Honda Canada – First Auto Manufacturer to Join Smart Commute

Honda Canada joined the Smart Commute program because it aligns with their core values and 2020 Vision. A key aspect of this vision is to reduce the environmental impact of business operations. The recent launch of a carpool program at their head office campus in Markham, Ontario is one step towards this goal. Considering that there are more than 700 people at this location, encouraging more sustainable transportation options can alleviate road and parking lot congestion, save time and fuel costs and even foster meaningful interaction among coworkers during the commute.group shot of Honda Canada employees standing in a row, in the parking lot with Honda tent

Honda worked closely with the team at Smart Commute Markham, Richmond Hill to plan the best ways to deliver the program based on corporate and Associate needs and environmental goals.

Employee Voices

Listening and responding to Associate needs is a key value at Honda. When surveyed about the carpooling program, Associates reported that the top five incentives were:

1) Closer parking spot to the building entrance;
2) Savings on gasoline and vehicle maintenance expenses;
3) Faster commute (using High Occupancy Vehicle lanes);
4) Decrease in gas emissions into the environment;
5) Spending quality time with co-workers.

The program was met with a great deal of interest when it launched earlier this year. The Smart Commute ‘Honda Ambassador’ received positive feedback, including requests for assistance in finding someone to carpool with. As evidence of this enthusiasm, Honda started off with 10 designated carpool spaces but this quickly doubled to the current 20 spots that are filled daily with smart commuters. It typically takes longer to build up carpool adoption but in this case, Associate demand led to rapid growth. Honda is looking forward to expanding this program as part of their commitment to improve the daily commute for Associates while promoting sustainable transportation.

Honda is currently working with Smart Commute to organize events at the head office campus in the coming months aimed at educating Associates on various environmental and health topics.

“At Honda, we strive to be a company that Canadians want to exist and that includes working to achieve our vision of reducing our business impact on the environment.  We’re eager to see where we can take this successful program in the future,” said Jerry Chenkin, President and CEO of Honda Canada Inc. “We are encouraged by the level of Associate involvement in the Smart Commute program and their support of our corporate goals to explore more sustainable ways to commute.”

Did You Know?

Smart Commute recently launched a free online tool that helps people establish carpools – check it out here.