If you read the first installment of this series, you already know that crashes cost employers in the US more than $60 billion annually in medical care, legal expenses, property damage, and lost productivity. And the latest numbers show these costs are steadily rising. Crashes are also driving the cost of workers’ compensation, Social Security, and private health and disability insurance. NHTSA estimates that the average crash costs an employer $16,500, however, when a crash results in injury the cost to their employer is $74,000, and can exceed $500,000 when a fatality is involved. Off-the-job crashes are costly to employers as well. Clearly, whether on the job or on personal time, crashes can have significant physical, financial and psychological impacts on the employee, co-workers, family members, and community, not just the employer. Therefore, it’s imperative that your company put in place a driver performance and safety program that:
- protects lives and reduces the risk of life-altering injuries within your workforce.
- Protects your organization’s human and financial capital.
- Protects the company against negligence while on company business or in company assets.
- In turn, maximizes the efficiency of every mile driven.
Not to worry, we are here to help you get started. The first 5 elements we featured discussed how to get started in creating and rolling out your program. Here are the last five elements of a world-class driver performance and employee safety program.
6. Driver scoring and coaching
Check the driving records of all employees who drive for work purposes. Combine what you know about past performance and driving history with what you are observing from various reporting mechanisms. You must take measure on drivers who have both poor driving records and are demonstrating irresponsibility behind the wheel. Drivers that are demonstrating both correct skill and good history need to be acknowledged. Drivers who have poor performance but good histories need intervention. Drivers with poor histories but are demonstrating correct performance need to be incentivized. Here’s a quick reminder: Clearly define the policies and procedures about both observed driver performance and safety scoring data as well as MVR/violation scoring data that results in an employee losing the privilege of driving for work, and provide counter-measures and training where indicated.
7. Develop and implement a reward and incentive program
Now that you’ve set expectations and given your employees the training they need to succeed, it’s time to reward their success and positive performance. The best drivers contribute positively to the bottom line and should to be recognized. Positive results are realized when driving performance is incorporated into the overall evaluation of an employee’s job performance. The best reward and incentive programs involve a combination of recognition, monetary rewards, and special privileges to motivate the achievement of the communicated corporate goal.
8. Develop and implement a disciplinary action system
Just as you are rewarding positive performance, you want to monitor for and discourage negative actions and poor or negligent performance. So you’ll need to develop a course of action for when your corporate safety policies are violated. These can include moving violations as well as falling short of performance and safety measurement policies. The plan should provide for progressive discipline if a driver begins to develop a pattern of negligent performance, safety policy exceptions and/or repeated reported violations. The disciplinary action system should describe what specific action(s) will be taken if a driver does not perform to the acknowledged standard for driving performance and safety up to and including the loss of his/her corporate vehicle use and/or termination.
9. Consider implementing in-vehicle enforcement technology
There are many in-vehicle technologies that give you better insight into how your employees drive: dash cams, telematics solutions, etc. These devices can range in cost from a few dollars to a few hundred dollars every month. With certain drivers, however, no matter how much training you give them or commitments they sign, some still cannot resist the temptation to use their mobile devices behind the wheel. And those expensive technologies above don’t prevent any negative behavior. Drivers are still allowed to use their phone. At that point, cameras and other devices only serve to create a chain of evidence that increases your exposure to negative consequences. Technology platforms like the one at TRUCE deliver distracted driving prevention, along with telematics style data on driver performance (braking, acceleration, speed, etc.), without sacrificing your ability to do business effectively.
10. Regulatory Compliance
Require, and audit, adherence to highway safety regulations. It is important to clearly establish which, if any, local, state, and/or federal regulations govern your vehicles and/or drivers. These regulations may involve, but may not necessarily be limited to the:
- Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)
- U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT)
- National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA)
- Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
- Employment Standards Administration (ESA)
- Your state and local mobile device laws and policies
Alright, that’s it! You’re well on your way to a world-class employee driver safety and performance policy. Don’t forget to share with colleagues you think might be interested! Have more questions or want to see how TRUCE can be an integral part of your employee safety policy? Click here to learn more or email [email protected].