Fleet managers aren’t just responsible for the cargo and customers their companies serve daily. The benefits of smooth and safe truck transport services begin with the managers finding and implanting ways to empower their drivers. It’s no longer enough to just dictate the rules drivers need to follow and expect them to correct the faults found in their performance. Drivers won’t perform consistently and safely if they are not empowered to make the right choices. It’s time to remove this old-school method and encourage them to engage in safe driving practices.
To empower drivers, you need to engage with them. According to global analytics and advice firm Gallup, employee engagement “helps you measure and manage employees’ perspectives on the crucial elements of your workplace culture.” From here you can see if drivers are engaged in their work or simply getting through the grind. It gives you a jumping point for encouraging them to engage effectively and find meaning in their work. The employee-focused results go straight to the company’s main goals. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that highly engaged employees work more productively, experience fewer accidents, and have increased retention or loyalty to the workplace. Gallup also reports that engaged workplaces are safer for employees, with their research reporting 70% fewer safety incidents.
Here are the other benefits when fleets empower their drivers.
- Increase driver retention
If you’re wondering, how do you increase your driving retention, empowering your drivers is the answer. Because you give them the tools and means to make the right choices rather than rule by fear, your employee satisfaction increases and they are more likely to stay with your company.
While it’s important to maintain employee satisfaction, engagement assures long-term benefits for your fleet. While there was a reduction in turnover in the fourth quarter of 2020 among fleets, the American Trucking Association’s Chief Economist states this was due to the truckers’ workloads standing in the way of finding and transitioning to new work. If you don’t start empowering your drivers now, many of them will find the time and means to leave once they are dissatisfied and no longer engaged in their work.
- Improve driver performance
With so many drivers on the road and all over the country, fleet managers need to schedule one-on-one coaching and give feedback on their performance. But what if you gave them the tools to evaluate their real-time performance and empower them to improve over time? Drivers get better with empowerment tools such as real-time alerts commending good behavior or reminding them what not to do. They can also engage in self-coaching using Netradyne’s mobile app that shows their performance on video, analyzed metrics, and their rankings within the fleet. Access to this information helps them see what they did well and assess what they can do better.
- Reduce accidents
When drivers are given the tools and resources to improve their performance, they are consistently engaged and are less likely to get in any accidents. Defensive driving enables your staff to engage in safer behaviors on the road. According to Drive Safe Online, 81% of trucking accidents are due to the passenger vehicle driver. If your fleet drivers are made more aware of their surroundings and their usual reactions using fleet safety technology, they can drive more defensively and protect themselves against accidents usually caused by passenger vehicle drivers.
- Increase safety driven culture
With drivers made aware of their passive behaviors, what they need to improve, real-time alerts that serve as reminders, and access to data for self-coaching, safety becomes an integral and seamless part of your fleet’s culture. Defensive driving and other safety habits become an instinctive part of their performance.
- Improve team morale
Team morale improves when all your fleet drivers are engaged and motivated to be better employees. Their morale covers how they perceive and their overall satisfaction with the workplace. Having the resources to improve, along with the means to do so themselves increases morale and thus improves productivity. Your team works better, a community is created among staff, and everyone works together where it matters.
- Create trust
Because your drivers are engaged and empowered, they’ll easily trust fleet managers. Both parties will enjoy a good working relationship that comes from solid foundations. All the benefits you experience from empowering drivers results in this trust. Drivers are more likely to stay and perform better based on this trust.
All fleet company goals begin when you empower drivers. Without engaged and empowered drivers, you lose any chance of retaining them, building trust, and having fewer accidents in your record. Not sure how to get started with this endeavor? Netradyne is the only safety solution built on empowering drivers through positive driving recognition technology. Let us show you how.
Read The New Guide to Driver Coaching to learn more.