That new piece of technology will save the company money and actually make employees’ jobs easier, but they still resist. It might be fear of change, it might be fear of getting replaced by technology, or it may be something else not even on your radar. But if employees refuse to use your new system, productivity suffers, and you’ll have wasted money.
When the City of Saint John, New Brunswick, wanted to install a smart fleet management system they undertook a consultation with fleet users and listened carefully to all their concerns and objections, and prepared responses for resistant users, allowing the City to speed adoption and save over $155,000 per year on fleet costs.
This article shares insights on what worked for the City of Saint John, as well as other ways you can overcome user objections to the new smart management technology you want to deploy.
City Installs a Smart Fleet Management System
In 2016, the City of Saint John, New Brunswick, wanted to do something about its oversized vehicle fleet. None of the City’s vehicles were tracked or managed centrally, so they didn’t have enough data to make informed decisions. Some vehicles were wearing down more quickly due to unexpected heavy use, while others were only driven infrequently.
Saint John decided to shift to a pooled fleet model, which streamlined how departments throughout the City used passenger sedans. Switching to this fleet model transformed how they operated in a very short amount of time, resulting in a first year's savings of over $185,000 and a recurring annual savings of $155,000 each year after that. They were able to achieve these results thanks to careful analysis and a KeyTracer fleet management solution.
KeyTracer is an automated key distribution and tracking system. It uses digital access controls to regulate who signs out keys and when. In addition, it can include a fleet management module that allows customizable scheduling and reporting features.
Read the full case study about how the City of Saint John saved over six figures in one year.
How Saint John Prepared For and Overcame User Objections
The City’s Fleet Operations Manager knew that no matter how thought-out his procedures, he would still face objections from many city employees. Many of those employees had grown accustomed to having their own city car. They saw it as a job perk. Others were just resistant to change.
“Even though there are many great reasons for pooling vehicles, convincing users that sharing vehicles was actually going to be an improvement for them was an uphill battle,” the fleet manager said. “We quickly recognized users would not like their routines being interrupted, nor would they like losing control.”
In all instances, the key to handling user objections involved a combination of policy, communication, and education. To prepare for the major change they were imposing on vehicle use, the City’s Fleet Services Division identified nine likely user complaints and implemented measures to respond to each.
The Impact of Using an RFID Fleet Management System
Using a pooled fleet model enabled by a KeyTracer system, the City of Saint John reduced its fleet size from 33 to 22 passenger sedans and saved over $155,000 annually. In addition, they made a further one-time revenue of over $30,000 through auctions of the eleven excess vehicles.
As an added benefit, using the pooled fleet model, the City expanded the number of eligible users from approximately 60 to 159. Formerly, only those individuals with assigned cars were allowed to use them. Since vehicles were now available to any city employee who verified their driver’s license status, everyone could use a vehicle for official business.
How to Make Your Own Smart Management System Rollout a Success
The City of Saint John managed potential user objections thanks to their careful planning. If you wait until after installing a new smart system to address concerns, your only choice is to react. Instead, try to get ahead of potential objections with some proactive planning.
Want to learn how a KeyTracer™ system can improve your fleet management?
Check out our Ultimate Guide to Key Control in the Workplace
About the Author
Jay Palter, VP of Marketing