Plan your bike scheme now to launch when it’s most effective

At the beginning of the year, launching a Bike Scheme might be the last thing companies are considering. Not many want to cycle to work in the cold winter months of January and February. However, in order for you to maximise the potential of your Bike Scheme, you need to plan ahead.

Why your employees should cycle to work

  1. Improve your health – Regular exercise will improve both your physical and mental health
  2. Cut the cost of travel – Whether it’s running a car or paying for public transport, commuting to work can be expensive
  3. Protect your heart – cycling can reduce the risk of heart disease and related illnesses by 50%
  4. Improve your sleep – cycling is often recommended by professionals to those who suffer with insomnia
  5. Avoid illness – cycling can reduce risk of diabetes by 40%

For more reasons why people should cycle to work, take a look here.

When is the best time to launch a bike scheme?
Of course, you’ll probably want to avoid the winter months, but equally you don’t want to launch it too late. Around March or April would be a good time to launch, with some employee communications in the run up to get people interested.

This would be applicable for most companies but not all of course. You could argue that there’s not good or bad time to launch a bike scheme, but we’d always encourage that you avoid launching it in the winter months. Take up would likely be lower and marketing the scheme to your employees might be more difficult.

What to Consider When Planning the Launch of Your Bike Scheme
There are a few things to consider when planning the launch of your bike scheme.

Your Communications
The first thing to think about is how you’re going to promote the scheme to your employees. Consider your core message. We’ve looked at some of the benefits of cycling to work but which ones are you going to communicate to your employees?

The best way to do this will depend on your company. Do you have stand-out CSR objectives that you communicate to everyone on a regular basis? For example, a company that’s focused on reducing emissions could promote this is the key benefit to cycling to work to their employees. To the outside world this sounds even better. “We’re reducing emissions by encouraging employees to cycle-to-work.”

Of course, you don’t have to stick to one message. Again, this could depend on your company. You could choose to focus on the health or financial benefits of cycling to work.

What bike scheme provider will you use?
You’ll also need to decide on your bike to work scheme provider. At this time of the year you might already have this decided, but it’s still worth considering whether they’re right for you.

How long are you going to run your scheme for?
You’ll also need to decide how long you’re going to run your scheme for. Again, there’s no right or wrong way to do this but your take up will most likely be lower in the winter months. If you’ve run a bike scheme before, what time of year did the take up on your bike scheme tail off?

These points paint a fairly basic picture of the things you need to consider when planning your bike to work scheme, however they are all things you need to think about! The main point is that this is a great time of year to plan your bike to work scheme!