In the approach to the busy summer season when thousands of Britons will rent cars at home and abroad, MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough Andrew Jones was given a glimpse of what it’s like behind the scenes at a rental car company on his visit to Enterprise Rent-A-Car in Knaresborough.
During his visit, the new branch manager at Knaresborough, Will Ascough, showed Andrew Jones how a rental car business works. Starting behind the desk, Will talked through all the rental processes, before taking the Minister out to the car park to demonstrate some of the safety procedures of the “boot to boot” which takes place every time a vehicle is returned.
Will Ascough joined the Knaresborough branch at the start of June from Wakefield, where he was an assistant manager. Will has been with Enterprise for just over two years and Knaresborough is his first branch manager position.
Andrew Jones also met assistant manager Sophie Korendowych. Both Will and Sophie joined Enterprise Rent-A-Car as management trainees on the company’s graduate training programme. This offers fast progression, the opportunity to manage a branch like an independent small business as well as to benefit from bonuses paid from the bottom line.
The Minister learned how Enterprise management trainees are drilled in the company’s unique customer service approach. This rewards employees based on their Enterprise score, the SQi, which is based on thousands of customer calls across the UK every month. Since the Knaresborough branch was opened at the end of 2013, it has become one of the highest performing branches in the UK based on this rigorous customer service measure.
Together, Will, Sophie and two other employees manage a fleet of 70 cars and vans and serve hundreds of business, residential and leisure customers from all over the UK and beyond, who flock to Knaresborough during the summer and rent a car to see the local sites.
Andrew Jones, MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough and Under Secretary of State for Transport, said:
Mobility is a huge topic in my work, both when I talk to local residents and businesses as well as in my Parliamentary role. Rental car companies such as Enterprise are playing a vital part in our vision to create an integrated and sustainable transport network, providing greater access to a much wider range of transport options.
Visiting the Knaresborough branch today and meeting the staff, I see a very successful local business serving local needs but also one part of a very important national network helping people to progress with their daily lives across the UK. It is incredibly useful to get an insight into how companies like Enterprise operate and what helps them succeed.
Brian Waligora, Enterprise Rent-A-Car General Manager for the North of England, said:
We hope the Minister got a good insight into car rental during his visit, and that he enjoyed the experience of seeing the world from the other side of the rental desk. Renting a car is now so popular and familiar to many that it’s easy to forget that it’s quite a complex business to run.
As a business, we are seeing tremendous interest in car rental especially with so many new technologies emerging such as electric vehicles, hydrogen cars and even driverless cars. The opportunity to rent a vehicle that is totally different from what you may already own or be used to driving is creating a new role for companies like ours. However, we need help from government, for example, to drive new charging networks, to support these technologies. As Under Secretary of State for Transport, this is something Andrew Jones is as interested in as we are.