4 simple steps to improve driver behaviourFor your employees / 6 June 2019
The behaviour of drivers behind the wheel – either when driving for your business, to and from the workplace or during their personal time – can have a massive influence on your company culture, as well as its bottom-line.
Good driving equates to good maintenance of vehicles, and protection for the driver and others sharing the road. It also falls squarely under the WHS requirements that affect everyone in your business.
While managing drivers with less-than-ideal safety and behavioural records can be relatively easy, identifying ways in which driving behaviour adds to a fleet’s costs, and implementing changes where they need to be, can be a bit trickier.
We’d like to share some steps to keep in mind when looking to improve driver behaviour.
1. Measure and report on unwanted driving behaviours
You can’t manage what you can’t measure so having access to reliable, accurate and up-to-date data is essential.
Telematics provides fleet and HR managers with unprecedented access to an array of data and information. This includes valuable insight and information into the behind-the-wheel techniques of your drivers, allowing you to identify behaviours that are driving up the cost of putting your vehicles on the road and creating unnecessary problems for the driver.
2. Identify the root causes
Once you’ve used data to develop a picture of where your drivers are performing well and where there’s room for improvement, take the time to analyse why some areas may be under-performing.
Do your drivers have the skills for that job? Are your drivers using the correct vehicles for the job? Is driver fatigue an issue? Are some drivers entering corners harder than others? Are some drivers over-braking? Are others accelerating harder than necessary? These are just some of the questions you should be asking yourself.
Look to identify the root causes of inefficient or dangerous driving behaviours, and then target your training and preventive measures accordingly.
3. Prioritise the most urgent areas for your business
You have the data and now you have an accurate analysis of that data. The next step is deciding how to implement the behavioural changes that your workforce will need to adopt.
You may want to prioritise ‘easy wins’ or start addressing the issues causing the greatest risk. Every company is different, and so is your way forward. Do you want to save fuel? Reduce accidents? Improve policy compliance?
4. Evaluate your course of action
Some of the improvements you need to implement might be no-brainers, while others might be more complex and require a long-term strategy.
It’s important that you tailor your driver improvement program based on the nature of your fleet, your company culture and the seriousness of the issues. Make sure you design a reporting process that identifies the areas that need improvement and qualifies how your improvements are reducing these risks while driving better performance.
Far from being a finger-wagging exercise or a ‘Big Brother’ strategy, the process of implementing better driving behaviour can be a great opportunity for your organisation and for protecting the interests of your people.
It can be a chance to get a better understanding of the real world in which your drivers are operating on a day-to-day basis, beyond what the raw data is showing you. It’s a chance to encourage your drivers to ‘buy in’, contribute to and embrace the type of change you’re trying to implement.
Proactively engaging your workforce with driver education and driver training initiatives is a highly effective way to successfully foster a strong and inclusive safety culture in your business.
Ask LeasePlan about our range of risk management consultancy services available to assist customers.