now part of online solutions provider, Ebbon-Dacs, and now officially the UK’s fastest growing provider of fleet licence checking and compliance services. New figures from the DVLA have revealed that the company carried out a record number of licence checks in 2018, with the numbers rising steadily throughout the year and the fourth quarter of the year finishing 52% higher than the first in terms of licences checked.

To analyse the number of licences being revoked annually, Licence Check applied to the DVLA under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. The resultant figures confirmed that in the last four years there has been a 50.0% increase in the number of drivers who had their licence revoked under the Road Traffic (New Drivers) Act 1995.

In 2015 the figure was just 7,944, but by the end of last year it had risen to 11,953, with an 8% increase between 2017 and 2018, further reinforcing the need for regular licence checks.
The freedom of information figures also revealed that the number of car and motorcycle drivers who had had their driving entitlement revoked or refused for medical reasons was 61,482, an increase of 4% over 2017, and up 29% when compared with 2015.

At the same time, the number of lorry or bus drivers who had also had their driving entitlement revoked or refused for medical reasons had increased from 11,213 in 2017 to 12,242 in 2018, a rise of 9.2%.

Meanwhile, the number of drivers with 12 or more penalty points on their licences is also on the increase. In July last year, there were 10,978 drivers with 12 or more penalty points recorded on their current driver record. By the end of March this year, that figure had risen to 11,150, a 1.6% rise in less than six months.

Terry Hiles, General Manager at Licence Check, said: “Firstly, we are delighted with the increase in the numbers of licences we are checking annually, which have now reached record levels.

“However, putting that achievement to one side, employers should be increasingly concerned by the growing number of drivers having their licences revoked and the increase in the numbers amassing more than the 12 point maximum over the last four years.

“Companies need to be increasingly on their guard to ensure that they are not employing drivers who have had their licence revoked in the last year or have exceeded the 12 point disqualification ceiling. The continuing upward trend in both cases requires a robust and focussed process to identify and properly manage work related road risks.

“We have already seen that there are a growing number of drivers in the UK who may be driving on foreign licences under reciprocal arrangements with the UK authorities, and these new statistics underline the need for companies to remain vigilant at all times.”

Hiles said companies needed to ensure that licence checks are carried out frequently and automated where possible to avoid any missed checks. Frequency of checks will depend on a variety of factors.

Licence Check’s main cloud-based Driver and Vehicle Information Solution brand, DAVIS, has been designed specifically to tackle exactly these issues and to provide companies with the necessary information about their drivers.

Within DAVIS is the award-winning Driver Risk Score feature which analyses all company drivers, profiling them as low, medium or high risk using results of a licence check, along with other factors.

Recently DAVIS has additional functionality within its Fleet File module that includes a new accident recording feature which will allow users to document accidents against a specific fleet vehicle and link the incident to a specific named driver, thus providing greater insight into the most at-risk drivers as forming part of an ongoing risk management process.

The new accident management function, which was unveiled at the Commercial Vehicle Show recently records date, time and location of the accident and provides enhanced dashboard reporting to include recent accidents and accident severity.

At the same time, this can be used to contribute to the risk scoring software algorithm so that a driver’s individual risk score is automatically updated.

“These latest figures confirm that licence checking and risk assessment are an essential part of any company’s armoury under various pieces of duty of care legislation. Regular checks, with the frequency dependent on the risk profile of the drivers concerned, are of fundamental importance to a company’s security and wellbeing,” added Terry Hiles.

Contact information:

Katy Holding
Marketing Manager
Licence Check
Tel: 01330 660 7107
Email: katy@licencecheck.co.uk

Press enquiries:

Mike Gunnell
MGMedia Services
Tel: 01832 275060
Mob: 07786 971 544
Email: mike@mgmediaservices.com

Ebbon-Dacs adds new geo-comms feature to fast-growing moDel solution

Ebbon-Dacs has added new features to its electronic vehicle delivery and collection solution, moDel, including a geo-communications module to provide tracking of vehicles in transit.

The new geo-comms functionality has been created in response to customer demand so that system users, both sender and recipient, can now track the location of the vehicle while en route using GPS technology, providing greater transparency and more accurate delivery times for both parties.

Michael Terry, Head of Commercial – moDel, said:”It seemed vaguely absurd to us that the delivery of inexpensive items from online suppliers, like Amazon, can be easily tracked so that customers are kept in constant touch regarding their whereabouts in the delivery process.

“But this type of functionality simply wasn’t available for the most expensive single item we buy, namely a new car. This new geo-comms feature addresses this issue and provides GPS location information to both sender and recipient, either via the moDel-VM portal or by a secure link contained in an email.”

