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summer 2011 | issue 03

Raising The Bar ÂŁ1.5m investment in infrastructure and facilities

driven

The quarterly magazine from Northgate

Relationship Building

New Website is a Real Hit

A Clean Slate

100% Commitment to Training


welcome

02

Summer is upon us and we find ourselves in what is now the third edition of DRIVEN with much having happened over the course of the last few months. In May we announced the restructuring of the business, consolidating from twelve operating entities down to seven under a more focused and structured management team. A number of processes have been reviewed to establish the most effective and efficient way for our staff to manage our customers’ needs and requirements.

Underlying financial highlights year ended 30 April 2011

Our IT system has now been embedded within the business and we are working to ‘go live’ across the network on a number of customer initiatives all geared around delivering a better experience. In the next six months, driver logistics and central administration will be rolled out across the UK. As we do all of this we have announced our year end results and most notably the highlights of £53.8m profit before tax and a reduction in net debt of £68.4m. Our teams have worked tirelessly through the year to deliver these results and create a more solid foundation from which to create a sustainable future for us all. These results enable us to invest in better facilities and working environments for our customers and staff, investment in improving the quality of our fleet, 20,000 new vehicle purchases in 2011/12 in the UK and more training and development for our teams in every discipline of the business.

% change

2011

2010

Group operating profit

+ 28%

£105.6m

£82.8m

Group profit before tax

+ 47%

£53.8m

£36.5m

Group ROCE (Return on capital employed)

+ 3.5%

11.9%

8.4%

UK operating profit

+ 25%

£73.6m

£59.0m

UK operating margin

+ 4%

22.0%

18.0%

Group ROCE 2011: 11.9%

Bob Contreras Chief Executive | Northgate plc

driven / summer 2011

571%

2010: 8.4% 2009: 5.8% 213% 163%

On behalf of all of our team I would like to thank you for your continued support. Yours

Closing net debt (£m) and gearing (%)

£886m 2009

£598m 2010

£530m 2011

Operational highlights UK

Spain

Utilisation

90%

91%

Fleet size

61,200

43,500


call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

contents: Welcome

05 > 06 >

Green For Go

08 > 10 >

Relationship Building

12 > 14 >

New Website is a Real Hit

16 > 19 >

Feature: Mercedes-Benz Apprenticeships

23 > 25 >

Working in Partnership

26 > 29 >

Feature: Volkswagen Crafter

31 > 32 >

10 Things You Didn't Know About...

33 > 35 >

In the Van With‌

36 > 37 >

Movers and Shakers

38 > 39 >

Northgate and Customers Hit the Skids!

summer 2011 | issue 03

02 > 03 >

03

Contents Raising the Bar

29

Feature: Peugeot Efficiency Beyond the Fleet A Clean Slate 100% Commitment to Training Testing, Testing!

08

Feature: Peugeot iOn Gearing Up for Future Success

35

It's All for a Good Cause Location Directory

12 31

driven / summer 2011


green for go

Golden hat-trick in 2011 RoSPA Health and Safety Awards

Colin Gilstin, Northgate Vehicle Hire's Safety and Environment manager, (right) receives the Gold Award certificate from Michael Hampson, RoSPA trustee.

We are delighted to announce the news of our third consecutive Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents' (RoSPA) Gold Award. Colin Gilstin, Safety and Environment Manager, was presented with this year's Gold Award during a ceremony at the Birmingham Hilton Metropole Hotel. Mr Gilstin remarked: "The award is the culmination of yet another year's tireless efforts to maintain the highest possible levels of safety across the whole Northgate Group. To win a Gold Award for the third consecutive year against extremely strict judging criteria is testimony to the successful implementation of a wide-range of initiatives to ensure the health and welfare of all of our employees."

Axis Live! After 18 months of hard work, the Axis IT system has now been rolled out across the whole of the UK. The final areas to go live were the South, South East, Home Counties, Scotland, North East and Northern Ireland. The team, led by Jonathan Smith, IT Director and Paul Parry, Project Director worked throughout the Bank Holiday in May to ensure a smooth transition to the new system. Jonathan Smith commented: “It has taken a major effort from the project and operations teams. We would personally like to thank everyone for their time and commitment in ensuring that the roll-out has been delivered so effectively and on-time.”

New talent to drive the business forward

call: 0844 8266 555

Marc joins the organisation fresh from Tarmac Building Products where he was responsible for developing and implementing a Human Resources function in a business that had recently become standalone from its parent company. With over 20 years industry experience Marc is delighted to be joining the organisation. “Northgate is undergoing a period of rapid and exciting change, and I am delighted to be joining the business at this significant time.” Bob Contreras, CEO commented: “We have continued to invest in training and development throughout the year, however the business has been lacking a real focus across the Human Resources and in particular, training and development aspects of the business. “This appointment reinforces our commitment to invest in and develop our people and I am certain that Marc will make an extremely positive contribution.” Teresa joins the business to head up the National Sales Division which includes New Business, Account Management and the Public Sector team. She has a wealth of direct management experience gained from within the finance, automotive and most recently forex markets with Travelex.

This award comes amidst significant investment and the implementation of various health and safety initiatives. Amongst these is a new campaign focused around 10 key principles to staying safe and sound at work, which is fronted by characters Ms Safe and Mr Sound. The overriding aim of this campaign is to promote safe behaviour and attitudes in the work place. To read the full article visit the news section of our website northgatevehiclehire.co.uk/news.html

Northgate is delighted to welcome Marc Bertrand, UK HR Director and Teresa Byrne, Commercial Central Manager (Sales).

Teresa said: “I am delighted to be joining Northgate, having admired and sold against them during my time at GE Capital. It is the clear brand and market leader and I look forward to working with the teams.”

Marc Bertrand, UK HR Director and Teresa Byrne, Commercial Central Manager (Sales).

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

Commenting on Teresa’s appointment Gareth Jones, Commercial Director added: “Teresa has a strong demonstrable track record of business development and customer retention. She will bring a new dimension to the team and I am looking forward to working with her.”

driven / summer 2011

summer 2011 | issue 03

Green for Go

05


infrastructure investment

06

Raising the Bar If it’s true that your first taste of a food is with your eyes, then it could be said that your first impression of a company is formed in the same way. This year, Northgate Vehicle Hire will be investing £1.5m in infrastructure and facilities as part of a long term programme to set a blueprint for its premises for the benefit of both customers and colleagues.

Work begins to fit out the new Glasgow workshop

Workshop planner to be displayed in reception areas

New reception desk in Glasgow

Simon Ridley, Operations Director North commented: “The suitability of our existing sites has, for a long time, been an area of the business we have wanted to review. The fleet has grown substantially over the last 15 years with acquisition along the way, but the sites are now not at a level that, as a business, we aspire to.” Scotland and the West Midlands will be the first regions to benefit from this investment. The West Midlands was identified as a region that was lacking a major hub to manage the growing fleet size in what is a very large conurbation. Last year a site in Cannock, just off the M6 was identified. Once fully open, Northgate expects to see a significant rise in business and retail rental as well as in the workshop. The workshop will be fitted with the latest ramp equipment, rolling roads and other tools and facilities to maximise the site's servicing and maintenance proposition. The site will also be home to a Van Monster location with the existing Birmingham site relocating. Cannock will provide a yard to display up to 120 vehicles as opposed to 70 at Birmingham and it will also become the flagship site for the Van Monster brand.

driven / summer 2011

An engineer in Glasgow fits one of the new ramps

For similar reasons, Glasgow was also selected in this first phase of infrastructure improvements. Unlike the West Midlands, Glasgow has a nd large enough site to provide such a hub, but the facilities were dated and operationally unsuitable. ringg Simon Ridley continued: “We are spending around £300,000 reconfiguring ving ing the Glasgow site to make it more efficient. More importantly we are giving eir our colleagues a working environment that allows them to carry out their d.”” jobs effectively and give our customers an experience which is unrivalled.” ed. Cramped and uncomfortable waiting areas will be completely refurbished. e ers This investment not only provides comfortable surroundings for customers but also an area for them to work and take calls. The site will have a dedicated reception area as a first point of contact for both rental and workshop customers. There will be two TV screens soo customers will be able to see how England are getting on in the cricket and how their van is getting on, as the live workshop planner is beamed on to the screen.


infrastructure investment “There’s nothing worse than being told a job has been started when it hasn’t,” Simon Ridley commented. “This will become a thing of the past at Northgate as you will be able to track your own maintenance progress.”

