Why you should keep a pool bike for your office

All you need to know about setting up a pool bike scheme
James Palser's picture

Why you should keep a pool bike for your office

A pool bike scheme at your workplace is a fantastic way to encourage employees to cycle more. In these uncertain times, when public transport isn't encouraged, giving staff access to bikes is a great way to help. Our Cycle Friendly Employer accreditation Project Manager James Palser shares some hints and tips on how to set a pool bike scheme up.

What is a pool bike scheme? 

A pool bike scheme is a bike or bikes that are shared and can be used by your employees to complete any kind of journey, but most often these are used for work journeys. Here are some examples how pool bikes can be used: 

  • Travelling to off-site meetings  
  • Visiting clients  
  • Employees testing a potential cycle commute 

Employers can choose to have just one bike or depending on the numbers of employees you have, and the amount of travel employees are doing, employers may wish to purchase more. Of course, pool bikes don't have to be used for work purposes only but they can help people test a commute or travel locally for non-work purposes, such as a social bike ride with colleagues. 


Cycling to work meetings
Cycling to work meetings

How does a pool bike scheme help the employer? 

There are many benefits to the employer for setting up a pool bike scheme: 

  • Reduced travel costs and often a time saving on travel
  • An increase in employees using active travel, which is beneficial for health and well being  
  • A reduced demand for car parking  
  • A good corporate social responsibility tool.

How does a pool bike scheme help the employee? 

There are many fantastic benefits for employees in having a pool bike scheme at work: 

  • Increased travel choices, this is especially important now while Covid-19 continues to cause a restriction in capacity on public transport 
  • Benefits in being more active, which includes reduced sickness absence, increased productivity 
  • Improved journey times for commuting.

Cycle friendly employer. Photo by Paul Jefferies
cycle friendly employer

 

Things to consider  

When setting up a pool bike there are several things that an employer may want to consider: 

  • Purchasing the bikes -  what type of bike is going to be most suitable?
  • Maintenance of the bikes, both planned and emergency maintenance, ensuring the colleagues are confident and competent to use the bikes 
  • Where the bikes are going to be stored within the office when not in use, any insurance that the bikes may require, and how the bikes are going to be locked  
  • Internal policies about the pool bike use including personal use, helmet policy and any risk assessments or health and safety documents that are required 
  • Any monitoring of the scheme for success, and key case studies that can be shared with colleagues.

How to set one up  

Pool bikes have been delivered in thousands of different businesses, across the country and several comprehensive guides have been created to help businesses set them up, many of which are available online.

Both TFL and Cambridge University have useful guides to setting up a pool bike scheme, but feel free to get in touch with us if you have any specific questions about setting up a pool bike scheme.  

Cycle friendly employer  

Having a pool bike scheme is a key element of the Cycle Friendly Employer accreditation; The international benchmark for businesses wishing to enable and encourage more of their staff to cycle.  

Across our network of cycle friendly businesses we've seen several ways of delivering a pool bike scheme, some businesses have purchased branded Brompton bicycles, which really do stand out, while others have utilised bike sharing schemes such as Next Bike which operate in their cities.  

Links to further resources 

TFL guide

Cambridge University guide

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