Ebbon-Dacs is piloting the new geo-comms feature, which can be customised and branded with the sender’s corporate identity, before making it widely available to all users.

The moDel system is continually evolving and developing as new upgrades are added. The last 12 months have seen five new releases which have brought improvements and efficiencies in key areas of vehicle logistics, delivery and collection.

The latest features have just been made available in the latest 1.14 release, and include the addition of a quotation routine within the billing module for logistics companies and other users of the stand-alone moDel VM solution. This allows them to quote for a new vehicle movement and store it electronically in anticipation of it turning into a confirmed order.

The new release also allows users to see and retrieve all images taken via moDel during the collection and delivery process through the moDel-VM portal and more easily download them for scrutiny.

The moDel solution hit record levels in 2018, handling 282,135 vehicle movements, up 71% on 2017. Fastest growth came from the stand-alone moDel-VM system, which is used largely by logistics and other vehicle transportation specialists and saw 177,818 vehicle movements last year – a year-on-year increase of 211%.

This was despite a near 7% fall in the total number of new vehicles delivered in the UK in 2018 which, due largely to the impact of the new WLTP testing regime and uncertainty surrounding Brexit, adding to an ongoing decline in consumer and business confidence.

“We believe these latest features and the new functionality that we have added will make the system better still. We look forward to working with our customers on continued new capabilities to broaden the usefulness and value to the wide spectrum of businesses that move vehicles.” said Michael Terry.

Michael Terry, Head of Commercial-moDel

Contact information:

Robert Pilkington
Director
Ebbon-Dacs
Tel: 01865 329300
Mob: 07989 858248
Email: robert.pilkington@ebbon-dacs.com

Press enquiries:

Mike Gunnell
MGMedia Services
Tel: 01832 275060
Mob: 07786 971 544
Email: mike@mgmediaservices.com

Licence Check supports ACFO call for better grey fleet management

Fleet driver licence and compliance specialist, Licence Check, is backing a call by fleet operators’ association, ACFO, for enhanced grey fleet management services due to a rising number of grey fleet drivers.

ACFO recently held a webinar for its members entitled ‘Not so Grey: Managing Opt Out and Private Vehicles’ which is now available for members on its website.
The rising trend of employees opting for cash in lieu of a company car, due to a perceived rising tax burden, makes grey fleet management ever-more critical, says ACFO.

There are around 14 million-plus privately owned vehicles driven on work-related journeys, compared to around 940,000 company cars on the UK’s roads, according to HMRC, with a rising trend of employees opting for cash in lieu of a company car.

One of the key messages from the webinar was that who owns the car is largely irrelevant as the duty of care to manage occupational road risk is the same.

Simon Turner, campaigns director of RoadSafe, which delivers the Driving for Better Business campaign, said in the webinar: “Grey fleet will probably form a vital part of most companies’ future mobility solutions when integrated with other travel and communication options. But it needs to be effectively managed if it is to be successful. Employers must ensure they have well thought-out policies and processes in place and stick to them.”

And, he outlined a number of key areas of focus, including that driver licence checks were essential and that driver policies should be shared with grey fleet drivers, just as they would be with company car drivers.

At the same time, similar driver profiling, assessment and training regimes should be in place for both grey fleet and company car drivers; grey fleet vehicle checks should be undertaken including the status of servicing, MoT and Vehicle Excise Duty; and business insurance should be in place.

“We completely agree with ACFO’s position on the critical need for more effective grey fleet management,” said Richard Brown, director of sales at Licence Check, the UK’s fastest growing provider of licence checking services and now part of online solutions provider, Ebbon-Dacs.

Despite the clearly growing numbers, many companies still fail to recognise that they have a legal obligation to ensure grey fleet vehicles are safe to use, fit for purpose and lawfully on the road, and that the company is culpable in the event of accidents that occur in such vehicles, said Brown.

Previous research by Licence Check has shown that after speeding, some of the most common endorsements on the licences of grey fleet drivers were for construction and use offences, such as bald tyres, defective brakes or carrying an unsafe load, and insurance offences, typically vehicles uninsured against third party risks.

It was partly for this reason that Licence Check developed and launched its award-winning, cloud-based Driver and Vehicle Information Solution product, DAVIS, to help manage driver and vehicle fleet compliance including grey fleet management services.

The grey fleet solution within DAVIS manages the compliance around employee-owned vehicles, checking vehicle credentials, such as road tax and MOT, and enabling the easy upload and storage of key documents such as motor insurance policies, as well as checking for the correct level of business use cover.