The workshop has been designed to allow optimum operational efficiency and workflow and the mechanics will benefit from updated equipment. All colleagues will also benefit from a new canteen and breakout area.

Cannock

07

Key Facts Investment

c.£2.5m

in total

Site size

5.75 acres Office space (Northgate Vehicle Hire)

480sq/m Office space (Van Monster)

157sq/m Workshop space

1056sq/m Proposed Reception Desks at Cannock

We ha have an exciting new aapprenticeship partnership with partne Mercedes-Benz. Read Merce about it on page 16.

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

driven / summer 2011

summer 2011 | issue 03

In the back office, the environment will be designed specifically to take into account all roles from administration, rental and workshop. Office functions will be taken out of sight of the customer and moved to an open plan area where colleagues from all departments can work together, improving communication and, as a result, operational performance.

We are giving our colleagues a working environment that allows them to carry out their jobs effectively and give our customers an experience which is unrivalled


CRM update

08

Relationship Building How many marketing plans talk about improving customer communication? How many talk about adding value to the customer experience? How many talk about up-to-date customer information? How many actually work?

In the Spring issue of Driven, Northgate was approaching the final development stages of a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system. The pilot stage is now well under way in the East Midlands with the new CRM system fully enabled to capture information from suspects (those identified as potential customers), and prospects, right through to active customers. The key to the success of the new system is based around two things. Firstly, information being stored in one place, accessible by all key business stakeholders including sales teams, marketing and operations. Secondly, the transparency it gives to the activity of all sales and account management teams. Tony Anderson, Commercial Project Manager, said: “In making sure we are managing customers’ expectations at all times, the ability to easily track the progress or status of any customer or prospect is invaluable. “In simple terms, the system operates by scheduling tasks in electronic diaries of sales and account management teams. This gives clear deadlines for which task needs to be done and takes much of the admin ‘self-management’ away from those in the field.” The process begins at stage one when a suspect is identified. The suspect data is cleansed and qualified by the Northgate telemarketing team prior to it being passed to the local business unit sales team. In stage two, an appointment is scheduled for a member of the sales team to carry out a fact finding exercise to understand the needs of that potential customer’s business.

driven / summer 2011

From the information we are continuously collecting about our customers we will also be able to develop a better understanding of their business and become more proactive in our approach

A key addition to the technology behind the new CRM system is the mobile PDA. During the fact finding, and indeed any further face-to-face customer contact, all information can be recorded electronically in a business review document which has a custom developed set of drop down menus. The recorded information is updated live onto the main CRM system, removing the need for duplication of work and time consuming data input at the end of each day. This in turn maximises the time that the sales force and account management teams can spend with customers as they have the benefit of a mobile office. For customers, any service issues can be recorded straight away on the mobile PDAs. A resolution deadline is also agreed ensuring that customer expectations are managed and Northgate is totally accountable for delivery. These issues are also scheduled in the diaries of personnel in the relevant hire location departments to review within minutes of it being recorded. Tony continues: “With this level of information we can monitor and measure the activity of the sales teams and account management teams and maintain more regular customer contact.


CRM update

Gareth Jones, Commercial Director, tells us why it’s not the only answer. “CRM sounds good, and in many organisations is used as a faceless system to drive businesses productivity, often at the expense rather than to the benefit of their customers. But this one is different. “How? Because it’s been built from scratch and developed recognising the needs and requirements of our customers. Customers want us to communicate with them better. They want us to call them back, keep them updated and do what we say we are going to do. They want contact on a regular basis and face-to-face time, not always on issues but sometimes just so that they can tell us how it’s going. “And our commercial sales force is the same. They just want to see and speak to their customers. The Northgate CRM system allows them to do this. Every visit is recorded and documented, yes the statistics are important, but not as important as the information that we will be able to electronically send to the person who needs to deal with it.

“From the information we are continuously collecting about our customers we will also be able to develop a better understanding of their business and become more proactive in our approach.” In the pilot stage there is also something called the ‘pipeline’. This allows Northgate to predict changes in fleet utilisation across the group, not just in numbers but also in type of vehicle. With this information, it will be able to distribute its available fleet in line with predicted needs, therefore reducing the time required to react to customer demands.

“The system will also be used to plan for demand. As availability of vehicles gets scarcer within the market place, the ability to have one in the right place at the right time is becoming all important. In the future 'guess work' will be replaced by real information on who, what, when, where, and why. “CRM won’t ever replace our people, so we still have to work hard to make sure that our teams are right - focused and motivated individuals who are well informed through effective communication and well trained for the task in hand. “I am massively excited about this development. Anything that allows us to get information to become more effective and efficient and spend more time talking to and visiting our customers is a winner for me.”

Turn to page 19 to see how we are developing new customer service standards.

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

driven / summer 2011

09 summer 2011 | issue 03

Will it be the answer to all customer needs?


editorial feature

The new

308

WITH GROUNDBREAKING CO2 EMISSIONS OF JUST 98G/KM, STUNNING EXTERIOR STYLING AND A HOST OF TECHNOLOGY OPTIONS, IT’S DIFFICULT TO KNOW WHERE TO START WITH THE NEW 308

E

legant, efficient and bursting with character, the new 308 demands your full attention and is available to order now. Whether you focus on its impressively economical n em missions credentials, or its striking new design approach, there is much to appreciate. the The biggest impact of Peugeot’s 308, however, must be its phenomenal environmental message. Emissions have been reduced across the whole of the new 308 range due to the optimisation of all engine options and Peugeot’s innovative e-HDi Stop and Start technology. In fact, the 308 e-HDi 112 EGC* option boasts one of the lowest CO2 emissions in its segment, from 98g/km, which will have a noticeable impact on fuel consumption and BIK taxation. This engine option is available with a six-speed manual gearbox or a six-speed electronically controlled manual gearbox (EGC). So how has this impressive reduction in emissions in the new 308 been achieved? Much can be attributed to Peugeot’s innovative e-HDi Stop and Start technology, which puts the engine into standby when the vehicle is at a standstill (at traffic lights, for example), automatically restarting when the driver accelerates away. This not only results in a reduction in CO2 emissions but also ensures maximum fuel efficiency in urban areas, improving fuel consumption by up to 15%.

However, as you can see on the opposite page, there are other design elements that also play an important contribution... FEATURING THE NEW FACE OF PEUGEOT Now available to order, the 308 will also feature the new face of Peugeot, with a refined front grille, creating a modern and chic look, complemented by rear styling around the lights, including day/night light guides and LED integration in the fog area. This stylish new look is further improved by a Sports Rear Bumper and alloy wheels. All models feature air conditioning, Electronic Stability Programme (ESP), ABS, front and rear electric windows as standard. The 308 also has a hugely desirable interior, with the highest quality fit and finish. The new range integrates all the latest Peugeot styling elements seen on the new 508 and is available in three body types – Hatchback, CC and SW – and four multi-model trim levels: Access, SR, Active and Allure. A range-topping hatchback and CC THP 200 model will also be available in a single GT trim level. Such specification must come at a price, you’d imagine. But a key element in the development of this new range was to ensure great value. And, despite the increased specification and enhanced technology, the new 308 starts at only £15,245 on the road.


editorial feature

THE JOURNEY TO 98g To ensure the new 308 e-HDi 112 EGC* is as a environmentally efficient as possible, Peugeot has ensured that all factors affecting CO2 emissions have been optimised. These include:

e-HDi and Stop and Start technology

4g SAVED

THE BIGGEST IMPACT OF PEUGEOT’S NEW 308, HOWEVER, IS ITS PHENOMENAL ENVIRONMENTAL MESSAGE

*The 98g/km of CO2 version of the e-HDi EGC will go into production in July 2011.

