The importance of business agility

Being able to increase fleet size, specification and location can positively impact business agility.

04/10/20185 minutes read

Every business in every sector is affected by fluctuations in demand, and being able to anticipate and deal with this can often be the key to success.

Of course, the size of a business has a direct impact on its ability to adapt to seasonal change, with larger organisations being able to absorb it into an annual budget and smaller firms often relying on spikes in demand to support the bottom line.

Regardless of the sector or company, there is no doubt that swells in business and customer demand often necessitate changes to company assets, and vehicles are high up this list.

New business quandary

For most companies, outside of long-term fixed contracts it can be difficult to anticipate how many vehicles will be required as new business can come in at any time. The problem this creates is that the majority of firms do not always have the perfect sized fleet for dealing with a new business influx and can often find themselves with a dearth or surplus of commercial vehicles.

A major issue in the building and construction industry is the nature of the work taken on, with mid-size firms of between five and 20 employees permanently on the look-out for new contracts in order to keep things ticking over, but often unsure about exactly where it will come from and what will be required from a vehicle standpoint to fulfil their obligations.

In this sector, the most popular vehicles tend to be tippers and dropsides, although for some companies utility vehicles can help to satisfy specific industry requirements for specialist equipment.

Tax and legislation are perennial considerations, and often provide certain constraints, meaning companies generally have specific requests when it comes to their vehicle requirements.

At Northgate, we see ourselves as being small enough to care yet big enough to cater – by taking a personal approach with all clients, we are capable of supplying firms with the vehicles they need, from a location suitable to them, at a time that is convenient.

Our branches and the vehicles within them are strategically located so we are able to provide better customer service. Local branches, local account managers and local branch contacts add a personal touch that caters for all customers, whether the organisation has one employee or 1,000.

The need for flexibility

The vast majority of businesses have one eye on expansion at all times, but for many this can be stifled by being tied into contracts that require a certain amount of service to be supplied and paid for over a set period of time.

At Northgate we recognise this, which is why our customers are given a flexible arrangement, which enables them to expand the provision and type of vehicles as required and receive them from one of over 70 branches across the UK.

Changing requirements

With any business, the requirement for equipment does not only change in volume, but also in type. The building and construction sector is no different, specifically when it comes to vehicles.

The most popular construction vehicles vary depending on the time of year, but generally tend to be single, double or crew cab tippers, or crew cab vans in general, as these can be utilised by a variety of sectors while also providing convenience through the ability to unload easily.

After the traditional quiet festive period for the sector, interest tends to increase in the new year due to a multitude of factors, which all feeds into demand and the need for business agility.

Other factors such as low fuel prices and the general improvement of the economy are also feeding into demand for new vehicles, and Northgate supports this through its widespread network of branches, which helps to meet customers’ specific vehicle requirements in a manner convenient to them.

One of the key benefits of using Northgate’s services is that the vehicles are your assets to control and use, but not yours to worry about, as they are still owned, serviced, maintained and repaired by us.

In business, the notion that you need to own everything is a thing of the past; even companies such as Google now utilises flexible equipment hire, with the difference being that it mainly applies to office technology and furniture, rather than logistical assets.

Adopting the same approach with your fleet simply makes business sense, enabling you to stay agile at all times in a changing marketplace.

Contact us to find out about flexible and long-term van rental and leasing today.

Post by Richard Ansah, New Business Manager at Northgate Vehicle Hire

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