For organisations looking to implement additional rules for grey fleet drivers, vehicles can be automatically approved or rejected dependent on a variety of factors such as age of vehicle and CO2 emissions, thus increasing grey fleet control.

“Businesses often incorrectly assume that, because the vehicle is owned by the driver and not the company, they are exempt from any responsibility.

“But employers put themselves at risk of claims by third parties if employees are driving on company business and are involved in an accident, without having proper business insurance cover. Equally, there is a risk that employees who are driving vehicles that are not roadworthy could cause harm to others, which could lead to the employer being prosecuted and heavily fined if they do not have a robust grey fleet policy in place,” said Richard Brown.

Brown said it was important not to forget grey fleet drivers in any corporate risk assessment and that the proper number and depth of licence checks needed to be carried out.

“Grey fleet drivers should be checked as regularly as if they were company drivers, including confirmation that they have the correct business class insurance and that they are eligible to drive the type of vehicle they are driving,” he added.

Contact information:

Katy Holding
Marketing Manager
Licence Check
Tel: 01330 660 7107
Email: katy@licencecheck.co.uk

Press enquiries:

Mike Gunnell
MGMedia Services
Tel: 01832 275060
Mob: 07786 971 544
Email: mike@mgmediaservices.com

Licence Check warns of duty of care dangers of untested foreign drivers

Companies are being warned that drivers they employ may not be familiar with UK driving laws after new figures revealed that foreign drivers can swap their driving licences for UK equivalents without having to pass a driving test in this country.

Derby-based Licence Check said companies need to be aware that this reciprocal arrangement could leave them exposed under duty of care regulations, after figures obtained under freedom of information law show that rising numbers of foreign motorists are using a legal loophole to get a British licence without taking a driving test in the UK. The number of non-British drivers trading in their licence for a UK one has risen by 79% cent in a decade.

Last year more than 150,000 drivers who took their test outside Britain obtained a UK licence under an exchange deal operated by the government. Britain has a reciprocal deal with more than 50 countries which allows drivers to take driving tests in their own countries and then swap their licence for a UK one when they become British residents.

However, some foreign motorists may have passed their driving licence tests in just six days in their country of origin, raising alarms over their ability to drive safely on UK’s roads.

The highest number of driving licence exchanges has been made by those with Romanian licences, followed by Poland, Italy and Bulgaria. However, all of these countries drive on the right, rather than on the left as we do in the UK, and often under very different driving conditions which do not mirror the increasingly congested roads we experience in this country.

The news comes at a time of a shortage of professional drivers in this country, with the Freight Transport Association recently warning about the combined impact of an ageing professional HGV driver workforce and a lack of new entrants coming through – which could leave the door open for more foreign drivers.

Richard Brown, director of sales at Licence Check, now part of online solutions provider, Ebbon-Dacs, and the UK’s fastest growing provider of fleet licence checking and compliance services, said: “This reciprocal arrangement could leave companies very exposed under duty of care regulations, as they owe a duty of care not just to their employees, including all company drivers, but to the wider public at large who they might come into contact with.

“We are seeing growing numbers of foreign delivery and service drivers in this country. You only have to think of parcel delivery firms to appreciate the growing numbers of foreign drivers on our roads.

“If a foreign driver working for a UK company was to cause an accident on our roads due to a lack of knowledge of our driving conditions, that could have major ramifications for the employer and could ultimately lead to prosecution.”

Brown said companies needed to carry out risk assessment of its drivers to identify those most at risk while driving for business, and if those that fell into this category included foreign-trained drivers then appropriate measures needed to be put in place.

“This could include remedial measures such as a supervised assessment and driver training,” he said.

Licence Check’s main cloud-based Driver and Vehicle Information Solution brand, DAVIS, has been designed specifically to automate and streamline driver and vehicle compliance management and address duty of care.

Within DAVIS is the award-winning Driver Risk Assessor feature which can be employed to assess all company drivers, using a mix of video, interactive and multiple-choice questions to better understand the driver’s psychology. It measures all road-risk areas, creating an occupational road risk profile for each driver that scores their personal risk factor.

This allows users to not only assess all drivers but to identify those that would present the highest risk to the business’s operations, allowing management to consider taking appropriate action to reduce that risk.

And from this month, DAVIS has additional functionality within its Fleet File module that includes a new accident recording feature which will allow users to document accidents against a specific fleet vehicle and a named driver, providing greater insight into the most at-risk drivers as part of an ongoing risk management process.

The new accident management function, which will be unveiled at the Commercial Vehicle Show later this month, records date, time and location of the accident and provides enhanced dashboard reporting to include recent accidents and accident severity.