Improved aerodynamic styling

2g SAVED

1g SAVED

Advanced Energy Saver tyres

New generation electric energy supply

1g SAVED

1g MORE INFORMATION Contact Peugeot’s Fleet Centre on 024 7688 4644 or compare the 308 to other vehicles at www.peugeotcompare.co.uk.

SAVED

Sleep mode controlling the power steering


vehicle hire website

New Website is a Real Hit

12

Northgate has really taken a hit in the last 3 months, but everyone is smiling. Why? Because the new Northgate Vehicle Hire website has launched and already the company is seeing the reward for months of hard work! Visitors, retail bookings and business van hire requests are all up. In May 2011 there was a 30% increase in visitors to the website and a further 4% in June. These additional visitors have contributed towards a 12% increase in online retail business and a 19% increase in business enquiries. Much of this success is a result of improved navigation, more engaging and relevant information as well as a new SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) strategy which leads visitors directly to the information they need. The ultimate aim of SEO is to get your company on the first page of Google and similar search engines when people search using terms related to a product, service or business. Northgate’s new SEO strategy is now delivering higher page rankings, with many more page one positions, following searches by visitors using specifically selected keywords. Carolyn Lee, Digital Manager, said: “Ensuring your website is search engine friendly is one of the most important elements of digital marketing. We need to be on the front page of Google for everyone to find us. When they do find our site they immediately see the benefits of our flexible business van hire product, Norflex, and they can easily contact our friendly customer service colleagues for a quote by phone or by completing a 'contact us' form.” The main areas that Northgate is concentrating its SEO efforts on are: •

Ensuring the website is search engine friendly through its page structure and relevancy to the user

Creating more engaging content that is relevant to the customers who are searching, which includes recent business and industry news

Developing its online presence by partnering with relevant websites and redirecting traffic from these websites.

Northgate will continue to work towards achieving the top ranks in Google searches by ensuring the website is the most engaging, user friendly and content rich within the industry. Northgatevehiclehire.co.uk has also spread the word about Driven, with a number of visitors using the subscribe option to receive a copy. Driven welcomes all new readers.

driven / summer 2011


vehicle hire website

SEO - What does it all mean in English? 13 summer 2011 | issue 03

Ensuring your website te is search engine friendly is one of the most important elements of digital marketing. We need to o be on the front page of Google for everyone to o find us

Website Performance MAY 2011

30% 19% 12% call: 0844 8266 555

Key Facts OVER

INCREASE IN VISITORS

INCREASE IN BUSINESS ENQUIRIES

INCREASE IN ONLINE RETAIL BUSINESS

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

50% 21%

THE BIGGEST TRAFFIC SOURCE TO THE WEBSITE IS THROUGH GOOGLE ORGANIC (NATURAL LISTINGS)

THE MOST COMMON SEARCH TO FIND US ON GOOGLE IS 'NORTHGATE VEHICLE HIRE'

THE MOST VIEWED VEHICLE SPECIFICATION PAGE IS FOR A MEDIUM VAN. THE MOST VIEWED NORTHGATE PRODUCT IS VEHICLE MONITORING.

driven / summer 2011


workshop screens and PDAs

14

Efficiency Beyond the Fleet After 18 months, the Axis roll out is complete across Northgate and now the hard work can……begin. ‘Begin’ you say? That’s because the challenge of driving efficiency and improving communication are the focus of Northgate’s drive to improve customer service delivery.

Driver PDAs

One of the key pieces of new technology that has been introduced to the group are the PDAs. The successful pilot in the North West and East Anglia proved the value that these will bring to Northgate in driving efficiencies of simple tasks alone, including driver scheduling. Month on month the number of collection and deliveries using the PDAs has increased, and Northgate is in a position to roll out the technology in the main hubs of the remaining areas with all locations aiming to be active by the end of 2011. In total, 650 colleagues will be trained on the PDAs. Removing the need for time consuming paperwork, rental agreements can now be accessed electronically and sent to hire desks and customers immediately following delivery. On collection, the condition of vehicles can be recorded immediately, agreed with the customer and communicated to all parties electronically so the vehicle’s next movements can be planned or any necessary work can be scheduled in the workshop.

driven / summer 2011


workshop screens and PDAs Deliveries and Collections completed with the new PDAs COLLECTIONS DELIVERIES

117 MARCH:

96

The new Workshop booking and scheduling system, developed by Fleet Technique, went live across the group in June following initial pilots in the North West, Yorkshire and Humber last year.

COLLECTIONS DELIVERIES

846 APRIL:

521 COLLECTIONS

DELIVERIES

1061 MAY:

832 COLLECTIONS

DELIVERIES

1563

1204

This now gives Northgate access to multiple tools aimed at driving efficient and transparent working practices within the workshop network. Any job which is entered into the system is automatically allocated an ICME (recognised standard time) in time for the repair or service. Once the scheduler is populated, each technician can access the planned work for the day, via a touchscreen, and the anticipated time allowance for each job. The system also shows up-to-date workshop demand across the group therefore allowing Northgate to better manage customers and their own maintenance requirements. If a customer contacts their local workshop in order to schedule a service in another part of the country, this can be done immediately via the scheduler, without the need for internal phone calls.

We are a charitable bunch at Northgate. Check out what we've been doing on page 37.

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

driven / summer 2011

15 summer 2011 | issue 03

FEBRUARY:

Workshop Touchscreen


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customer service

A Clean Slate

19

At the launch of Northgate Vehicle Hire’s most important project to date, ‘hygiene factors’ were the main agenda but cleanliness was only the tip of the iceberg. When Northgate talks about hygiene standards it is focusing on the very basic levels of customer service that all of its customers expect. The project is being directed by Simon Ridley, Operations Director North, Charles Starr, Operations Director South and Gareth Jones, Commercial Director. Simon Ridley said: “This is one of the most important changes that our organisation has to deliver in 2011. Every company strives to exceed customer expectations, but without meeting the basic levels of service our customers expect, our energies elsewhere are wasted.” A number of Northgate colleagues from areas of the business such as operations, sales, Vehicle Solutions, credit control and commercial support have been asked to make up the project team which will deliver a blue print for a new set of ‘customer service standards.’ Together, they will look at all aspects of the customer journey, addressing every touch point to ensure that there is a consistent, and more importantly, deliverable level of service which sees the customers’ expectations met, managed and exceeded. Some of the ‘hygiene factors’ which will be reviewed are rentable standards for vehicles, cleanliness, delivery, servicing, legal compliance, paperwork, vehicle specifications and presentation of people and premises. Northgate understands that some of these areas cover a broad spectrum but nonetheless, they are truly focussed on ensuring that all undergo a thorough review to define a robust set of standards. Some of the issues discussed looked at better understanding customer expectations from the early contact and managing those expectations moving forward, setting minimum standards for vehicles ready for rent, improved internal communication to better channel customer requests and speed up issue resolution.

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

Every company strives to exceed customer expectations, but without meeting the basic levels of service our customers expect, our energies elsewhere are wasted

Raising the Mark with ICS In the last issue of ‘Driven’, a new partnership with the ICS (Institute of Customer Service) was announced. With the new partnership in place, the next phase is to build towards achieving the ICS ‘service mark’ which, when attained, will put us in the same league as leading brands such as Marks and Spencer, Nationwide, Churchill and many more. Members of the customer service project team have been selected to become ICS ‘practitioners’, with the responsibility of training other Northgate colleagues to deliver programmes through the business which will raise the levels of customer service to a standard required by the ICS. These standards will then be assessed by practitioners from other ICS member companies and when achieved, Northgate will be awarded the mark.

