This process should give the driver the necessary information they need in case of emergencies, communicate a sense of responsibility, which should in turn be reflected in driving standards.
- An introduction to the company, driving risk assessments including vehicular operations
- Company and vehicle best practices and policies
- An introduction to the driver handbook, which is ‘key’ to all of your safe working practices
An introduction to the vehicle should also take place. It should give specific instruction on all controls and instruments by a ‘competent person’, as well as instruction on the use of any ancillary equipment (ramps or lifts), load securing, manual handling assessment, accident procedures, security (personal and vehicle), drivers responsibilities and vehicle checking.
Driver induction is a fundamental part of fleet risk management. Accordingly, all new drivers should be provided with detailed instruction and guidance before being allowed to drive. Make sure your drivers know what they are doing.
You want your drivers to be professional, efficient and safe. After all they decide how much administration you are bogged down with and ultimately how high your insurance premiums will be.
- Over 95% of accidents are caused by human error. Effective driver selection is therefore vital to the overall success of your business
- 33% of all large motor vehicle insurance claims involve drivers who have ben employed for less than 12 months, regardless of age or driving experience
Driver selection is the easiest area to control.
Little or no training is done in the field of occupational driving, this will help you to reduce risk and comply with your legal obligations.
A concentration on helping each individual to develop the visual and mental strategies required to improve risk perception and decision making processes.
This will assist: -
- To identify behaviours/practices leading to loss or injury
- To introduce ‘best practice’ coaching appropriate to all sources of identified risk
- To reinforce the competence of existing behaviours/practices (strengths)
- To improve fuel economy and extend component life
- To determine areas where further support/training may be necessary
A Risk Profile is built, that will highlight the strengths and risk factors identified during the drive, note progress made and pinpoint areas that may require further attention.
We strongly recommend you accompany the driver (as a passenger) for a minimum of 15 minutes. Observe but make no comment. Aim to be entirely objective in your assessment.
Retention of Drivers
The retention of good quality, safe drivers, particularly in the taxi industry, can be a real problem. Drivers may be willing to move employers for very little.
To combat this trend, many owners/proprietors/employers now offer their drivers bonus payments. Most bonuses are paid to drivers who meet set criteria such as improving fuel consumption, keeping their vehicles in pristine condition, courteous driving, no complaints, handing documentation such as vehicle checklists in on time and have no at fault accidents.
The costs associated with making bonus payments can usually be recouped within the business because of:
- Reduced fuel costs
- Reduced wear and tear, improving whole life costs and vehicle / driver utilisation
- The avoidance of lost productivity due to accidents / injuries / bent metal costs
- Reduced accidents and motor / personal injury claims
Many fleet operators paying bonuses tell us that the scheme is self-funding due to the reduction of costs in the above areas.
Exercise – Work it Out
Try and work out how much you as a company paid out for
- your vehicle repairs
- third party vehicle repairs
- other third party costs
- lost productivity
- insurance costs
Don’t forget to look at incidents which either fall below your insurance excess limit or that you didn’t claim for last year, you may be surprised !!
Companies however, should also remember that any ‘bonus’ schemes which incentivises the driver to drive faster or longer than the law states, are illegal. In addition to bonus payments, many companies run their own in-house ‘driver of the year’ schemes.
To summarise driver retention, it should never be forgotten that operating a fleet in a safe and efficient manner, taking into account the health, safety and welfare of drivers and having a fair but ethical company ethos, also improves driver morale and driver retention.
New Driver Induction Checklist Taxi Driver Handbook Driver Evaluation Form
Driver Assessment (Trainer Use) Post Accident Form Winter Driving Tips