It also issues reminders for open accidents and outstanding issues, as well as providing an upload facility for images of vehicle damage. It also carries insurance claim details and has the ability to assign accidents to a named driver.

At the same time, this has been reconfigured to calculate the associated risk of a particular accident so that a driver’s individual risk score is automatically updated.

“By recording accidents and assigning them to individual drivers in our new accident management functionality, companies’ view of driver risk is further enhanced, providing greater insight into those drivers at most risk. This becomes of even greater significance in the light of these latest figures,” added Richard Brown.

Contact information:

Katy Holding
Marketing Manager
Licence Check
Tel: 01330 660 7107
Email: katy@licencecheck.co.uk

Press enquiries:

Mike Gunnell
MGMedia Services
Tel: 01832 275060
Mob: 07786 971 544
Email: mike@mgmediaservices.com

Ebbon-Dacs’ moDel delivery solution hits record levels

Ebbon-Dacs’ market-leading leading electronic vehicle delivery and collection solution, moDel, handled record numbers of vehicle movements last year, despite uncertainty in the new car market.

Throughout 2018, the system recorded 282,135 vehicle movements, up 71% on the 164,976 vehicles handled in 2017. Fastest growth came via the stand-alone moDel-VM system, which is used largely by logistics and other vehicle transportation specialists and which recorded growth of 211% year-on-year, up from 57,057 to 177,818 vehicle movements.

This outstanding performance came despite a fall in the total number of new vehicles delivered in the UK in 2018 which, due to the impact of the new WLTP testing regime and uncertainty surrounding Brexit, fell by almost 7% nationally.

UK new car registrations totaled 2.37m units last year, down 6.8%, reflecting a turbulent year of model changes, regulatory upheaval and continued anti-diesel policies, adding to an ongoing decline in consumer and business confidence.

“We are delighted by the performance of moDel during 2018 in what were quite difficult market conditions,“ said Michael Terry, Head of Commercial – moDel at the Oxford-based software solutions provider.

“The latest figures underpin moDel‘s position as the benchmark system for fully automated vehicle collection and delivery within the UK fleet market, and it is now used by 17 of the leading contract hire and leasing companies.

“moDel-VM performed especially well and has proved increasingly popular with logistics and transportation companies that are not users of our e-procurement platform, Leaselink, hence the phenomenal growth rate,” he said.

The moDel solution, which handles in excess of 30,000 vehicle movements per month, is used by leasing companies, rental and logistics operators and around 150 dealerships throughout the UK.

The system is continually evolving and developing as new upgrades are added. The last 12 months have seen five new moDel releases which have brought improvements and efficiencies in key areas of vehicle logistics, delivery and collection.

Amongst the latest developments has been a major module allowing the stand-alone model-VM to integrate with the Leaselink e-procurement platform, creating greater job visibility for all moDel users, closely linked to the recently launched billing solution which allows logistics companies to store billing rates and raise invoice values for vehicle movements directly into their back office systems.

There have also been a series of improvements to the moDel app which improves the experience of smart phone users and delivers faster speeds for processing key documents.

moDel has been designed to allow users to automatically upload all electronic vehicle delivery and collection information directly into their back office systems, or into Ebbon-Dacs’ market-leading Leaselink e-procurement platform, thus cutting time, errors and needless administration as well as speeding up time to market.

It is highly regarded by participating dealers, because it promotes a better vehicle handover experience and guarantees faster payments, improved accuracy and greater transparency.

Michael Terry, Head of Commercial-moDel

Contact information:

Robert Pilkington
Director
Ebbon-Dacs
Tel: 01865 329300
Mob: 07989 858248
Email: robert.pilkington@ebbon-dacs.com

Press enquiries:

Mike Gunnell
MGMedia Services
Tel: 01832 275060
Mob: 07786 971 544
Email: mike@mgmediaservices.com

Ebbon-Dacs’ reveals upgrades to market-leading Leaselink e-procurement platform

Oxford-based technology solutions provider, Ebbon-Dacs, has revealed a series of enhancements and upgrades to its market-leading e-procurement platform, Leaselink, which will streamline the latest releases, improve reporting and increase transparency.

Leaselink, which is now employed by the majority of the UK’s major leasing companies, is used to electronically source more than 210,000 vehicles a year, linking around 2,000 franchised dealers and several vehicle manufacturers to a community of leasing, rental and fleet management suppliers.

However, from the end of April, there will be a change to the way in which releases of new functionality for the Leaselink platform are made to users.