Our colleagues have been doing a lot of training recently. See page 25

driven / summer 2011

summer 2011 | issue 03

Anyone listening at the door of the ‘Energy’ conference room at the Village Hotel in Nottingham, may have been forgiven for thinking that Northgate had moved into the commercial cleaning business. But they would be wrong.


advertorial feature

20

Comline Auto Parts is the proud supplier of braking parts to Northgate Vehicle Hire for UK and Spain. Comline offers Northgate an “OE matching” replacement product at an affordable price ensuring the parts needed are always available. Flexibility is key, supported by no minimum order values and a 24 hour guaranteed delivery service to the whole of the UK and Ireland from its 90,000 sq ft Luton warehouse. Be it Allied Nippon brake pads, or Comline branded discs & accessories, Comline guarantees supply. As standard, a committed and proactive Account Manager is allocated offering product technical support and business solutions from depot to head office level. Comline first started to supply Northgate more than six years ago after extensive trials with Northgate’s Technical Department. Independent, in-house & AVE (Actual Vehicle Environment) testing proves the Allied Nippon brake pad has superior wear characteristics as well as excellent braking performance exceeding European R90 standards. With the importance of Northgate’s place in the vehicle rental market Comline understands that new development is a key part of success. Comline’s partnership with original equipment brake pad manufacturer Allied Nippon ensured that it was the first in the aftermarket to have the 2006 Mercedes Sprinter (ADB21555) and 2006 Ford Transit (ADB21512) brake pads available offering exclusive supply to Northgate when first stocked. Thomas Hedges Comline’s Account Manager to Northgate comments “The business relationship with Northgate has grown from strength to strength over the past 6 years. We have tailor made our service ensuring we offer solutions to specifically suit the manner in which Northgate’s business is run. We understand that each business has different requirements and that a personal touch is essential for the running of a profitable and sustainable business.”

Comline Auto Parts, Unit B1 Luton Enterprise Park, Sundon Park Road, Luton, LU3 3GU Tel: 01582 578888 Email: sales@comline.uk.com Web: www.comline.uk.com www.comlineracing.com

driven / summer 2011

The business relationship with Northgate has grown from strength to strength over the past 6 years

COMLINE offers Northgate: •

Next day delivery with no minimum order value

Dedicated Northgate Account Manager

Full product warranty

Technical support

100% cover of Northgate’s braking needs

Please visit us at www.comline.uk.com for our full online catalogue or contact Thomas directly on: 07876 748439


advertorial feature

22 FCL (Filtration Control Limited) is the contracted supplier of all filtration products to Northgate Vehicle Hire in the UK and Spain and has supplied the group for over two years. FCL has been trading for over 28 years and specialises in supplying filters to all industries, with vast experience and focus in supplying automotive and light commercial end user fleets. We supply all filters direct, from the oil, air and fuel to the pollen filters and even the hydraulic and transmission on the heavier vehicles. We offer one point of contact for all filter requirements from one supplier, coupled with competitive pricing and partnered with the leading filter manufacturers, such as WIX Filters, Mann & Hummel, Fleetguard, UFI and Mahle.

FCL produces and supplies the Innovative ECO2 Air Filters, which Northgate has already adopted and standardised across its fleet of Mercedes-Benz Sprinters, with other models being introduced all the time, such as the Volkswagen Transporter and Citroen Berlingo.

We operate a comprehensive service package which incorporates the following key elements:

The ECO2 Filter offers fantastic benefits such as the following: •

Longer Life, 100,000 miles or 24 months without change

Reduced maintenance time / vehicle down time

Easier fitment

High dust holding capacity with same efficiency as traditional paper filter

Full warranty package

Potential fuel savings due to increase air flow efficiency

Regular site visits from FCL

Fits into existing air housing without modification

Guaranteed supply of filter reference ordered, or alternative supplied at no expense to customer.

Technology has been used in the bus, train and truck market for over 28 years. We have even fitted on tanks as standard

The range covers over 3,000 models and are priced attractively for fleets and manufacturers.

Fixed pricing for contract duration

Next day delivery with no minimum order quantity or value

Nationwide delivery next day to every site

Full technical support with dedicated account manager

• • •

To find out more about FCL and ECO2 Filters, you can visit our website at: www.filtrationcontrol.com www.eco2filtration.co.uk or contact us at: Tel (01604) 70 77 50 or contact: Wayne Stevens on (07967) 215058

driven / summer 2011


procurement for housing

Working in Partnership

23

Northgate is the only vehicle hire company represented on the framework and it has recently secured an agreement to have short term rental rates displayed to members on the PfH website. Kimberly Meachin from PfH said: “The relationship between PfH and Northgate is mutually rewarding and our relationship is very much a two-way street. “PfH provides Northgate access with an advanced route to the housing market place, and at the same time, PfH can enhance the value of our framework to Members with Northgate’s increased levels of service and the strength of their brand. “Northgate’s experience of delivering vehicles to the social housing sector, combined with the supplier and contract management processes undertaken by PfH, ensures that Members will receive a first class customer experience.” Northgate’s first PfH rental customer is Autism Initiatives. Founded in the early 1970s in the Merseyside region, Autism Initiatives is a parent-led charity and a member of both the Autism Alliance and the Confederation of Service Providers for People with Autism (CoSPPA). The charity supports sufferers on the autism spectrum and their families. Autism Initiatives is able to access Northgate's rental pricing without having to go to tender as they are a preferred supplier on the PfH Framework. The Charity has national coverage and is now able to access the Northgate national network. Dave Kiggins, Transport Manager for Autism Initiatives said: “Northgate is able to give us a nationwide coverage so that all of our branches are able to rent vehicles at competitive prices from a reputable source. The central administration allows us to have up to date management information. This is a new relationship but we are sure that it will be a great advantage to have nationwide reliability.”

The relationship between PfH and Northgate is mutually rewarding and our relationship is very much a two-way street

One Vision As an approved supplier to PfH members, Northgate Vehicle Hire has just provided One Vision Housing with 59 new vehicles. One Vision Housing is a major ‘not for profit’ organisation which provides social housing in the Merseyside region. It chose Northgate based on the value it could deliver including access to a diverse fleet and the flexibility that Northgate provides. The first 59 vehicles were presented at the beginning of July along with another 17 on a short term basis with the possibility of further vehicles in the future.

Nick Cash (right), Northgate Head of Public Sector, presenting Paul Broadbent of One Vision Housing with the vehicles in Bootle, Merseyside.

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

driven / summer 2011

summer 2011 | issue 03

Procurement for Housing (PfH) is a national procurement organisation dedicated to social housing groups. It provides a procurement solution for over 700 UK social housing providers, managing the supply of over £1.5m of goods and services every week.


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training

Quarter one has been one of the busiest for the Northgate training team as they work towards completing all training linked to the roll-out of Axis. Ian Dunn, Training Manager, commented: “Thanks must go to all involved. Putting together a training programme like this obviously needs support from many areas of the business. This has probably been the biggest training exercise the company has been involved in. “IT were fantastic in helping set up and test the training equipment at each venue and dealing with their IT department, ensuring connectivity. They were always responsive whenever a problem arose. “Each area senior management team was fantastic in ensuring all colleagues were able to attend. And most of all, our colleagues from around the group from hire desk, workshop and finance who attended and gave a 100% commitment to the training.”

November 2009

Axis training for rental, finance and workshop began with the initial training for the Stockton staff, who carried out the pilot for the Axis project.

September 2010

Training completed in East Anglia.

January 2011

Training completed in North East, North West and Yorkshire and Humber.

