Whether you are actively looking for a new commercial vehicle supplier or not, there is a strong business case for occasionally shopping around and making sure you are getting the best deal. However, price is not the only factor as not all vehicle suppliers are created equal. Here we’ve listed the 3 most important questions to ask a potential supplier after you learn their prices, as well as the three questions you will probably want to ask next.
#1: Does what they have to offer really meet our needs?
If a commercial vehicle provider can’t get you exactly the vehicles you need exactly when and where you need them, they aren’t the best fit for your organisation no matter what else they might have to offer.
Make sure they actually have the right type and number of vehicles available (or can have them available before you need them), and ensure that their delivery times and lease/rental durations suit your plans.
Follow up: How can you customise your service to better suit us?
Some providers have close relationships with vehicle manufacturers, and can provide vehicles which have been specifically modified to suit you. Other swill be able to proactively advise you about what you really do need and how they can serve you.
#2: How will they ensure the vehicle or vehicles they provide work properly?
Vehicles are very complex machines, and one fresh out of the factory could still have one or more faults that prevent it from meeting your needs. Even if they are working when delivered, vehicles need regular maintenance. Your supplier should have a system to optimise vehicle uptime, and be able to customise this plan to suit the way you’ll be using the vehicles. Make sure you fully understand their procedures for manufacturer recall, basic repairs and servicing, breakdown cover and vehicle replacement.
Follow up: Does this provider operate their own workshops, and are they near you?
It is generally preferable for the supplier to have their own dedicated repair and maintenance facilities, However, if these are located far from where you’ll be using the vehicles this can be more of a hinderance than a help.
#3:What services are included in the price, and what costs extra?
If you started your search by looking for a lower price, you’ll have to be careful that a potential supplier actually offers all the services you’re used to. A lower base price might be covering up some expensive ‘options’ that you’ll be using regularly.
Specifically, ask if the quoted price includes things like taxes and fees, servicing, maintenance, tyre replacement, vehicle replacement and on-the-road breakdown cover.
Follow up: How transparent is their pricing scheme?
Double check with the provider about how they handle vehicle damage, wear-and-tear and excess mileage. You should be able to predict what you’ll be paying with a high degree of accuracy.
If you have any questions about individual or fleet vehicle supply, call us at 01935 310298. We’d love to discuss your needs and how we can meet them.