Bright Ideas: Communication

This special issue offers a collection of 150 best practices, proven solutions, and creative new concepts in successful fleet management, gathered from fleet manager surveys, news, and industry coverage. This section focuses on keeping open lines of communication.

July 2009, Government Fleet - Feature

by Staff

Click here for full article.

Newsletters Get the Word Out
For the past 13 years, Lee County, Fla., fleet management has published monthly newsletter, distributed via e-mail, Internet, and hard copies available in the agency’s lobby.

Reporting fleet activities and developments, trends, and personnel news, the four-page Fleet Focus also includes short inspirational features, “interesting information,” and trivia that help draw reader interest, according to Marilyn Rawlings, CEM, fleet manager and newsletter producer. Readership now spans the country, says Rawlings.

Charlie Caudill II, CEM, CPFP, and his fleet team at the City of Yuma, Ariz., are also producing an internal newsletter, reporting major events, achievements, and “noteworthy happenings such as birthdays and anniversaries,” says Caudill. The newsletter is sent electronically to all fleet services employees and to senior city management.

Vehicle Committees Create Collaborations
The City of Springfield, Mo., Utilities Department fleet operation created vehicle committees with representatives of fleet, customer departments, and drivers and crews. Members collaborate on vehicle specifications.

According to Fleet Manager Joe Gorski, the committees have significantly improved communications, reduced management red tape, and fostered better working relationships between fleet staff and customers.

Best Practices

  • Maintain an open-door policy with staff and customers.
  • Promote transparency in all aspects of fleet operations.
  • Regularly schedule staff, management, stakeholder, and customer meetings. Share accomplishments, budget, and key initiatives, examine problems, risks, and challenges.
  • Use electronic media, including Internet and Intranet Web sites and postings, and broadcast e-mail messages to disseminate news, achievements, FAQs, policies, and procedures.
  • Create relationships with all stakeholders within the agency’s jurisdiction and with state, regional, and federal agencies in fleet-related areas, including energy, environment, human resources, etc.

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