The Highland Council has reduced its annual business mileage by more than 825,000 miles and made cost savings in excess of 400,000 pounds ($516,046) in the first 12 months since introducing Enterprise Car Club, part of global vehicle rental group, Enterprise Holdings.
This represents a 15% reduction in overall business travel costs. The council’s "grey fleet" mileage has fallen by nearly a quarter (22%) and its overall business mileage has dropped by 13%.
A fleet of 60 Enterprise Car Club vehicles located across 21 Highland Council offices is now available for booking by the hour or day by employees who would have previously used a private car and claimed mileage reimbursement.
The majority of the 60 vehicles are plug-in hybrids. Five plug-in Nissan LEAF electric cars are also based at Council offices in Inverness, Golspie, and Fort William, where average journey lengths are often shorter and electric vehicles (EVs) offer the most viable and sustainable option. Enterprise has also installed car club technology, including the ability to book online or via a mobile app, in many of the council’s own pool cars.
The Highland Council estimates that it has cut its carbon footprint from staff travel by approximately 377 tons of CO2 equivalent in 12 months by transferring grey fleet mileage onto dedicated hybrid and electric Enterprise Car Club vehicles, a reduction of 19%.
The Council covers a large area of Northern Scotland, roughly equivalent to the size of Belgium. Many of its 10,000 employees travel great distances for business to and from around 700 local offices, schools, and depots to deliver essential local services. Before bringing Enterprise on board, its grey fleet mileage amounted to more than six million miles a year at a cost of more than 2.2 million pounds ($1.7 million).
Enterprise worked with the Council to analye employee mileage in detail to identify why, how, when, and where trips were taking place, if alternative options were suitable, and where it would make sense to have dedicated car club vehicles located on-site.
A significant factor in the success of the club has been an employee communications program that provides clear information on how to make better travel choices. This will shortly include the generation of automated emails to notify when employees could be utilizing vehicles more efficiently.
The Council aims to increase its car club fleet to 80 vehicles by the end of this year to achieve even greater savings.
In addition, the Council is rolling-out an improved ICT infrastructure to encourage video conferencing and is focusing on shared and public transport for service delivery where practical.