The Fleet: Driver study by Sewells Research & Insight reveals how company car drivers derive less enjoyment from the experience of choosing a new company car, the longer the process goes on.
The findings will concern HR departments that invest in company cars as a key tool of staff recruitment and retention.
Fleet: Driver uncovered a four-stage process in company car selection, with drivers progressing from pre-consideration to active consideration, then action, before making their final choice. The study found that 42% of drivers look forward to the ‘Active Consideration’ stage when they research their options, and a similar percentage enjoy this step.
But by the time they are forced to take action, either visiting a dealer or booking a test drive, only 34% of drivers enjoy the process. Few feel special, despite wielding significant budgets, with drivers of ‘job need’ cars deriving significantly less pleasure from the selection process than older, more senior ‘perk’ car drivers.
One key insight in Fleet: Driver is the difficulty for manufacturers and dealers to influence drivers while they are in the pre-new car prompt and research phases. Yet by the time drivers reach the action stage (visiting franchised dealers/taking test drives), many have already made up their minds on their next company car, before the traditional touch points of visiting dealerships and test driving models.
More than one in three (35%) of company car drivers say they have made up their minds before visiting a franchised dealer, and 40% say they had already made up their minds before a test drive.