The driving force behind the development of the first-ever national fleet association for fleet professionals in Mexico outlined their plans for fleet manager certification program to the Global Fleet Advisory Board (GFAB) on February 09, 2022.
Hailed by editor Mike Antich as “a historic moment”, the expansion of AMAFA (Asociación Mexicana de Administradores de Flotilla Automotriz - the Mexican Association of Automotive Fleet Managers) into a national fleet association and the development of AMAFA's first-ever fleet certification program, would enable fleet managers to have a significant impact on the local fleet market in Mexico.
Presenting to GFAB were:
- Jaime Bringas - AMAFA president and fleet & EHS manager at Philip Morris International;
- Kevin Arthur Kibilds - AMAFA VP and LatAm fleet manager for MSD Merck; and
- Rodrigo Monroy, AMAFA member and strategic sourcing manager Novartis.
Kilbs started proceedings by explaining the thinking behind AMAFA and the next steps it planned to take.
“AMAFA started as a best practice sharing group among fleet professionals in the pharmcuetical sector. It was a concentrated group, but very effective in sharing information for people doing the same thing and facing the same situations in the same industry. However, with responsibility changes within the group, it was opened up to all industries to make it bigger and stronger and Jaine was appointed president. It was during this change phase that we gave it some branding - AMAFA - and decided we could make it more professional and more specialized," said Kibilds.
Currently, AMAFA has 150 fleet managers in the association with more than 50,000 vehicles under management.
Jaime Bringas takes up the story.
“We’re a networking group and will remain that way, but we believed the next step to further professionalize fleet managers was a certification scheme and a website. The website is live while the certification scheme is due to be unveiled at Automotive Fleet's Global Fleet Conference in Miami this June during the co-located LatAm Fleet Congress, which will be held in Spanish with simultaneous English translations.”
Rodrigo Monroy continues: “It’s the only fleet manager association in Mexico and in most of Latin America. It’s important for fleet managers to have access to best practices and networking. So the AMAFA fleet certification program will take us to the next level and enable any fleet manager in LatAm to join the association.”
Currently there are 15 modules being developed for the Essentials of Fleet Management course; the second level takes a deep dive into specializations; while the third section concentrates on professional development skills.
AMAFA has also a working partnerhip with AMAVe (the Mexican Association of Vehicle Leasing Companies), which will provide subject-matter experise for the course module development.
While there will be a cost to the certification program, Bringas said that it would be affordable while delivering great value.
Karla Guajardo, who is based in Monterey, Mexico, and manages Honeywell’s fleet in the Americas said the certification program would be vital fleet managers rather than “coming into the job and learning while on the job - certification would save the pain.” She added that Mexico was very different to the way U.S. and Canada are managed. “There’s a lot of value in knowing that the fleet is managed differently in Mexico.”
Editor Mike Antich wrapped up the meeting by noting that the ideas for the certification program only began in December as a way of adding value to AMAFA membership and going into the second week of February the association had a framework in place with modules taking shape. He finished by adding his thanks to Jaime Bringas, Kevin Arthur Kibild, and Rodrigo Monroy for their presentations.