July 2010 The first off-site

training centre was set up for East Anglia with three training rooms (hire desk, workshop and finance) in a Regus centre in Cambourne (Cambridge).

October 2010

Training completed in East Midlands, West Midlands and South West and Wales.

April 2011

Training completed in South, South East, Home Counties and Scotland.

Management Success The final round of management training for hire desk managers and workshop managers was completed on 27 June with all participants successful. The programme, initiated by Simon Ridley and Charles Starr began in 2010. The sessions covered change management, people management, performance improvement, customer services and management principles. The sessions were facilitated by Tony Hodson, Lee McLane, Steve McPherson and Ian Dunn with Simon Ridley in attendance at the northern sessions and Charles Starr in the southern regions. All sessions were very well attended and received by all delegates. In total over 100 managers attended each module and it is hoped this is a platform for further management development throughout the group.

Colleagues Train ained in 2011

RENTAL

FINANCE

WORKSHOP

FINES

266 123 277 29 Total Training Days = 4,211

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

driven / summer 2011

25 summer 2011 | issue 03

100% Commitment to Training


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editorial feature


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MOT facilities

Testing,Testing!

29

All equipment is state of the art and supplied by Tecalemit, the UK’s leading MOT bay supplier. It comprises two ramps, brake rollers, smoke tester and headlight beam tester. Simon Ridley, Operations Director North, said: “The main reason we have invested in a new MOT station is to improve our service provision to our customers. It improves the way we can handle incoming requests and allows us to take control of an element of the supply chain for which we have historically had to rely on third parties. “This will allow us to be more efficient in managing customer MOTs and allow better planning therefore minimising the disruption to our customers’ business.” As well as the new equipment, Northgate has invested in staff training, with two of its Darlington based vehicle technicians gaining industry leading qualifications. Shane Scott and Darren Johnston undertook a three day training course in Newcastle upon Tyne under the instruction of VOSA (Vehicle and Operator Services Agency). Following an on-site assessment they have both been awarded the qualifications which allows them to carry out all MOT testing in Darlington. There are plans to increase the network of MOT bays with a further two already planned for the group, therefore further improving Northgate’s offering.

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

The main reason we have invested in a new MOT station is to improve our service provision to our customers

We take pride in our vehicles. See how much on page 31

driven / summer 2011

summer 2011 | issue 03

In June, Northgate Vehicle Hire opened its first MOT Bay at its Darlington hire depot marking another step to further improving its service proposition.


Vehicle Hire

Do you need additional vehicles? Get Flexible Vehicle Hire.

With us you can add to, take away or change vehicles in your fleet whenever you want! • You also get 24/7 365 breakdown, recovery and replacement support from our national network • You can tailor your vehicle to suit your needs – tow bars, beacons, roof racks and even your own branded livery • It’s a risk free vehicle solution with no capital outlay, no depreciation and no residual value risk.

So give us a call on 0844 8266 555 or visit northgatevehiclehire.co.uk


10 things you didn't know about

•••

Northgate’s Vehicle Rentable Standards Since the rebrand, Northgate is now aiming to deliver a consistent experience to every customer across the whole of the UK with a set of defined rentable standards. To achieve this, they have carried out working sessions with colleagues and customers to develop a benchmark for ‘ready to rent’ vehicles which goes above and beyond the basic minimum standard set by the BVRLA. The clear set of standards will ensure that all hire locations will present vehicles to customers in the same way every time. Charles Starr, Operations Director South, said: “Our customers demand high quality vehicles. This is expected from a company of our size and we have always ensured that the vehicle is capable of carrying out the job for which it is needed. However, with the new ‘Rentable Standards Agreement’, we are taking this to another level to ensure our customers get an experience beyond

their expectations and with a level of consistency no matter which location they hire from.” On 16 May 2011 Northgate began a trial in the South West using the rentable standards. They are measuring the impact and calculating the cost and investment needed in each vehicle to ensure they meet the new criteria. The team have already experienced improved efficiency when moving vehicles around the different sites in the region with vehicles now in an immediately rentable condition when they arrive at their destination. This is another demonstration of how Northgate is investing to deliver the best service and experience for their customers and demonstrating that Northgate represents quality.

We are also raising standards at our depots. Did you see page 6?

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

The Vehicle Rentable Standards The ‘Vehicle Rentable Standards’ document covers all maintenance, checks, pre-rental work and service scheduling a vehicle should undergo before being released to a customer.

01 02 03

All vehicles must be roadworthy, safe and unlikely to break down.

04

Electrical and mechanical parts will be checked to ensure they are working such as lamps, exterior bulbs and that there are no faults or leaks.

05

All bodywork has a minimum accepted allowance of scratches and dents.

06

No cracked screens or chips that are developing into cracks are allowed, especially chips that obscure a driver’s vision.

07 08

Aerials will be present and in working order.

09

The interior will have all vehicle controls operational, with no unsightly damage.

10

All vehicles will be cleaned to an acceptable standard with no detectable smells.

All warning stickers will be present and in the correct place. Wheels and tyres will be safe and above the legal limit including the spare.

No vehicle will be released to a customer without a full pre-rental inspection.

driven / summer 2011

31 summer 2011 | issue 03

10 things you didn't know about•••


editorial feature

SPECIALIST DEALERS APPOINTED

100% ELEC TRIC iOn NOW ON THE ROAD A NEW AGE DAWNS FOR MODERN, URBAN TRANSPORT – AND YOU COULD BE PART OF IT... The recent launches of the new 308 and 508, plus the future launch of the 3008 diesel hybrid, show that Peugeot has its eyes firmly fixed on a low-emissions future. And there’s one other vehicle that’s already been making an impact on our roads. The UK’s first 100% electric iOn was delivered at the start of 2011 to EDF Energy, signalling the beginning of a new age of electric vehicles. Ever-increasing fuel costs and the need to reduce CO2 emissions have made electric cars a viable alternative option for modern urban transport. The iOn is one of the latest generation of electric cars in the UK and also the first Peugeot vehicle to qualify for a £5,000 grant, under the Government’s OLEV scheme, which supports the introduction of electric vehicles onto our roads. Eric Salomon, Energy Field Services Director at EDF Energy, said: “We are delighted to add the first Peugeot iOn in the UK to our fleet. It fits in perfectly with our ambitions to provide low carbon solutions.” The iOn – a four-door, four-seat vehicle – has a potential range of 93 miles and can be recharged from a standard electric plug in around six hours, or via a quick charger in under an hour. With average running costs

estimated at £1.72* per 93 miles, the iOn’s energy bill is hard to beat, regardless of which recharging mode is used. Other savings include: no petrol or diesel costs, no congestion charges (where applicable), saving the £1,696 annual charge in London, and no parking charges (where applicable, for example in the City of Westminster), giving potential savings of £1,939 per year (£10 x 230 days of parking, less admin fee). The total potential annual saving, due to using an electric vehicle over a conventional internal combustion powered car, could therefore amount to over £5,400. *Based on the EDF Energy Eco 20:20 tariff in London.

As Government Governmen rnment ment suppo ssupport and m media and public interest interest terest in tere ter i electric cars continue nu to o incr increase incre increase, Peugeot has ap ppointed ointed 22 2 of its existing dealers rss, located l ted across the UK, to sell and d serv s vice ce its 10 100% electric e iOn. Thesse ‘specialist’ specialist’ pecialist’ ecialist’ dea de dealers ealers are all geo ge eographically align n ned to the e ‘Plugged-in P Places’,’, w which will receive eceive Government Govern over su support up to build the necessary char charging ging ing infrastructure to support electr electri ctric ctri vehicles. Each ‘specialist’ dea ale aler will have available ailabl ilab a Peugeo ot iOn demonstrator, or, r, a de dedicated electric ele elec vehicle chargin rging rgin gin point, specially trained staff afff and aff an all necessary specialist servici cin ing equipment. To help custo sto t tomers make the most off the e Go Government Plug-In Car arr Grant Gra Gr of £5,000, Peugeot has dev eveloped veloped a bespoke leasing offer forr the he new w iOn iOn, which is available on a four-year, ear, 4 40,000-mile 40,000-m 40,000-mi personal lease ease ase scheme fo for £415ˆ per month h plu plus VAT with zero z ze deposit. This in ncludes the Government Plug-In Grant, plus full warranty Plug ( (vehicle, battery and drivetrain),, and a servicing for the e four-year four-yea period period.