Historically, these have been around six months apart, have often comprised large amounts of code and have been time-consuming to test and prepare. Now, using new tools and technology, new releases will be more frequent, typically monthly, in smaller, more easily digestible batches of code with less associated risk.

As a result, there will be quicker deployment of platform enhancements, making them available to the Leaselink community much earlier than before and providing quicker resolution times where issues are identified.

At the same time, Ebbon-Dacs has also revealed the latest developments for the procurement module for both light and heavy commercial vehicles within Leaselink.

These include a new supplier portal for major third party suppliers, including conversion specialists, fitters of ancillary equipment and racking providers, to update the progress of special fitments and adaptation work to commercial vehicles in the order pipeline.

As a result, the supplier portal will provide suppliers with greater transparency, allow lead suppliers to better manage dates for fitments, and link with Leaselink to provide real time, accurate updates.

Building on the success of the data warehouse access module (DWAM) provided for lease companies, Ebbon-Dacs has released a DWAM module for dealers and groups.

The Leaselink data warehouse houses huge amounts of information over four main resources: enquiries; orders; vehicle status history and demonstrator and brochure requests.

The new DWAM allows dealers and groups to access and interrogate the data and feed the results directly into their back-office systems to help make better informed decisions but, in addition, they are able to use a set template dashboards to report on key metrics and SLA’s.

In a major new development for 2019, Ebbon-Dacs also revealed that it would be releasing a version of Leaselink accessible on multiple browsers, thus further widening its reach and scope.

Leaselink Product Manager, Angela Trendell, said: “These latest enhancements to Leaselink will increase not just functionality across a number of key areas, but will streamline upgrades to the platform, reducing reaction and implementation time so that our users can benefit from important changes more quickly.

“This is part of our ongoing strategy to closely and more frequently connect with our customers to help plan future developments to the platform for everyone’s benefit,” she added.

Contact information:

Robert Pilkington
Director
Ebbon-Dacs
Tel: 01865 329300
Mob: 07989 858248
Email: robert.pilkington@ebbon-dacs.com

Press enquiries:

Mike Gunnell
MGMedia Services
Tel: 01832 275060
Mob: 07786 971 544
Email: mike@mgmediaservices.com

Licence Check reveals upgrades for its cloud-based DAVIS solution

Licence Check, the UK’s fastest growing provider of fleet licence checking and compliance services, has announced new upgrades for its cloud-based Driver and Vehicle Information Solution brand, DAVIS, including accident recording, enhanced licence checking and improved security.

The new releases, which have been timed to coincide with the opening of the Commercial Vehicle Show on April 30, bring important new functionality to DAVIS, which automates and streamlines driver and vehicle compliance management and addresses duty of care.

DAVIS was enhanced last October with the launch of Fleet File, providing users with a database for managing their fleet vehicles, including company cars and pool vehicles, and storing all relevant vehicle information, including age, tax, MOT and CO2 emissions.  It also allows users to upload business-critical documents such as fleet insurance policies and driver handbooks.

Now, from next month, a new accident recording feature will allow Fleet File users to document accidents against a specific vehicle and a named driver to provide greater insight into the most at-risk drivers as part of an ongoing risk management process.

The new accident management function records date, time and location of the accident and provides enhanced dashboard reporting to include recent accidents and accident severity. It also issues reminders for open accidents and outstanding issues, as well as providing an upload facility for images of vehicle damage. It also carries insurance claim details and has the ability to assign accidents to a named driver.

At the same time, the award-winning Driver Risk Score feature within DAVIS has been reconfigured to calculate the associated risk of a particular accident so that a driver’s individual risk score is automatically updated.

Richard Brown, director of sales at Licence Check, now part of online solutions provider, Ebbon-Dacs, said: “By recording accidents and assigning them to individual drivers in our new accident management functionality within Fleet File, fleet managers’ view of driver risk is further enhanced, providing greater insight into those drivers at most risk.”

In terms of enhanced licence checking, company car drivers now have the ability within a nominated driver function within DAVIS to add their spouses or partners to the licence checking system rather than relying on system administrators, using a reduced number of steps. This has the effect of cutting down on workload and making the process of adding familial drivers much simpler and more efficient.

