It’s as you were in this category with ARI Fleet holding onto the award it captured last year.

ARI is a big player in the market with the stats to prove it: in the past year alone it has booked 136,902 SMR jobs, fitted 29,900 tyres and managed 11,627 breakdowns.

ARI understands that fleets need SMR to return capital to the business or deliver a return on investment.

Corporate fleet management from ARI is tech-driven and fully integrated with customer operations. The firm takes responsibility for supplier negotiations, cost control and logistics with the aim of achieving value for money and securing savings for customers.

ARI’s SMR team includes 17 LCV engineers chosen for their experience. They manage each job individually and ensure performance targets are hit in areas such as parts, quality standards and allotted labour hours, and that there is no unnecessary upselling from suppliers. In fact, ARI’s approach is to challenge the supply chain on cost and efficiency to avoid overcharging, as well as managing claims for unscheduled maintenance and repairs, and negotiating any issues with warranties.

ARI operates a transparent pricing policy to give clients a clear idea of whole-life costs, with reports rating every area of expenditure. Attention to detail is a point of pride: prior to a repair, for example, a 3D modelling system virtually strips down each part of the procedure to indicate costs before the work is undertaken. As a result of such cost transparency, ARI is able to offer customers pay-as-you-go maintenance to more closely manage expenditure. Renewable energy giant Siemens achieved a saving of over 65% on maintenance in its first year through pay-as-you-go and says its overall maintenance spend has reduced by 34% compared to its previous, bundled, SMR package.

ARI’s fleet management platform Insight provides each client with an onboard dashboard tailored to their fleet so that the SMR budget can be accurately linked to the mileage and age of vehicles, with the cost and operational impact of problematic trends highlighted.  

A new development in 2019 is ARI’s introduction of its Driver App, which lets customers manage SMR work from their phones. It covers service booking, MoTs and non-emergency work.

ARI’s cost benchmarking tool allows major clients, such as builders merchant Travis Perkins, to analyse the money being spent on vehicles at each of its depots and to identify inconsistencies.

ARI regularly monitors the 500 independent garages in its Masterserve network for quality, efficiency and price, a task facilitated by its Vendor Scorecard, which allows maintenance controllers to rate each site. ARI’s engineers then visit any businesses falling below the required standards.

And for customers like the RSPCA, eliminating downtime is crucial, as head of fleet Mark Hooper explains: “Our vehicles must be on the road, and every service we take has been designed with that, our business and our drivers’ safety in mind. We continually challenge ARI and they continue to deliver.”

Highly Commended: Free2Move Lease

Free2Move Lease offers bespoke fleet management services to assist fleet operators with servicing and mileage, including operational support.

Launched in November 2017 when parent group PSA combined Citroen Contract Motoring and Peugeot Contract Hire (Vauxhall is now also in the fold), its services can be considerably enhanced where the vehicle is equipped with a connected box, opening up telematics communications with the vehicle.

Today, the majority of the cars and vans available from Free2Move Lease are already equipped with this technology during manufacture, eliminating the cost of aftermarket alternatives. Where any require it a  PSA Group approved dealer-fit box is available where a factory-fitted box is not.

The information provided by the connected box enables Free2Move Lease to offer the bespoke fleet management services with connected data – providing additional insight into vehicle performance and mileage using odometer and fault code data. Equipped vehicles also provide eCall & bCall, which enable the driver to contact emergency or breakdown services at the touch of a button, or automatically in case of an accident.

SMR HC - Free 2move (robert Heath class=