To find yo your nearest iOn dealership, go to www.peugeot.co.uk/ iondealers ˆMonthly rentals quoted are one rental in advance followed by 47 monthly rentals. This includes full warranty (vehicle, battery and drivetrain) and servicing for the four-year period. All rentals are subject to VAT. Annual mileage is 10,000 miles per annum (including maintenance). Business Users only. Written quotations available on request from Peugeot Contract Hire, Quadrant House, Princess Way, Redhill, RH1 1QA. Price, offers and information may be changed at any time without notice at its discretion. Offers subject to availability. Please contact Peugeot Quoteline on 0845 313 3810 for full terms and conditions.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT PEUGEOT’S 100% ELECTRIC iOn, GO TO WWW.PEUGEOT.CO.UK/BUSINESS OR CALL THE FLEET SALES TEAM ON 024 7688 4644


In the Van with

•••

In the Van with•••

33

Carolyn Lee from Northgate Marketing recently spoke to Steve Galvin, one of our mobile technicians working out of the Bolton depot in the North West. Carolyn: What time do you start in the morning? Steve: Usually between the hours of 7am and 8am. Carolyn: Where are you based? Steve: I’m based out of the Bolton depot and deliver and collect vehicles to and from businesses in the area. Carolyn: What are the tools of your trade? Do you use one of the new PDAs? Steve: We were the first depot to start testing PDAs and we have had them ever since I started working for Northgate. It makes much more sense than time consuming paperwork. Carolyn: Is communication with your depot easier with PDAs? Steve: Yes. If you had the wrong paperwork for a vehicle when you arrived on site, say a 7.5 tonne vehicle instead of a Transit then you would have to go back to the depot and get the right details. With a PDA, the office can upload the information onto my PDA in an instant. This saves a lot of time and money in fuel costs. Carolyn: How does the PDA work? Steve: We get our schedule uploaded in the morning and we pick up and deliver vehicles to customers as detailed on the PDA. We ask customers to sign the PDAs which means that the collection or delivery is recorded onto the central system. There is no need for paper or additional time that would be used inputting the information into the system later in the day. It’s all real time information.

We were the first depot to start testing PDAs, we have had them ever since I started working for Northgate. It makes much more sense than time consuming paper work

Carolyn: How has the rebrand to one business affected your role? Steve: It’s much easier and the company is much more professional as Northgate. Carolyn: What are the main reasons for driving the Northgate vehicles? Steve: There are a lot of reasons for collecting and delivering customers’ vehicles - generally for servicing, collecting as soon as the customer has finished with the vehicle and delivering new vehicles when the customer wants them, you name it we do it all. Sometimes we attend breakdowns when the vehicle can be driven back to the depot. Recently there was a problem with the central locking, so I was asked to collect it instead of the breakdown vehicle as I could drive the van back to the depot for repair. This frees up the time for the breakdown vehicles as it’s a much more efficient use of resource to use a driver. Carolyn: How often do your plans change? Steve: Sometimes there are ‘rush jobs’ where a customer needs a new vehicle or they need to off hire and our PDAs are updated with the job.

Carolyn: Do you use satellite navigation? Steve: I use Google maps on the PDA, another feature that helps in my job and you can turn the sound off. I don’t really travel a great distance; I always stay within a 40 mile radius of the Bolton depot. Carolyn: What is a typical day’s journey? Steve: It varies daily. Yesterday for example we started at Bolton in the morning, went to Blackpool and on the way back went to Preston and Nelson before getting back to Bolton for lunch and then just stayed local. The PDAs definitely make for easier planning to make sure the 18 drivers are always carrying out the most effective journey schedule. Steve Galvin - Mobile Technician from the Bolton depot.

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

driven / summer 2011

summer 2011 | issue 03

A Northgate driver


NVS sales conference

Gearing up for Future Success

35

Members of the NVS management team take in one of the days presentations.

The meeting provided a valuable opportunity for the NVS management team to recognise the successes of the previous year and review the opportunities which Northgate faces through its trade and retail sales channels. The conference was chaired by Gary Sullivan, Managing Director of NVS who began by highlighting the strong results from the previous financial year. Although it was important to do this, the focus quickly moved towards planning for another challenging year ahead. Also present were Bob Contreras, the Chief Executive of Northgate plc, John Fleet, UK Asset Director and Jonathan Smith, IT Director. Gary Sullivan said: “To have Northgate board directors present at the conference highlights the valuable contribution of NVS to the overall group performance. But more importantly, their constructive observations challenged us to look at the way we operate, to ensure we are doing so under ‘best practice’. All the NVS management team benefited from their contribution.” The marketing team presented a review of the previous year’s activity with an open discussion as to the success or otherwise of the different types of campaign, as well as the different types of media used. The management team undertook various workshops and were also asked for their ideas in defining the business’s proposition. They also discussed what the business offers customers which will make it stand out from the competition in an increasingly crowded marketplace. Gary Sullivan commented: “We have to work hard to build on past success and part of this is to step back and look at our proposition and how we position ourselves against our competitors. The marketing team are working on various new ideas which, with the support of the management team, will help us achieve our goals and deliver more success for the group.”

We have to work hard to build on past success and part of this is to step back and look at our proposition and how we position ourselves against our competitors

Gary Sullivan, Managing Director NVS, addresses the management team.

Well that's nearly all. Another busy quarter for Northgate!

Other group exercises and workshops based around vehicle standards, fleet and asset management in life and at end of life were undertaken, with plenty of new ideas discussed.

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

driven / summer 2011

summer 2011 | issue 03

The second annual Northgate Vehicle Sales (NVS) management meeting and workshop was held on 23 May at the DeVere Belton Woods hotel in Grantham.


movers and shakers

36

Movers and Shakers Position Changes Chris Muir WAS UK Finance Director NOW GROUP FINANCE DIRECTOR Terry Ottey WAS Regional Finance Manager (Southern England & IRE) NOW UK FINANCE MANAGER (UK & IRE) Andy Riley WAS Fleet Management Business Development Manager NOW COMMERCIAL MANAGER NON RENTAL PRODUCTS (INTERIM)

First Place Stacey Williams, South West and West Midlands Second Place James Bunn, Home Counties and East Anglia Third Place Craig Wells, Yorkshire, Humber and East Midlands Fourth Place Mel Eaton, South Fifth Place Steve Fairchild, South

driven / summer 2011

In May, Darrell Storey, Grimsby Branch Manager, reached 25 years service with Northgate Vehicle Hire and was presented with a long service award.

National Sales Highlights

We would like to thank Darrell for his hard work and commitment to the business and look forward to many more years to come.

We must also look back at this financial year which saw some outstanding commercial performances across all of our products. In particular recognition needs to be given to the top annual performers in the following areas: Business Unit Vehicle Hire Sales Mel Eaton National Sales New Business James Walsh National Sales Public Sector Bernard Tomkins Overall Account Management Performance Kelly Fisher

Hire League Top 5 The sales leagues produced this year have been a massive success and the individuals listed within this quarter have performed remarkably well. Not only have they recognised fantastic performance throughout the course of the year, they have spurred the teams on to out-do and out-sell each other which not only demonstrates their skills, but is massively beneficial to the business. Well done to all!

