Managing the Financial Side of Commercial Fleets

Sears Invests in Fleet Sustainability Initiatives to Save Money and Lower its CO2 Impact

Sears aggressively implemented sustainability measures into its fleet to minimize its impact on the environment and create cost savings. The installation of fuel-efficiency programming tools into more than 4,000 vans led to a 10-percent gas savings.

July 2011, by Cheryl Knight - Also by this author

Tiffany Matthews,
Buyer - Procurement, Logistics & Fleet Management Services
Tiffany Matthews, Buyer - Procurement, Logistics & Fleet Management Services

At a Glance:

A few of the sustainability initiatives Sears Holding Corp., takes part in include:

  • Recycling 12,756 tons of used oil and 886 tons of oil filters.
  • Installing more than 4,000 fuel-efficiency programming tools in company vans.
  • Recycling 54,703 tons of tires in one year.








As the nation's fourth-largest broadline retailer with more than 4,000 full-line and specialty retail stores in the United States and Canada, Sears Holdings Corporation (SHC) reported revenues of $43.3 billion for fiscal year 2010. Headquartered in Hoffman Estates, Ill., the company operates through its subsidiaries, including Sears, Roebuck and Co., and Kmart Corporation.

The leading home appliance retailer, as well as a leader in tools, and lawn and garden; consumer electronics; and automotive repair and maintenance, SHC's key proprietary brands include Kenmore, Craftsman, and DieHard, and a broad apparel offering, including well-known labels such as Lands' End, Jaclyn Smith, and Joe Boxer, as well as the Apostrophe and Covington brands. The company also has the Country Living collection, which is offered by Sears Holdings and Kmart. 

"We are the nation's largest provider of home services, with more than 11 million service calls made annually," said Tiffany Matthews, buyer - procurement, logistics & fleet management services for Sears Holdings. In her role, Matthews manages the company's fleet purchasing and leasing management services; logistics and transportation agreement services; loss prevention items; and contract and supplier management. She works alongside an SHC fleet staff that includes positions ranging from field repair technicians to district service managers.

With more than 280,000 employees, SHC's 11,000-plus owned and leased fleet of vehicles - including Chrysler, Ford, and GM models - are utilized for both service and commercial purposes. Approximately 750 of these fleet vehicles are E-85-fueled GM vans.

Field product repair services (PRS) technicians use the majority of SHC's fleet vehicles. These technicians travel to customers' homes to repair appliances and electronics of all brands, no matter where the products were purchased. The company also assigns vehicles to associates who are responsible for multiple stores in a given area, as well as to store repair technicians.

Matthews regularly partners with fleet management companies, as well as with various SHC business departments - from Treasury and Home Services to Automotive, Loss Prevention, and Human Resources.

Total Cost of Ownership Key to SHC Fleet Mission

SHC's fleet department mission includes getting the best total cost of ownership from a vehicle and ensuring field associates best represent the SHC brand and commit to upholding the company's goal to be the first choice and trusted partner for home services needs.

"The PRS fleet reinforces this commitment every day as technicians are dispatched to customers' homes to install, upgrade, or repair Sears Holdings or Kmart products, in addition to products purchased from our competitors," Matthews said.

The fleet further supports the corporate mission through graphics displayed on service vans, which act as rolling billboards depicting its "Blue Crew" and various products sold by local Sears Holdings full line, appliance, hardware, and outlet stores, as well as selected Kmart locations.

Other fleet vehicles used by associates ensure company facilities get the support needed from an operational and management perspective.

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