FORS asserts position as industry’s ‘first choice’ accreditation scheme

FORS asserts position as industry’s ‘first choice’ accreditation scheme

FORS, the Fleet Operator Recognition Scheme, has responded to the emergence of alternative accreditation schemes. The reaction from FORS follows Transport for London’s (TfL) disclosure that it will recognise alternative schemes as ‘equivalent’ to FORS for transport operators pursuing compliance with TfL’s Work Related Road Risk initiative.

The announcement by TfL, in fact, shines a light on FORS as the transport industry’s first choice accreditation scheme that offers a unique proposition for transport operators.

“Any move to raise safety, efficiency and environmental standards on our roads is a very good thing,” said FORS Concession Director, Ian Henderson, “The more that commercial vehicle operators seek to self-improve, the better, and TfL’s commitment in this regard is to be supported.

“However,” he said, “even just a cursory glance at the relative size, scope and service offering currently available to operators will reveal that FORS is the industry’s principal accreditation scheme; the first choice for operators looking to boost efficiency, and, crucially, to nurture a safety mindset that can definitely bring tangible benefits. Alternative schemes aren’t comparable in this respect,” he added.

With over 15 years’ experience as the UK’s established, recognised accreditation scheme, FORS today serves over 4,700 accredited operators (representing 94,000 vehicles) each benefiting from the FORS best practice mandate to improve safety, increase efficiency and foster an environmentally conscious mindset. Central to this mandate is the FORS Professional training portfolio, arguably the industry’s most comprehensive training resource for drivers and fleet managers. With over 30 distinct training courses on offer, FORS has delivered an impressive 130,000 eLearning modules in 2022 alone. For fleet managers, The FORS Practitioner training programme has been devised to improve knowledge, skills and confidence. To date, over 3,200 individuals have ‘graduated’ from the FORS Practitioner programme.

FORS also draws upon the knowledge and experience of an alliance of influential and independent industry stakeholders who administer the scheme through the FORS Governance and Standards Advisory Group. And, unlike the vast majority of other schemes, FORS has national and international reach that has built a dynamic FORS community reflecting the strength-in-depth of the transport sector.

The result is FORS offering the most attractive proposition for operators looking to become accountable through best practice and to secure new business wins with contractors and other specifiers who demand excellence in transport as a prerequisite.

Henderson went on, “I would ask operators to look at the benefits of each scheme before signing up and they will very quickly see that there exists a substantially greater benefits package with FORS, to the extent that is a unique proposition for operators. Having 15 years of growth behind us, FORS has established rock-solid foundations. In 2023, accredited operators will see processes being simplified, with real improvements implemented elsewhere.

“At the heart of our quest to deliver best practice,” he said,” our comprehensive FORS Professional training portfolio is arguably the most complete training resource currently available for drivers and fleet managers. Training content is being revised and updated, while our FORS Practitioner programme is receiving a complete upgrade. There’s much to look forward to in 2023.”

FORS in numbers:

Established: 2008

FORS accredited operators to date: 4,697

Vehicles accounted for: 93,854

FORS Champions: 81

FORS Affinity Partners: 12

FORS Professional driver training course: 5

FORS Professional manager training course: 16

FORS Professional eLearning training courses: 12

FORS Practitioner ‘graduates’ to date: 3,227

Headline figures for 2022:

Drivers trained with funded courses: 1,637

Managers trained: 4,607

eLearning courses undertaken: over 130,000

FORS Practitioner courses delivered: 265