FORS Members’ Conference tackles compliance complexity
20th October 2017
The second FORS (Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme) Members’ Conference ended earlier this week with delegates left in no doubt as to the critical role that compliance plays in delivering improved safety, higher efficiency and greater environmental protection to their operations.
Chaired by renowned transport industry expert, Brian Weatherley, almost 400 delegates attended the one-day event at the National Conference Centre in Solihull.
Under the rubric, ‘Compliance: what does it mean to you?’, industry experts delivered presentations and took part in lively panel discussions with audience interaction. Topical, hard-hitting agenda items such as drug screening, counter-terrorism and bridge-strikes followed the keynote presentation delivered by Kevin Richardson, Chief Executive at the CILT.
The conference was also an opportunity for FORS to reaffirm the scheme’s robust response to any member found to be in breach of the FORS Standard. FORS, which now boasts nearly 5,000 members, produced a ‘compliance and enforcement’ guide earlier this year to assist members in this respect. While legal compliance among operators remains a baseline requirement for FORS Bronze membership, FORS is urging its members – and the wider transport sector – to strive for far greater levels of best practice on the road and throughout their operations.
“I believe this second event has really put the FORS Members’ Conference on the map,” said FORS Director, John Hix, immediately after proceedings were brought a close. “The FORS team is buzzing with excitement following the overwhelmingly positive feedback, and I am of the firm belief that a third FORS Members Conference will come to fruition in 2018.”
The conference saw the announcement of a number of new FORS Professional training opportunities to be introduced over the coming months. Key among them is a new ‘Managing noise in logistics’ workshop – now part of a ten-module FORS Practitioner workshop series. FORS members will also soon have access to new eLearning modules.
Conference delegates were also able to speak to DVSA, TfL and FORS representatives at special ‘surgery’ sessions, while no fewer than 24 FORS Associates were provided with a large exhibition space to present products and services designed to help operators meet the FORS requirements. Headline sponsor and FORS Associate, ProVision, were on hand to meet with members to discuss their compliance and risk concerns. CMO Francis de Bonis said, “We’ve really enjoyed meeting so many FORS members and introducing them to our Fleet Risk Assessment Tool. The conference has also been a great opportunity to hear about the challenges operators are facing, and how we can streamline their processes and help them meet their FORS requirements.”
John Hix added, “We would like to thank all the delegates for their time and very active participation at the event. I hope they left the conference with a better understanding of how the FORS compliance process works,” he said, “and the support we offer, as well as a clearer explanation of how breaches of the FORS Standard are handled.”
Report by Rachel Pearson – Major Accounts Manager at Fuel Card Services