At the same time, security within DAVIS has been further enhanced, thanks to a new two-factor authentication system that requires a secondary security process after logging on. The new optional feature, which has been developed in response to client requests, will issue users with a pin number via text message as the second identity check each time they log in, providing a greater level of security for the clients that require it

Richard Brown added: “It has been particularly rewarding to work on these important new releases for DAVIS, as we know from client research that they will have a positive impact on improving efficiency and transparency when managing driver and vehicle compliance. We look forward to providing more details to visitors at the Commercial Vehicle Show. “

Contact information:

Katy Holding
Marketing Manager
Licence Check
Tel: 01330 660 7107
Email: katy@licencecheck.co.uk

Press enquiries:

Mike Gunnell
MGMedia Services
Tel: 01832 275060
Mob: 07786 971 544
Email: mike@mgmediaservices.com

Growing grey fleet driver numbers raise compliance risk

An increasing number of grey fleet drivers have raised the compliance risks their employers face and make the need for the appropriate policies and procedures of paramount importance, according to Licence Check, the UK’s fastest growing provider of licence checking services.

Official figures for the last tax year available show that the number of UK employees taking company cars fell by around 20,000, as a rising tax burden has prompted drivers to switch away from the car benefit, often in favour of cash allowances.

Latest statistics from HMRC showed an estimated 940,000 drivers paid Benefit‐in‐Kind on a company car in the 2016/17 tax year – down 2% from 960,000 the year before.

Many of those former company car drivers will now be using their own cars on company business when studies show conclusively that such vehicles are typically older, less regularly serviced, emit higher levels of pollution and are incorrectly insured.

However, despite this widespread use, many companies fail to recognise that they have a legal obligation to ensure that grey fleet vehicles are reasonably safe to use, are fit for purpose and are lawfully on the road, and that the company is culpable in the event of accidents that occur in such vehicles.

Richard Brown, director of sales at fleet driver licence and compliance specialist Licence Check, now part of online solutions provider, Ebbon-Dacs, said companies of all sizes were often unaware of the consequences of allowing employees to use their own cars on company business  without the proper compliance checks and balances in place.

This was important as previous research by Licence Check had shown that the most common endorsements on the licences of grey fleet drivers were for speeding, construction and use offences, such as bald tyres, defective brakes or carrying an unsafe load, and insurance offences,  typically vehicles uninsured against third party risks, said Brown. 

It was partly for this reason that Licence Check developed its award-winning, cloud-based Driver and Vehicle Information Solution brand, DAVIS, to help manage driver and vehicle fleet compliance including grey fleet management services.

The grey fleet solution within DAVIS manages the compliance around employee-owned vehicles, checking vehicle credentials, such as road tax and MOT, and enabling the easy upload and storage of key documents such as motor insurance policies, as well as checking for the correct level of business use cover.

For organisations looking to implement additional rules for grey fleet drivers, vehicles can be automatically approved or rejected dependent on a variety of factors such as age of vehicle and CO2 emissions, thus increasing grey fleet control.

“Businesses often incorrectly assume that, because the vehicle is owned by the driver and not the company, they are exempt from any responsibility. However, that completely ignores their legal obligation to ensure that grey fleet vehicles are reasonably safe to use, are fit for purpose and are lawfully on the road,” said Richard Brown.

“Employers put themselves at risk of claims by third parties if employees are driving on company business and are involved in an accident, without having proper business insurance cover.  Equally, there is a risk that employees who are driving vehicles that are not roadworthy could cause harm to others, which could lead to the employer being prosecuted and heavily fined if they do not have a robust grey fleet policy in place.”  

Brown said it was important not to forget grey fleet drivers in any corporate risk assessment and that the proper number and depth of licence checks needed to be carried out.

“As we have seen, a growing number of employees are opting for cash allowances and using their own cars on company business due to increases in Benefit-in-Kind taxation. Grey fleet drivers should be checked as regularly as if they were company drivers, including confirmation that they have the correct business class insurance and that they are eligible to drive the type of vehicle they are driving,” he added.

However, there was an upside in ensuring the appropriate policies and procedures were in place, said Brown, as businesses could benefit from savings in off-road time due to reduced breakdowns, as well as reducing the risk of prosecution and imprisonment faced by senior managers and directors.

“The savings achieved will more than justify any investment costs over a fairly short period,” he said.

 

Contact information:

Katy Holding
Marketing Manager
Licence Check
Tel: 01330 660 7107
Email: katy@licencecheck.co.uk

Press enquiries:

Mike Gunnell
MGMedia Services
Tel: 01832 275060
Mob: 07786 971 544
Email: mike@mgmediaservices.com

Autorama implements Ebbon-Dacs’ Leaselink platform for all new vehicle orders

Hemel Hempstead-based Autorama Group has selected Ebbon-Dacs’ market-leading e-
procurement platform, Leaselink, to handle all new vehicle orders across its three main brands
and generate operating efficiencies across the business.

Autorama, which has experienced rapid growth in the last four to five years, is one of the UK’s
largest credit brokers and operates a fully funded fleet of around 45,000 vehicles. It is the major
sponsor of National League football in the UK.

