Vicki joined the Carparison family in 2022 as our first-ever Fleet Operations Coordinator. 

Having over seven years of experience in the automotive industry, she is the perfect person to take the lead with all matters fleet in our growing Business Development team. 

With the recent launch of Corparison and our Local Business Hub, Vicki already has our first-ever local business event under her belt as a critical success. We’re excited to see her move from strength to strength as the business grows.

You've been in the industry for a number of years now - how did you get your start and what eventually brought you to Carparison? 

I got my first job in the car industry in 2014. At the time I lived in Bideford and moved to Exeter to take a job with a well-known car franchise. After lockdown, I did explore a different career path, but it’s true what they say – once you get in the motor trade, you don’t want to get out!

I decided I was better off using and honing the skills I’d spent so much time acquiring, first as an admin fleet assistant and then as the Key Fleet Account Manager.

It was during this time I first met Matt [Woodward, Carparison General Manager], who was working in Marsh Barton as well – so I’ve watched as he first launched Carparison and then started recruiting when the business continued to grow.

I think I always knew I’d end up here at some stage and when they started recruiting for someone to look after fleet, I knew it was the opportunity I’d been waiting for to jump aboard.

How have you found it as the only person with your specific role, working in the one of the most male-dominated teams? 

I’ve always been really fortunate to have the support of strong female management, both at my former workplace and Carparison. A lot of what I know and use today, I was taught by my previous manager and we have multiple strong female leaders who inspire me here.

I’m one of two females on the Business Development team at the moment, but I think that’s just because we’re still getting started  - and I don’t feel like the odd one out.

The banter is a bit different working with men, and I do think you grow a thicker skin, but we all have the same objectives across the business. Our focus is providing the best administrative support and service possible, regardless of gender.

There is definitely still an idea that car sales is all men in blue suits, but I think this was a changing reality even back when I first started in 2014. I don’t think it’s necessarily an accurate impression anymore.

When I look at Linkedin and the various contacts I have across the industry, what I’m seeing is professional women absolutely smashing out success.

What are the challenges you've faced in your unique role, especially now you do both the administrative side of things and selling? 

Mine is a bit of a hybrid role, so it’s really important that I manage to split my time efficiently between what I do for the main admin team and what I’m doing as Fleet Coordinator.

I aim to provide the best admin support the Local Business Development and Fleet teams – but I’m in a period of learning development myself, taking on more responsibilities for quoting and selling to customers.

I really enjoy the selling aspect of this role – admin is a very process-driven job, and there is a definite end result.

A successful sale generates a different kind of buzz because you’ve built a rapport with the customer and filled a need for them. It’s a self-generated accomplishment. It’s a lot to do, but I think it’s going to help with building new client relationships and working towards building the key accounts our business needs.

My role is continually evolving to suit the demands of the business and I can’t see this slowing down with the launch of Corparison.

What changes would you like to see to encourage more women to step into sales-based roles? 

This is probably not the answer you were looking for, but I don’t have any changes to suggest! I’d just like to let other women and females have the benefit of my experience.

Having worked in the fleet world for over seven years, I can safely say it’s not all scary corporate men in suits with grubby, battered vans.

The public perception of car and van sales is outdated and you don’t have to be a petrolhead to enter this world at all. You just have to be willing to learn and approach it with an open mind.

My first manager in the industry told me something I’ve never forgotten when I’m asked something complicated about an order. She said, “vans are just boxes on wheels!”

What I took from that is that you’re not expected to be a spec expert – just to provide the transparency and good service our customers deserve.

What do you like most about working in this industry? 

There are times in the industry when the pace can be absolutely insane. I’ve learned to thrive off this, so I love it when things are busy. I love the buzz you get from hitting your targets – it’s a definite feeling of achievement! And I think we all want to go home feeling like we’ve had a successful day.

On a personal level, I love being surrounded by people with so much experience in the industry who love what they do.

There’s a really inspiring energy in the Local Business Development Team because of that. It makes you feel that you’re driving a successful business and a successful career every day.

What are your personal aspirations within the business? Where do you see yourself in a year? In five years? 

The LBD team is growing and evolving week by week, with our fourth member starting on the 1st April. Our aim is to become busy enough with orders that we’ll require additional admin support, which would be as Steve, our Business Centre Manager, says, “a nice problem to have”.

Personally, I’m looking forward to growing the team and coaching another strong administrator. The way we’re going at the moment, I can see that happening in the next year, hopefully. In five years – well, we might need our own building!

Overall, I hope that one day, in the future, I will have become that inspiring strong female in another young girl’s career – just like others have been for me.


Chloe Allen

Chloe Allen

Our Digital Marketing Executive Chloe is in charge of our e-newsletter. There's no one better placed to inform and delight you every month, so keep your eyes peeled for her newsletter hitting an email inbox near you soon.