Rod Lloyd, Managing Director of Low Cost Vans, shares his views on the BVRLA's new leasing broker inspection regime
“I was a vocal critic of the original BVRLA inspection programme so when I was given the opportunity to take part in a trial for a new inspection regime earlier this year, I was more than happy to do so. I instructed my compliance team to ‘audit the auditors’ as I was keen to inspect the inspection. I have to say, we were extremely surprised by what we experienced.
“The new inspection programme is streets ahead of where it was before. For me, the previous regime lacked teeth and didn’t feel fit-for-purpose, whereas this new inspection went into real depth and felt like a true audit. It was testing, yes, but was a good process to go through that I believe will help rather than hinder any leasing broker’s business.
“The inspectors did a lot of work upfront, asking for documents and reviewing our website. They even spotted things on our site that we didn’t realise were there, such as an outdated reference to us being an Appointed Representative.
“When the inspectors came to visit they were incredibly professional, extremely helpful and very thorough. They spoke to staff, delved into paperwork, checked our processes and procedures and spent over two-hours interviewing me - which gave me the opportunity to talk about one of my greatest passions; my company. They appeared to leave no stone unturned and it was very reassuring afterwards to have real peace of mind knowing that our processes are up-to-scratch and in line with requirements.
“The BVRLA don’t make the FCA-regulations, but we need to adhere to them and by having this programme in place I believe that the BVRLA are really looking out for our wellbeing, making sure that we are doing everything right. Where any improvement could be made, advice was offered, and guidance given on what steps to take to ensure that we come up to the mark in accordance with FCA-requirements and industry best practice.
“My advice to any leasing broker is to embrace the BVRLA inspection, learn from it and use it to fill any knowledge gaps on understanding what is required from us, as regulated businesses, which undoubtedly links to successful customer outcomes and helps to build a thriving business.”