Incentives in the fleet - The company car!

7. Nov 2022 | By Malena Gärtner

The right incentive spurs employees on. Means to an end: the company car!

The rental car as an incentive for employees

We all know it from our own experience: performance is always at its highest when one's own motivation is at its maximum. This also applies to the employees of one's own company. The incentive describes a strategy in which the employees of a company are offered the prospect of a reward if they achieve certain goals or actively contribute their share to the achievement of the set company goals. In practice, it has been shown time and again that certain incentives increase the willingness to perform, especially for employees in the field. One of the most common incentives for employees in the field is still their own company car. These are usually company cars that employees are also allowed to use privately within certain limits. But the company car offers advantages not only for the employee: someone who drives up in a comfortable Opel Signum will probably leave a more convincing impression than a salesperson who drives up in an Opel Signum.

Psychologists who deal with the subject of employee motivation recommend presenting the company's goals to the employees and linking them to a reward whenever the employee has the potential to directly control the achievement of the goal by exerting his or her own influence. The question that every company has to answer for itself is whether it makes sense to design the "company car project" in such a way that it is directly oriented to the employee goals. An example of such a project design can be seen in the Würth Group in Künzelsau, which specializes in the screw trade in the sales force.


The principle in the Würth Group: A high-quality car in return for good performance

The incentive strategy involves offering employees the prospect of a car that is geared to their performance in terms of equipment and model. Depending on their performance, employees are divided into different groups, to which they are then assigned a specific type of vehicle. To give an example, the third category of the group drives a car from the standardized compact class, for example the Ford Focus or the VW Golf, while the second category of top salespeople can choose between a Ford Mondeo or even a BMW 3-series. The first top category drives a Mercedes C-Class or an Audi A4 Avant. It is always possible to move up between the named categories. Studies show that although this concept is suitable for the Würth Group mentioned as an example, it is by no means transferable 1:1 to every company. Depending on the business model and sales order, there may also be a need for other solutions.

Experts agree on one point: a mix of the vehicle fleet and a maximum of flexibility on the part of the company are indispensable for this conceptual design in order to implement the incentive strategy in a long-term and success-oriented manner. It is necessary to make flexible package solutions or individual arrangements with the leasing company. What is considered a flaw in this type of conceptual design: the employees have only limited or no influence on the equipment and, for example, the color of the company vehicle.

Incentive in the field service as a challenging project

For the incentive strategy to be successful, there is no question that the concept must be individually adapted to the working circumstances of the employees. For the sales force, the so-called incentive has particularly great potential: the company car can be a proven means of retaining good employees in the long term. The implementation of the model is such that the employee is given a budget, within the framework of which he is given the opportunity to choose and equip his company car according to personal preferences.

It is important for the company to always keep track of the conceptualization so that the financial expense associated with the incentive does not exceed the financial benefits that the company gains for itself through the incentive strategies.