The business operates across three main brands: Vanarama, which specialises in sales of light
commercial vehicles; Motorama which provides new cars to both B2B and B2C customers; and
Pick-up Direct which handles sales of new pick-up trucks.

The Group orders some 15-16,000 new vehicles per annum across its three business lines, and
had previously relied on manual processes and spreadsheets. However, these were neither
scalable nor could they cope with the pace of growth the business had witnessed in recent
years.

To identify a more efficient and fully automated alternative, Chief Commercial Officer Jo Elms
headed up a selection and implementation project which began by evaluating the main e-
procurement platforms in the UK.

It quickly became apparent that Ebbon-Dacs’ Leaselink solution was not only the most widely
used platform by both dealer groups and the industry as a whole, but it was the most
transparent, easiest to use and most readily recognised.

The Autorama Group has some 60 supplying dealers on its system but a central core of around a
dozen groups supply the bulk of new vehicle orders.

“And they were all familiar with and regular users of Leaselink which made our decision even
easier,“ said Jo Elms.

Leaselink is the market-leading web-based e-procurement solution in Europe and has supplied
and tracked vehicles worth over £18bn in the last four years. It is used to electronically source
more than 210,000 vehicles a year and links around 2,000 franchised dealers and several vehicle
manufacturers to a community of major leasing, rental and fleet management suppliers.

Elms said the implementation of Leaselink was already bringing a number of benefits, including
greatly improved transparency; the ability to track orders anywhere in the supply pipeline; the
removal of manual purchase orders with a fully streamlined and automated ordering process;
better management information reporting; and the speeding up of delivery times by around
15%.

“We use Leaselink in conjunction with Stocklink, a standalone system that Ebbon-Dacs
developed several years ago and which gives our sales team an overview of the vehicles we hold
in stock.

“They can then reserve a vehicle for 48 hours on the customer’s behalf, but if the deal is not
completed by then, the vehicle goes back into stock. It gives us more structure and control to
our sales process,” she said.

As the next phase of its implementation, Autorama also plans to use Ebbon-Dacs’ highly-
acclaimed moDel vehicle delivery and collection solution to control all deliveries of new vehicles
in the future.

The moDel system, which integrates fully with Leaselink or can be operated as a stand-alone, is
now employed by 17 of the UK’s largest contract hire and leasing companies, along with several
vehicle manufacturers and daily rental companies, and has recently achieved record results with
over 30,000 movements in one month.

Justine Hawkins, Head of Commercial for Ebbon-Dacs, commented: “We are delighted that the
Autorama Group has selected our Leaselink solution to handle all new vehicle orders across its
three main brands, and are confident the platform will deliver the efficiencies in terms of
manpower, time, management reporting and transparency that the business is looking for. “

Jo Elms, Chief Commercial Officer, Autorama

 

Notes to Editors

About Ebbon-Dacs

Ebbon-Dacs is well established as a provider of hosted, web based technology solutions to the automotive contract hire and leasing community. For around 20 years, the company has focused on connecting and automating the fleet community with an increasing range of platforms.

The company, which is owned by a private equity group, has an international presence in the Netherlands and Germany, and through partners in Italy. In the UK it recently acquired the Licence Check vehicle licence checking business.

About Leaselink

Leaselink is Europe’s market leading web based e-procurement solution, linking franchised dealers and motor manufacturers to major leasing, fleet management, and rental companies.

An established online community, Leaselink is accessed by over 2,000 franchised dealers and dealer groups every day to respond to tenders and optimise the supply of fleet vehicles. Last year, the platform was used to order more than 210,000 new vehicles by the UK’s leading leasing, rental and fleet management companies.

Contact information:

Robert Pilkington

Director

Ebbon-Dacs

Tel: 01865 329300

Mob: 07989 858248

Email: robert.pilkington@ebbon-dacs.com

 

Press enquiries:

Mike Gunnell

MGMedia Services

Tel: 01832 275060

Mob: 07786 971 544

Email: mike@mgmediaservices.com

Richard Brown – ‘new smart motorways mean drivers need to be constantly aware’

Smart motorways will increase need for regular licence checking

The growing number of smart motorways across the UK which rely on Advanced Traffic Management (ATMs) system cameras will increase the need for regular driver licence checking because of the increased capture of speeding events.

That’s the view of Richard Brown, director of sales at fleet driver licence and compliance specialist Licence Check, the fastest growing provider of licence checking services in the country and now part of online solutions provider, Ebbon-Dacs, following a strategic acquisition at the end of last year.  

