City of Tea Tree Gully Fleet Coordinator, Cindy McDougall, is the newest member of IPWEA’s Fleet Panel.
The interview below with Cindy was originally published in the IPWEA Fleet e-news in April 2015.
Q. How did you first get into fleet management?
I started at Tea Tree Gully City Council in late 2001 as an admin temp then I got asked to be more involved in the fleet side of it. My responsibilities grew and then when my predecessor left, I moved into the position.
Q. What does your role as fleet manager entail?
I run a fleet of approximately 120 light fleet vehicles. I also help out with the purchasing and contractual admin side for the heavy fleet. It’s all been a major learning curve over the past 11 years of doing it.
Q. What is it about fleet that you enjoy?
I like the diversity and the challenges of dealing with different personalities.
Q. What has been your biggest challenge in fleet to date?
My biggest challenge was proving myself, being a female in a male dominated world. Every time I went along to a fleet show or a conference there weren’t many women in the room. I think in my work environment, I’ve also had to prove myself. The boys have been very supportive. That helps having their support, especially the technical support on the mechanical side of things.
Q. How did you get involved with IPWEA?
I’m fairly new to the IPWEA. This is my first year on the Fleet Panel. I have attended two of the IPWEA’s workshops here in Adelaide over the years and I found them very interesting. I was approached by a fellow colleague and asked to represent IPWEA’s fleet members in SA as there was a vacancy.
Q. Is there a strong fleet community in South Australia?
A lot of the fleet people in Adelaide know each other from going to trade shows and things like that over the years. We are trying to organise a formal fleet group here in Adelaide as well. It’s all about knowing that person to ring and have a chat and ask ‘what do you think about this type of mower …’. IPWEA is also good because they have the open ‘Ask Your Mates’ online forum that covers a lot of topics that help fleet managers. I’m looking forward to helping anyone where I can.