As a fleet manager, you are responsible for your drivers’ safety. But those of you in the role know what a challenge keeping your drivers safe can be.
Fleet managers are often hundreds if not thousands of miles away from the nearest moving vehicle. As a result, they often have to rely on different strategies to influence what’s happening in the cab as best as they can. Whether you rely on technology or a more personal touch, combining a variety of strategies is the key to improving fleet safety.
Prevent vehicle deterioration with regular maintenance
Vehicles deteriorate over time and as a fleet manager, it’s your duty to ensure they meet – and ideally exceed – road safety standards.
Servicing and maintaining an entire fleet of vehicles is no enviable task, but is important for avoiding potentially catastrophic issues happening later down the road. There are many tools you can adopt to streamline and improve the maintenance process.
Fleet maintenance programmes are one such option that may relieve the stress caused by servicing hundreds of vehicles. For example, some systems monitor your fleet health and give you a prior warning when maintenance is required so you can stagger services and maintain regular checks.
Use data to track driving behaviour
Rapid developments in tracking software have created new opportunities for you to analyse your business. These analytical tools allow you to gain transparency and clarity in day-to-day operations on the road — a section of your fleet you could otherwise be blind to.
Data monitoring means that you can make informed decisions around drive time, alternate routes, and adjustments to fuel consumption. But telematics doesn’t only improve efficiency, the reports back are often enlightening and can also be used to improve driver behaviour.
Don’t worry about distracting your driver with a fiddly computer. The latest tracking software tends to be non-invasive and easily adaptable on the driver’s side of things. Fuel cards for instance, often go unnoticed and integrate with bespoke management systems to provide data to your office while drivers are out on the open road.
Moreover, you need to make drivers aware of any policy changes you make as a result of data tracking. Laying newfound knowledge down into the law of your fleet clears the air and communicates the seriousness of driver safety.
Safety incentive programmes could cement your teaching
Once all your safety measures have been implemented you may need a few incentives to make the policies stick.
Safety incentive programmes are awards for adhering to safety standards and regulations. Try to create a rewards programme that is beneficial and rewarding. This is a great way to motivate your drivers to commit to change and increase the longevity of the new measures.
When drivers are out on the road for long periods of time concentration can lapse and corners might be cut. An inspiring incentive programme can serve as a reminder to what you and the drivers are striving towards.
Using the advice from experts you can develop a scheme that targets areas where you’re finding compliance to be a bit of a battle. These organisations sometimes recommend monetary awards or redeemable safety points. Or you could personalise the scheme and provide gift cards chosen by the drivers.
When it comes to rewards the options are endless and you can get really creative. Think about your drivers and consider what they need the most.
As a fleet manager, you should place driver safety above all business-related factors. Consider these suggestions and implement them into your own safety plans.