After 25 years as a mechanic and fleet manager, I had a sudden realization: Not only does my role significantly impact HighGrove Partners’ bottom line, but also that of our commercial clientele here in metro-Atlanta.
I believe this impact begins with our client’s perception of our vehicles and what they see when our trucks roll on to their property. Let’s talk about three reasons why you should give careful consideration to your commercial landscaper’s fleet of vehicles.
First impressions are important
What kind of first impression do your landscaper’s trucks make when they pull onto your property? How do they appear to your customers? Are you uncomfortable — or maybe even embarrassed — by the appearance of your landscaper’s fleet of vehicles on your property? Let’s be real, appearances like this say a lot about a company.
The appearance of your commercial landscaper’s fleet of vehicles (and people!) rolling around your property is a direct reflection upon your property and management company.
What if their trucks looked great (like ours!)? What if they had really cool truck wraps — or, take a deep breath — were actually clean! That’s professionalism! If they look great, then you look great! Who knows, you might be so impressed that you even brag about your landscaper to your customers and peers!
Don’t overlook safety and security
Are your commercial landscaper’s fleet of vehicles a real hazard to have on your property? This is a serious question you really need to think about as a commercial property owner or manager. Is their equipment properly secured? Is debris covered? Do they drive cautiously and with courtesy on your property? Do they use the proper safety equipment at all times?
Are your commercial landscaper’s vehicle operators trained by company standards? Does your contractor even have standards? This is another important question worth asking. A trained company driver will typically drive in a safe and cautious manner by those set standards, thus lowering your liability.
Here’s another important question for you: Do you know who’s driving around on your property? Your commercial landscaper’s fleet of vehicles should all be clearly marked with company branding. If not, you may have a real liability issue on your hands.
Proper maintenance can save you money
How well are your commercial landscaper’s fleet of vehicles maintained? Are they burning oil, or worse, leaking oil on your brick pavers and concrete? Do they look like they haven’t been cleaned in months? Or are they beat up and in desperate need of a paint job? Again, this is all a reflection on you as the property owner or manager.
If your commercial landscape contractor cares about the maintenance of their vehicles, don’t you think that it’s more likely they will care about the maintenance of your property?
A well-maintained fleet will cost less to operate, which in turn will allow for more competitive pricing. Also, these vehicles will be less likely to break down, enabling your landscape contractor to deliver consistent service month after month.
Your commercial landscape contractor is a part of your team. At least we hope you see it that way. They work for you! How they look, how they drive, how they conduct themselves…everything that your patrons see when their trucks are on your property can reflect negatively or positively on you and your company. The impression exhibited by your commercial landscaper’s fleet of vehicles is worth scrutiny on your part. Remember, the first impression is always a lasting impression.
This post was written by HighGrove Partners’ fleet manager, Greg Nelson.