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Prime Mover Magazine

SPONSORED: How technology can help with driver retention

Demand in transport is expected to increase as the average truck driver is reaching retirement age. Businesses now face pressure to maximise their talent. One of their biggest hurdles is battling perception: driving is still seen as demanding, arduous and unfulfilling – a job, not a career.

Fortunately, as technology reshapes the average fleet, it can improve many aspects of the driver’s experience.

Safer Conditions
Long hours on the road, often in isolated areas, put drivers at risk of fatigue and makes reacting to an incident difficult. Additionally, many bad driving habits go under the radar from management that put them at further risk. GPS fleet software tracks vehicles, even when reception is scarce, and notifies drivers when to take breaks. Tracking and sensors allow drivers to receive alerts whenever they engage in a dangerous behaviour, such as speeding or harsh braking, giving them time to correct their behaviour. These provide an easier way to engage in safer behaviour while out on the road.

Improved Communication
Successful operations depend on immediate, open communication. With two-way messaging tools and vehicle tracking, drivers can receive a new delivery location and supporting routing information with minimum of fuss, while customers are kept abreast of any delays and the back office can create more accurate schedules.

Effective Training
A driver is unlikely to volunteer their shortcomings to you, which makes it difficult to tailor training to their needs. With telematics, if a speeding or braking alert isn’t rectified, management can be notified to address it. Digital scorecard systems let managers, staff and drivers view and compare driving behaviours. Events are replayed and used as tools to educate drivers about on-road safety. Drivers can then review and track their progression, helping to improve the overall safety of the fleet.

Job Fulfilment
Drivers spend a lot of time on the road working alone. Scorecards are not only learning tools but can also highlight when drivers are performing well. It gives insights into a drivers on-road behaviour by focusing on positive trends, rather than once-off issues, to help map progression within the business. Drivers have more incentive to stay with a company as it makes them feel valued and part of a wider team.

Cut Out the Paperwork
Drivers are required to fill out a great deal of paperwork (engine data, kilometres travelled, work and rest times, etc.). In-cabin driver tools provide automated forms that reduce the risk of non-compliance, as well as saving time. Similarly, Electronic work diaries (EWD) track of rest breaks and send the data to the office, which keeps the driver safe and cuts down on admin time.

Potential drivers need to see the value in the work they can do for your fleet. Integrating technology shows drivers that the transport industry has many possibilities for growth and progression.

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