Congratulations

From left to right Dave Howarth (Regional Manager, Yorkshire, Humberr and East Midlands) Darrell Storey (Branch Manager, Grimsby), Simon Ridley (Operations Director North)

Northgate Sales Leagues Retail League for last 3 months

Trade League for last 3 months

March - May 2011

March - May 2011

The Van Monster team retail approximately 300 premium vehicles a month to small businesses and the public. Here are Northgate’s top sales people from March to May 2011.

The Northgate Vehicle Sales teams trade around 3,000 vehicles per month to businesses and traders. Here are Northgate’s top sales people from March to May 2011.

First Place Paul Armitage - 80

First Place Brian Marlborough - 751

Second Place Hugh Roberts - 78

Second Place Nigel Gray - 654 Third Place Jean Kershaw - 377

Third Place Jonathan Keddie - 58


charity

It's All for a Good Cause

37

Beach to Beach

Caledonian Challenge

Race for Life

Mark Emond, Regional Sales Manager for Home Counties and East Anglia, strapped on his cycling helmet along with 4 friends, as they attempted to cycle 140 miles in the Beach to Beach Cycle.

Jonathan Pearce, Campaign Manager for Northgate, took on the Caledonian Challenge in June, along with 3 friends, raising money for the Scottish Community Foundation.

In July, Jane Forshaw, Victoria Lloyd, Lynda Jones, Andrea Cowburn and her sister Liz Cowburn took part in the Bolton 5km Race for Life.

Raising money for Asthma UK, they began in Brighton and finished the following day in Bournmouth. So far the team has raised nearly £3,000 for the charity. Mark said: “It was really good fun despite the hard work. There were a few funny walks in the days after the event, but raising that amount of money for a great cause makes all the pain worth it. We would like to pass on our thanks to all who kindly sponsored us. The support from friends, family and colleagues alike was tremendous.”

The event is a 54 mile walk in 24 hours, along the West Highland Way from Gairlochy to Tyndrom. The walk began at 9.00am on Saturday 11 June, with the target of finishing before 9.00am the following morning. Jonathan commented: “It was the biggest challenge we have ever set ourselves – fighting huge blisters and sleep deprivation. We crossed the line in a time of 23 hours and 27 minutes. In that time we only had just over 2 hours of rest. The relief of crossing the line brought a few tears I have to say!” So far the team, named the Old Martonians, have raised nearly £3,000 with the help of many Northgate colleagues and supplying partners and a raffle in the head office.

Beach to Beach: From left to right Alex Pinchbeck, Rob Wellstead, Paul Read ead Mark Emond, Andrew Screech

Caledonian Challenge: From left to right Alistair Niven (support crew), Jonathan Pearce, Phil Addicott, Tommo Tomlinson, Michael Houston, Sandy Houston (support crew) w)

call: 0844 8266 555

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

With a target of £1,500 they raised in excess of £1,800. Jane explained the reason for taking part: “Last September, Lynda’s sister was diagnosed with breast cancer. Following surgery and a course of chemotherapy and radiotherapy she is now in remission. “Sadly Andrea’s cousin was diagnosed with the same type of cancer but is still going through chemotherapy following major surgery.” Despite the heat, all the runners achieved new personal best times. Liz finished the 5km in 28 minutes, Vicky in 30 minutes, Andrea and Lynda in 34 minutes and Jane in 36 minutes. Jane continued: “It was quite an emotional day, not only because of how cancer has affected us on a personal level, but also each person who took part had 'who I am running for' on their backs - just reading some of the messages was very touching and also very motivating.”

If you have been involved in any kind of event to raise money for charity then send your story to driven@northgateplc.com

“Race for Life” Before and after: From left to right Liz Cowburn, Jane Forshaw, Victoria Lloyd, Andrea Cowburn and Lynda Joness

driven / summer 2011

summer 2011 | issue 03

The charitable activity has continued to flourish at Northgate over the last few months with a number of colleagues pushing themselves to their limits for good causes.


welcome - Benz van experience Mercedes

38

Northgate and Customers Hit the Skids! 120 people, 60 vans, two skid pans and one race track. Sounds like something from the final cut of a Top Gear episode. But far from that, in June, Northgate customers and colleagues learnt a lot about safety and technology at the Mercedes-Benz van experience at ProDrive near Kenilworth.

Northgate customers and colleagues tackle the 4x4 course

Representative from Bosch explains the benefits of the ESP technology

The purpose of the day for Mercedes-Benz was to showcase the new technologies, safety features and performance across their fleet of commercial vehicles. But more importantly, with a number of key customers present, it was an opportunity for Northgate to understand the importance of the featured products to their customers in order to help inform future fleet purchases. Gareth Jones, Commercial Director said: “As the UK’s largest commercial vehicle hire company we pride ourselves on the quality of our fleet. Although this was a fun day for all involved, it was also a valuable opportunity for us to understand the key factors which influence our customers’ vehicle choice. “So many manufacturers are developing new and more efficient engines, hybrids and ESP systems, but without understanding what influences the end user’s purchase decision, we can’t be sure if we need to refine our own fleet purchasing strategy.” The mix of activities across the day included an MPG challenge where guests had to achieve the highest MPG from two laps of the track in the new Vito. There was also an opportunity to test drive a number of other Mercedes-Benz vans with various payloads and trailers up to 3.5 tonnes. Later on in the day, guests were invited to tackle an off-road course with modified 4x4 Sprinters before literally ‘losing control’ on a skid pan - highlighting the potential dangers of vans without modern ESP systems. Gareth Jones continued: “At Northgate we are confident in the quality and safety of all vehicles in our fleet, and combined with technology such as our Vehicle Monitoring products and fleet management services we can ensure all of our customers meet their duty of care requirements.”

driven / summer 2011

...without understanding what influences the end user’s purchase decision, we can’t be sure if we need to refine our own fleet purchasing strategy

Guests enjoy breakfast before activities begin

Brake, the road safety charity who are a corporate partner of Northgate were also at ProDrive to present on their current activity to help reduce the number of accidents on our roads and bring in to focus what companies can do to help. For more information on the great work carried out by Brake visit www.brake.org.uk

The Winners! VITO MPG CHALLENGE Daniel Clowes, Provincial Logistics GUESS THE PRICE OF THE VITO WATER PUMP Daniel Clowes, Provincial Logistics BOSCH BRAKE DANCE Jane Legge, Northgate Vehicle Hire BUZZ WIRE CHALLENGE Vicky Lloyd, Northgate Vehicle Hire


vehicle hire locations

Scotland , NI & North East

Yorkshire, Humber & East Midlands

Glasgow, G33 4UN Tel: 0141 773 6300 Fax: 0141 773 6301

Wiltshire Road, Hull, HU4 6PA Tel: 01482 575 777 Fax: 01482 575 712

Clifton View, Broxburn, EH52 5NE Tel: 01506 858 508 Fax: 01506 858 507

Unit 34, Normanby Road, Scunthorpe, DN15 6AL Tel: 01724 844 435 Fax: 01724 278 585

Springkerse Road, Stirling, FK7 7SN Tel: 01786 471 555 Fax: 01786 474 822

352 - 366 Cleethorpe Road, Grimsby, DN31 3DH Tel: 01472 345 706 Fax: 01472 241 238

Unit 3b, Tyseal Base, Aberdeen, AB12 3AW Tel: 01224 216 540 Fax: 01224 216 541

Norflex House, Europa Link, Sheffield, S9 1XU Tel: 0114 243 5888 Fax: 0114 243 6238

27 Mallusk Road, Newtownabbey, Northern Ireland, BT36 4PP Tel: 028 9084 5330 Fax: 028 9084 5331

Warmsworth Road, Doncaster, DN4 0RR Tel: 01302 853 200 Fax: 01302 853 061

Chainbridge Road, Blaydon,NE21, 5ST Tel: 0191 499 0611 Fax: 0191 499 0612 Potter Street, Wallsend, NE28 6TZ Tel: 0191 234 7640 Fax: 0191 234 7641 Bowesfield Crescent Stockton-on-Tees, TS18 3BL Tel: 01642 603 732 Fax: 01642 601 966 23 Allington Way, Darlington, DL1 4QB Tel: 01325 461 125 Fax: 01325 356 530

