Evaluation of UNHCR's Global Fleet Management: Evaluation Report - December 2018 (ES/2018/13)
Mariane Arsenault, Team Leader
Esther Rouleau, Deputy Team Leader
José Miguel Fernández Gomez, Fleet Management Expert
Csoban Somodi, Pierre-Yves Yanni, Economists
UNHCR’s Global Fleet Management (GFM) project was introduced in 2014 to address shortcomings in the organization’s decentralized fleet management practices (from procurement to operation and asset disposal) which were underdeveloped in comparison with other humanitarian organizations such as the World Food Programme (WFP), the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).
GFM’s fleet management function is now centralized at headquarters in Budapest, Hungary. The GFM team has 31 staff who are responsible for functions related to vehicle procurement and rental, insurance, disposal, and data management. Seven GFM staff are located in regional offices in Dakar, Amman and Nairobi and manage the vehicle disposal process in countries where UNHCR operates.
GFM adopted a five-year Fleet Strategy (2014-2018), which has three main goals:
1) To improve the efficiency of the UNHCR light vehicle fleet
2) To improve the road safety of the UNHCR fleet
3) To minimize the environmental impacts of UNHCR vehicle operations
GFM has eight components: 1) A mandatory internal rental programme under which country operations and Headquarters (HQ) can order from a catalogue of standard vehicles; 2) A centralized procurement service that facilitates economies of scale through direct bulk purchases of light vehicles from Toyota and Nissan; 3) Logistics Hubs where vehicles are fitted with accessories and shipped to country operations; 4) A disposal policy and related processes to ensure the periodic renewal of the fleet (i.e., every five years or 150,000 kilometres); 5) A self-insurance scheme that is mandatory for all UNHCR vehicles, including vehicles operated by partners under a rights-of-use agreement; 6) FleetWave, a fleet management software for managing the rental programme and insurance scheme at the HQ level, and to track costs related to fuel, maintenance and repair; 7) A Vehicle Tracking System (VTS), installed on all GFM vehicles, which monitors movements, location and behaviors of a vehicle; 8) standardized GFM training for staff in country operations as part of a larger effort to build UNHCR fleet management capacities.
Purpose, Scope and Methodology
As GFM’s Fleet Strategy is coming to the end of its first implementation cycle in 2018, this evaluation takes stock of progress to date and identifies areas for improvement to provide input for the next strategic cycle. Therefore, the main purpose of this evaluation is learning. The evaluation also serves an accountability purpose, assessing to the extent possible the degree to which a centralized GFM has improved the costeffectiveness of UNHCR’s fleet management compared with the previous decentralized system.
The evaluation covers UNHCR light vehicles, including those used by UNHCR personnel and by partners, and these aspects of the GFM policy and strategy: 1) the Global Fleet Management Project, including the rental scheme and fleet management; 2) insurance, including self-insurance and third-party insurance; and 3) the VTS.
The evaluation used the following methods of data collection and analysis: document and literature reviews, visits to five country operations and two UNHCR HQ offices, review of two comparator organizations (ICRC and IFRC), and key informant interviews.
Data collection entailed field visits to five countries (Algeria, Chad, Colombia, Kenya, Lebanon) and to UNHCR HQ offices in Geneva and Budapest. Overall, 183 stakeholders were consulted, including: GFM staff, UNHCR fleet managers, country programme and administration staff, representatives and deputy representatives, UNHCR drivers and NGO partners.