Wherever a transport manager looks nowadays, the word COMPLIANCE stares back at them, notwithstanding that more and more customers will demand some form of proof that their freight or passenger carrying contractor is compliant.
Many people will have heard of FORS ( ) and CLOCS ( ) which, whilst undoubtedly commendable standards within their intent, are schemes which measure compliance against their own set of internal standards.
The Institute’s Fleet Operator Compliance Standard however, does not measure compliance by its own standards. We measure compliance against the standards set by the Traffic Commissioners, the DVSA and the Health & Safety Executive.
With this in mind the Institute’s FOCS Award is designed to recognise the achievement and maintenance of the highest standards of professionalism, reliability and industry best practice, whilst in recognition that in today’s competitive market, it is important for operators to gain professional accreditation to set them apart from their competition as industry leaders.
The Institute offers this scheme in the belief that it is uniquely placed, moreover as an organisation dedicated to provide individuals with a professional route to broadening and improving their knowledge, skills and experience in the practice of efficient transport management.
Our scheme is open to any organisation which operates passenger or freight vehicles regardless of the type of operator licence held. It is equally applicable to operators of fleets of vehicles which are not subject to operator licensing.
It is a transparent audit process as unlike others, the Institute’s FOCS starts with the pre-requisite for participating firms to conduct their own self-assessment (e.g., a ‘self-assessment audit report’ – SAAR),thus avoiding unnecessary audit visits until the participant firm’s management have had the time to both consider those current terms of reference in respect of compliance and review their in-house systems and procedures.
It therefore follows that as a scheme designed to ‘promote best practice where it exists or introduce it, where it doesn’t’; an auditor will only be appointed, following the submission of the participants report to a sub-committee of the Institute, whose sole purpose is to review each ‘self-assessment audit report’ to confirm a comprehensive understanding as to the requirements of an imminent audit.
Upon completion of the Institute audit, each auditor shall prepare and present their report, with their findings and recommendations, which, save any evidence of miss declarations will be to either;
• Grant the award or,
• Recommend the award, pending remedial action.
Please note that to maintain the Institute’s Fleet Operator Compliance Standard status, participating firms will be obliged to repeat the above process, which must completed on or before the expiry of each annual anniversary.
Where the above criteria has been met, and on the approval of the Executive Committee on behalf of the National Council of the Institute, the company will be issued with a FOCS certificate which will be valid for a twelve month period. Successful operators will also be entitled to display the Institute’s “Fleet Operator Compliance Standard” logo on their vehicles, letterheads, websites and all company publicity material.
The Institute shall also publish/list successful FOCS operators’ details on both its website and the Institute’s annual year book ‘Transport Management’ at no cost to the FOCS operator.
Please note that, should assistance be required many of the Institute’s approved auditors may be able to offer assistance in both completing the SAAR and in a pre-audit inspection services.
Such services however must never be considered to form part of the FOCS and must therefore be openly discussed between the participating firms, the auditor and disclosed to the Institute.
Should an organisation engage the services of an (Institute) auditor in preparation for the FOCS, this auditor shall NOT be permitted to conduct the IoTA FOCS Audit.
To enrol your firm onto our Fleet Operator Compliance Standard, please complete the FOCS Application – (see downloads)
– and either, post (see address below) or email your application to: firstname.lastname@example.org