“Drivers could notch up sufficient penalty points for possible disqualification on just a single journey if they are not continually aware and do not observe motorway speed limits, increasing the onus on fleet managers to check their licences on a more frequent basis. Annually is no longer sufficient,” said Brown.

The latest section of smart motorway opened on the M1 near East Midlands airport recently, between junctions 23a, Nottingham/East Midlands Airport, and the approach to junction 24 for Derby, joining other stretches on the M25 and M6.

The permanent 24-hour ATM smart cameras are live constantly and not just when a lower speed than the national limit is showing on the overhead gantry. The ATM system incorporates automatic ticket generation that logs the registration number of any speeding vehicle and issues a speeding ticket.

Speed limits displayed inside a red circle on overhead signs are legally enforceable. If no signs are displayed, the national speed limit applies to these areas of the motorway. Drivers caught by the system face fines of up to £2,500, based on income, and up to six points on their licence. Speeds over 90mph could lead to automatic disqualification.

“Smart motorways are the future and the means by which the authorities will regulate traffic flow – which means greater surveillance of drivers. As a consequence, drivers will have to be more attentive and aware of speed limits at all times. Lapses in concentration could cost them their licence or increase their risk profile with their employer,” said Brown.

Brown said that companies may need to look at the frequency of licence checking with the advent of increasing stretches of smart motorways to ensure that drivers still have the entitlement to drive and have not amassed too high levels of points or other convictions on their licences.

“We always advise our clients to look at the type of vehicle being driven and the nature of the driving. For example, with vocational driving where goods or passengers are being carried, our recommendation is in line with the Traffic Commissioner’s advice, which is to check licences four times a year,” he said.

“For high mileage drivers, we would also advocate four checks per annum because they are a higher risk category of drivers. For company car drivers where driving is part of their job, we would generally recommend carrying out at least two checks a year and, for more casual users once a year. Clearly, employers at all times should consider a risk-based approach to licence checking.

“Companies should not forget grey fleet drivers as well, especially as we are seeing a significant increase in the number of employees opting for cash allowances and using their own cars on company business due to increases in Benefit-in-Kind taxation.

“Grey fleet drivers should be checked as regularly as if they were company drivers, including  confirmation that they have the correct business class insurance which is often overlooked,” he added.

Licence Check works with many customers in the fleet, leasing and rental, transport and logistics and coach and bus markets, offering a wide range of licence checking services. The company recently expanded its range of services to include the Driver and Vehicle Information Solution brand, DAVIS, a cloud solution to help manage driver and vehicle fleet compliance including grey fleet management services.

Richard Brown – ‘new smart motorways mean drivers need to be constantly aware’
Richard Brown – ‘new smart motorways mean drivers need to be constantly aware’

Notes to Editors

About Licence Check

Derby-based Licence Check, which celebrated its tenth anniversary last year, won the ‘Safety Award’ at the 2018 Business Car Awards and, more recently, the ‘Innovation of Risk Management Award’ for its DAVIS solution at the British Fleet Awards. Established in 2008 by Richard Brown, it is one of the UK’s leading licence checking businesses, carrying out hundreds of thousands of online driver licence checks per annum and is the UK’s fastest growing licence checking business.

The company works with both private and public sector customers, including end user fleets, vehicle leasing and rental suppliers, transport and logistics companies and coach and bus operators, to name but a few, providing real-time driving licence checking solutions and driver compliance.

The company is also a founding member of the Association for Driving Licence Verification (ADLV), the trade body for driving licence checking operators.

More recently, the company’s range of customer services has been expanded under the Driver and Vehicle Information Solution brand, DAVIS, a cloud solution to help manage driver and vehicle fleet compliance for both company vehicles and the grey fleet.

The company was acquired by Ebbon-Dacs in November 2018. Richard Brown, commercial director, Terry Hiles, and all existing staff have remained with the business, which will continue to be based in Derby.

Ebbon-Dacs

Ebbon-Dacs is well established as a provider of hosted, web-based technology solutions to the automotive contract hire and leasing community. For over 15 years, the company has focused on connecting and automating the fleet community with an increasing range of platforms.

Its main online solutions include the market-leading e-procurement platform, Leaselink, and the vehicle delivery system, moDel, both of which are used extensively throughout the UK and increasingly in Europe.

Contact information:

Richard Brown

Director of Sales

Licence Check

Tel: 01330 660 7107

Mob: 07966 406947

Email: richard@licencecheck.co.uk

Press enquiries:

Mike Gunnell

MGMedia Services

Tel: 01832 275060

Mob: 07786 971 544

Email: mike@mgmediaservices.com