North West Lostock Lane, Bolton, BL6 4BL Tel: 01204 668 843 Fax: 01204 696 953 Eagle Technology Park, Rochdale, OL11 1TQ Tel: 01706 718 844 Fax: 01706 525 751 Pear Mill Industrial Estate Stockport, SK6 2BP Tel: 0161 406 7472 Fax: 0161 406 9938 Kitling Road, Liverpool, L34 9JA Tel: 0151 545 5300 Fax: 0151 546 7494

Richardshaw Road, Pudsey, Leeds, LS28 6QW Tel: 0113 255 0441 Fax: 0113 257 1116 675 Leeds Road, Wakefield, WF1 2LU Tel: 01924 871 661 Fax: 01924 823 362 2 Barton Way, Chilwell, Nottingham, NG9 4BF Tel: 0115 925 5088 Fax: 0115 943 6302 Chester Park, Alfreton Road, Derby , DE21 4AS Tel: 01332 292 727 Fax: 01332 385 325 50 St. Ives Road Leicester, LE4 9FN Tel: 0116 246 0212 Fax: 0116 276 3195 Black Horse Lane, Lincoln, LN6 9UJ Tel: 01522 824 400 Fax: 01522 824 401 Northern Road, Newark, NG24 2EU Tel: 01636 679 080 Fax: 01636 610 949 372- 374 Harlaxton Road Grantham, NG31 7JK Tel: 01476 592 600 Fax: 01476 562 781

Home Counties & East Anglia

Target House, Thorpe Way Banbury, OX16 4TA Tel: 01295 265 432 Fax: 01295 267 643 Gatehouse Way, Aylesbury, HP19 8DB Tel: 01296 399 399 Fax: 01296 399 263 Unit 7, North Hinskey Lane, Oxford, OX2 0NR Tel: 01865 244 477 Fax: 01865 244 177 Europa Way, Ipswich, IP1 5DL Tel: 01473 240 321 Fax: 01473 747 800 Anson Road, Norwich, NR6 6ED Tel: 01603 416 411 Fax: 01603 424 086 Blackstone Road, Huntingdon, PE29 6EF Tel: 01480 414 144 Fax: 01480 456 299 Eastern Way Industrial Estate,, Bury St Edmunds, IP32 7AB Tel: 01284 762 888 Fax: 01284 725 546

South Lower William Street, Southampton, SO14 5QE Tel: 023 8021 8100 Fax: 023 8022 4294 Beta Way, Crabtree Road, Egham, TW20 8RE Tel: 01784 438 899 Fax: 01784 439 577 North Close, Aldershot, GU12 4DF Tel: 01252 322 202 Fax: 01252 338 161 Dundas Spur, Portsmouth, PO3 5QA Tel: 023 9262 1600 Fax: 023 9263 9696 Unit 10D Hopkinson Way, Andover, SP10 3LF Tel: 01264 360 222 Fax: 01264 334 237 6-8 Deacon Way, Reading, RG30 6AZ Tel: 0118 941 2041 Fax: 0118 945 2463 Mid Kent Business Park, Snodland, ME6 5UA Tel: 01634 244 400 Fax: 01634 244 499

Picow Farm Road, Runcorn, WA7 4JB Tel: 01928 590 000 Fax: 01928 564 777

Burners Lane South, Milton Keynes, MK11 3LT Tel: 01908 264 747 Fax: 01908 307 726

Folkestone West Station, Folkestone, CT20 3PA Tel: 01303 253 336 Fax: 01303 249 444

75 Appleby Road Kendal, LA9 6HE Tel: 01539 732 643 Fax: 01539 728 537

16 Gambrel Road, Westgate Industrial Estate, Northampton, NN5 5BB Tel: 01604 590 400 Fax: 01604 590 153

102 Beddington Lane, Croydon, CR0 4YX Tel: 020 8686 8088 Fax: 020 8686 2280

New Ford Road, Waltham Cross, EN8 7PD Tel: 01992 714 545 Fax: 01992 714 644

call: 0844 8266 555

10 Stephenson Way, Crawley, RH10 1TL Tel: 01293 522 225 Fax: 01293 612 030

click: northgatevehiclehire.co.uk

London

Long Reach Road, Barking, IG11 0JR Tel: 020 8507 8900 Fax: 020 8507 8989

South West & Midlands Fourth Way, Avonmouth, Bristol, BS11 8DL Tel: 0117 916 3070 Fax: 0117 982 5872 5 Leigham Business Units, Exeter, EX2 8HY Tel: 01392 822 000 Fax: 01392 822 001 Armada Works, Emma Place Plymouth, PL1 3QT Tel: 01752 600 006 Fax: 01752 660 364 Lamby Way, Cardiff, CF3 2EQ Tel: 029 2077 6400 Fax: 029 2077 6401 Unit 6c, Lion Way, Swansea, SA7 9FB Tel: 01792 797 770 Fax: 01792 797 771

Winghay Close, Stoke-on-Trent, ST6 4DU Tel: 01782 810 333 Fax: 01782 810 444 Armoury Road, Small Heath, Bi i h , B11 2RJ Birmingham Tel: 0121 753 3377 Fax: 0121 753 3232 Unit 2c, Longford Road, Coventry, CV7 9NE Tel: 02476 363 655 Fax: 02476 645 800 Stourport Road, Kidderminster, DY11 7QL Tel: 01562 862 626 Fax: 01562 862 600

Republic of Ireland The Norflex Centre, 38 Rosemount Business Park, Ballycoolin, Dublin 11, IRELAND Tel: 00353 1 866 5656 Fax: 00353 1 866 5881

The Crescent, Willenhall, WV13 2QR Tel: 0121 526 5353 Fax: 0121 526 4784 Unit 1a, Halesfield 5, Telford, TF7 4QJ Tel: 01952 585 892 Fax: 01952 587 606

driven / summer 2011

39 summer 2011 | issue 03

National Network••• •••National Service


www.peugeot.co.uk/new508saloon

We understand the importance of a desirable business model.

The new Peugeot 508. Quality time. å^Ÿé¬ŸÍåĕõŸ۟‰Â´ßŸ‰«ŸŸå–‰ÛÇéßå•Ÿ‰ååۉ–å´ôŸÍÈىٟÛ‰ßõŸÂ‰ßÍÈ屟Û͉œĖ dÍ屟ȟõĐċēœŸÂ´ôŸÛßR2ŸôŸÂß©ÛÍǾéßåČċĔ¬IJÀÇį‰ÈœéÙåÍđďĖčÇÙ¬Ė9åīߪ¬éÛŸß Â´ÀŸ屟ߟ屉屟Âٟœéßõ´È屟0ŸŸåMŸõßĪ1۟ŸÈ0ŸŸåL‰È驉–åé۟ÛÍ©屟€Ÿ‰Ûī ‰õ‰Ûœĕ‰Èœ屉åljÀŸß屟ȟõĐċē‰ßŸ‰ßûÍÈ屟•ÍååÍÇ´ȟ‰ß´å´ßÍÈ屟ŸûŸĖ FIND OUT MORE AT WWW.PEUGEOT.CO.UK/NEW508SALOON OR CALL THE PEUGEOT FLEET CENTRE ON 024 7688 4644

NEW PEUGEOT

508

Official Fuel Consumption in mpg (1/100km) and CO2 emissions (g/km) for the 508 Range are: Urban 30.7 – 55.4; Extra Urban 55.4 – 72.4; Combined 44.1 – 64.2. CO2 emissions 109 – 150 (g/km). *115g/km at launch (109g/km available to order at launch).


Driven - Issue 3