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Company cars are falling out of favour

Research suggests 90 per cent of professionals don’t see the point of company cars as home-working increases

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Just 10 per cent of company employees value the benefit of a company supplied ‘perk’ car, according to a survey of 850 human resources professionals by recruiter Wade Macdonald.

The revelation suggests that companies offering company cars to sweeten job offers may want to reconsider their range of benefits, as new attitudes are being heavily influenced by working from home, sustainability issues and general economic uncertainty.

Once an undisputed benchmark for success on the corporate ladder, the survey reveals that perspectives now differ slightly depending on which rung an employee has reached. Just five per cent of non-managers see company cars as a benefit, compared to 10 per cent of managers and 15 per cent of senior managers.

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But while more than a third of senior managers and 44 per cent of director level employees have access to company car offers, far fewer are actually taking them up. Wade Macdonald’s results suggest only five per cent of managers use the car benefit they are entitled to. That figure rises to nine per cent of entitled senior managers taking up their company car offers.

“Remote working has certainly had an impact on organisational management since the COVID-19 pandemic,” says Chris Goulding, Managing Director of Wade Macdonald.

“Our previous research showed that only 10 per cent of people now work in the office full-time. With less of a requirement to travel to and from work every day, it makes sense that people no longer see having a company car as a benefit that will improve their working life.

“The rise of remote working can also be attributed to the costs of commuting. Rising fuel prices have impacted many commuters, and so having another tank to fill may be seen as more of a drawback than a benefit,” he says.

It’s not good news for the car industry, which is currently relying on fleet purchasers for the majority of its sales volumes, particularly when it comes to EVs.

“With less certainty around the economy in general, cutting costs on benefits that employees do not utilise will allow companies to allocate more resources into areas they will see value in,” says Goulding.

Now read our list of the best company cars...

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Current affairs and features editor

Chris covers all aspects of motoring life for Auto Express. Over a long career he has contributed news and car reviews to brands such as Autocar, WhatCar?, PistonHeads, Goodwood and The Motor Trader.

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