SMALL businesses can benefit from greater availability of flexible van hire to help keep the cost of running a business down.

Flexible hire is one way for SMEs to contain costs: rent a van when you need it, return it when you don’t – allowing SMEs to flex costs against income without overstressing the business.

Northgate Vehicle Hire has more than 35 years of experience in providing an all-encompassing van rental solution that offers customers both value for money and peace of mind.

The winner of this year’s Business Vans Best Van Rental Award is now the largest van hire business in the UK.

It says its success is dependent entirely on what customers think of it and their desire to choose Northgate over rival suppliers or solutions.

Customers measure a business on its ability to keep vehicles on the road so that they don’t suffer any disruption to their business.

Northgate said it supports customers at every stage of the van rental journey, from initial vehicle hire to roadside assistance, providing vehicles at the right time and in the right place; rain or shine.

Northgate said: “We constantly assess our response times and how quickly our highly trained maintenance teams can upgrade or repair a vehicle.

“If one of our clients’ vehicles were to break down, we take the responsibility for swiftly attending the scene and getting the driver back on the road as soon as possible. If we can’t get a vehicle back on the road within four hours, we provide a replacement.”

All its vehicles come with full service and maintenance packages and Northgate provides flexibility that allows businesses to scale up or down, so that they can match their changing requirements.

Faced with the challenge of managing resources around seasonal demand, Northgate has put processes in place to allow customers to alter how many vans they rent and how often they need to do so.

Northgate said it is committed to helping clients identify fleet efficiencies and cost savings that will positively affect their bottom line.

It has a new digital portal which allows customers to raise and resolve queries online and keeps communication open while also providing them with key information.

It has also introduced new damage processes as part of a strategy to improve customer relationships. This new process includes giving its damage team more responsibility and asking them to engage with a customer, should anything untoward happen with one of their vehicles.

Northgate added: “We always endeavour to provide a similar size, equivalent vehicle to ensure operational continuity. Replacement vehicles are always supplied free-of-charge unless the root cause is driver fault, abuse, or damage.

“We are also changing how we provide service reviews for our customers, with unique review packs supplied to all existing clients during their review meetings with our accounts team.

“These packs offer improved transparency and display all transactional and charging data, so customers can stay on top of their spending with us.”

Northgate’s Flexible Hire offering is a practical alternative to van leasing or ownership.

Customers hire vehicles as and when they need them – without committing to minimum contract terms or expensive deposits.