The Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme (FORS) is helping lifting services provider GGR Group to improve its vehicle standards across its fleet.
Leading provider of lifting products and services, GGR Group, boasts a 23-strong fleet of vans and HGVs across three UK depots. The company had its first FORS Bronze audit in 2013 and now has two sites, in Haddenham and Oldham, both accredited at FORS Gold, the highest level of the progressive scheme.
GGR’s fleet is at the very heart of the business’s operations, ensuring the timely and safe delivery of cutting-edge specialist lifting equipment to construction projects all over the country. It is therefore essential that the very best procedures, safeguards and standards are in place, as director of operations at GGR Group, Roger Millar, explains. “FORS accreditation has helped GGR Group improve its vehicle standards, enabling us to meet the new Direct Vision Standard for London,” he says.
“It has also assisted us in developing our drivers’ practical, theoretical and interactive training, as well as empowering us to put policies and procedures in place to improve our overall performance. For example, by implementing a revised accident policy, reporting procedure and driver awareness training, we reduced our accident rate by 35% compared to 2018/19,” said Millar.
It’s a similar story at GGR Group’s Oldham depot, which joined its southern counterpart at Gold level in early 2021. Reflecting on how FORS Gold accreditation has impacted his fleet, Kieron Harrison, transport and logistics manager north at GGR, said: “After passing the FORS Silver accreditation, it was our aim to take all the knowledge that we had gained along our journey from Bronze into Silver and apply it to obtaining our Gold accreditation with FORS. Having achieved that feat, we can now not only pass on our experience and understanding to others in the supply chain but also continuously improve on our own road safety, compliance, and environmental standards.
“FORS Gold has helped GGR immeasurably in providing the training, tools and understanding needed to push our company to the forefront in transport and logistics. Whether it be the knowledge we obtain from using the FORS Fleet Tools or the information and experience our drivers have gained from completing all the FORS eLearning modules, the experience is invaluable”.
Operating in accordance with the highest FORS accreditation level has compelled GGR Group to identify a number of areas for development, such as the need to introduce new vehicles into the fleet to help combine more loads and reduce overall emissions across the fleet. Millar claims that the recent introduction of a fleet of vans has also provided additional flexibility to meet changing customer needs, while reducing operational costs.
“Looking into more sustainable solutions like alternative fuels and electric vans will allow us to make great strides in reducing emissions across our fleet”, says Millar, who is also quick to assert that FORS is about more than just emissions and cost savings. Safety and driver training are equally important areas of development for GGR, whose drivers are encouraged to develop their knowledge with the use of FORS’ myriad e-learning packages and webinars.
“Looking ahead, we expect to see FORS being further adopted in all major cities across the UK and I believe that the need to have sustainable operations will become integral to success in the future,” Millar says. “Those who can’t demonstrate compliance with the highest professional standards in the industry risk being left behind or excluded from major contracts. For us, that’s not an option,” he said.