PHH’s Michele Cunningham: Bringing Value to Clients in New Ways

What is PHH Arval doing to pur­sue growth with mate­r­i­al han­dling equip­ment?

One of the excit­ing growth ini­tia­tives at PHH Arval is our broad­er expan­sion into mate­r­i­al han­dling equip­ment – fork­lifts, order pick­ers, pal­let jacks, etc. – that help move mate­r­i­al with­in orga­ni­za­tions and with­in oper­a­tions.

Ini­tial­ly, we didn’t real­ize there was as much demand as there is. We start­ed to hear from our clients: “you have done so much with my fleet; can you help with some of my oth­er equip­ment types, as well?” We found that mate­r­i­al han­dling equip­ment is often man­aged local­ly, par­tic­u­lar­ly in orga­ni­za­tions that have decen­tral­ized oper­a­tions, so no one real­ly knew how much mate­r­i­al han­dling equip­ment they had. We have client exam­ples where they thought they had 100–200 units and then through our efforts, dis­cov­ered sig­nif­i­cant­ly more.

The prod­uct offer­ing is an oppor­tu­ni­ty that we see to bring the val­ue that we have brought vehi­cle fleet cus­tomers to a new asset type. We are able to help cus­tomers with vis­i­bil­i­ty of inven­to­ry, glean data asso­ci­at­ed with that inven­to­ry so we assist them in mak­ing bet­ter deci­sions about the types of vehi­cles that they need; and the types of equip­ment that they need and how best to take care of them.

One of the oth­er things that our cus­tomers have told us that they real­ly like is our third par­ty per­spec­tive, pro­vid­ing inde­pen­dent over­sight of their main­te­nance ser­vices. We are not tied to any brand or man­u­fac­tur­er so we offer inde­pen­dent insights and best prac­tices to help them reduce their costs and increase the pro­duc­tiv­i­ty of their mate­r­i­al han­dling equip­ment.

We also found that our clients appre­ci­at­ed the fact that we could sup­port them end to end through the entire life­cy­cle of these assets. Not only in leas­ing and order­ing and acqui­si­tion but help­ing them to spec­i­fy the equip­ment to make sure they are using the right type of equip­ment for the right pur­pose. The pro­gram includes every­thing from financ­ing to con­sult­ing, main­te­nance and oth­er ser­vices, all the way through resale and replace­ment asset plan­ning.

How is the fleet land­scape chang­ing with the inte­gra­tion of telem­at­ics data in the PHH Arval’s ser­vices?

One of the oth­er growth oppor­tu­ni­ties that we are very excit­ed about is telem­at­ics and the grow­ing role of telem­at­ics data in fleet automiza­tion, whether that is improv­ing the pro­duc­tiv­i­ty of dri­vers and assets or reduc­ing costs and improv­ing safe­ty out­comes. One of the areas that we see ripe for trans­for­ma­tion by telem­at­ics is acci­dent ser­vices. Being able to com­mu­ni­cate data about the vehi­cle and the loca­tion of that vehi­cle along with dri­ver and dri­ving pat­terns allows us to not only address cur­rent sit­u­a­tions but to pre­scribe pre­ven­ta­tive activ­i­ties, includ­ing learn­ing and oth­er inter­ven­tions, to help reduce future acci­dents. Pulling telem­at­ics data togeth­er with motor vehi­cle records and also pre­vi­ous acci­dent expe­ri­ence and trans­ac­tion­al data helps to add a rich depth to the val­ue that we can bring to our cus­tomers.

One of the oth­er areas that we find valu­able in telem­at­ics is automa­tion. The equip­ment itself can com­mu­ni­cate where it is in a main­te­nance or repair cycle, auto­mat­i­cal­ly cap­tur­ing trans­ac­tion­al data and com­mu­ni­cat­ing that to all the peo­ple that need to know about it – whether that is the fleet man­age­ment com­pa­ny, the dri­ver, the client or even the sup­pli­er who is doing the work on behalf of PHH.


Michele Cun­ning­ham is respon­si­ble for strate­gic devel­op­ment at PHH Arval. This includes devel­op­ing and imple­ment­ing the company’s “go-to-mar­ket” strat­e­gy, with respon­si­bil­i­ty for Mar­ket­ing and Com­mu­ni­ca­tions, Sales Oper­a­tion and Admin­is­tra­tion, and man­age­ment of the PHH Arval Glob­al Alliance. She has over 20 years of busi­ness-to-busi­ness mar­ket­ing and strate­gic plan­ning expe­ri­ence in such com­pa­nies as Ran­dom House, AT&T Cap­i­tal Corp., and Williams Scots­man. She also gained exper­tise in tech­nol­o­gy-based ana­lyt­ics and soft­ware dur­ing her years with Neuris­tics, a data min­ing and ana­lyt­ics com­pa­ny, and THINQ, an enter­prise soft­ware com­pa­ny. She received her BA in psy­chol­o­gy from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Vir­ginia and has earned pro­fes­sion­al cer­tifi­cates from Ari­zona State University’s School of Busi­ness and from Dar­d­en School of Busi­ness at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Vir­ginia.

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