Top 4 Productivity Hacks for your Truck Drivers
About 15.5 million trucks are currently operating in the United States. Statistics reflect that these trucks contribute towards $255.5 billion income per year. It would not be too presumptuous to assume that productive truckers contribute to this to a large extent.
Now, here’s a question for you: As a fleet manager, how do you define productivity? (1) On completed trips, (2) miles logged, or (3) total value of cargo shipped?
And if you were tasked with improving the proportion of highly productive truck drivers who score sky high in the metric of your choice - how would you do it? To make drivers productive you would need to do more than just assign productive lanes.
In this guide, we will share 4 ways that will help you turn your fleet of truckers in to highly productive and contributing individuals. By using them, your trucker can improve their productivity, and in turn clock more miles for your company.
1) Ensure proper truck maintenance
To do this, we recommend the following:
Implement a proactive maintenance program with relevant non-monetary incentives, and active recognition system in place.
Consider having a program that notifies your drivers about their upcoming maintenance and repairs through emails and text. Make sure the program also makes it easy for them to find the nearest and the cheapest service locations.
Use ‘mobile maintenance’ services to assist you in reducing downtime and increasing the efficiency of your truckers. This is not as complicated as it sounds. It can be customized for your fleet. You can even use it to schedule maintenance and repairs in a way that it doesn’t affect the working hours of your truckers. This will help your fleet stick to their truck maintenance schedule and also lessen the unanticipated repairs.
Ensuring your truckers are undertaking proper truck maintenance activities will help you anticipate a larger problem. Technology will also help you assist the fleet managers and truckers in performing proper truck maintenance.
2) Consolidate the different trucker apps
Technology is the integral element in trucking today. But the plethora of apps present can actually be counterproductive to truckers - since most of them just do one function- you can either check weather, or share payslips or calculate commission - there is no one single app that truckers can use today to do most things. So we suggest an alternative:
Using telematics services will help your truckers plan their directions in advance. It helps in easy rerouting incase they take the wrong routes.
Use DVIR tools (like ours) that will eliminate the time taken to file paperwork.
Consolidate all weather info, company updates, HR information within one app, so that they receive payslips, CSA scores, commission statements in one portal. In the same portal they should be able to hear from you regularly on company updates. (Psst: Noticeboard does this for over 20,000 staff today)
Avoid repeated calls over phone, emails etc - Though the mobile technology is being pushed greatly towards the trucking industry, adequate care also has to be taken while training drivers on the same to ensure that it is used in the safe way to minimise risk. Noticeboard is one such all-in-one portal that can greatly improve productivity - for truckers as well as your office staff ( Talk to us to know more about this)
3) Engage with your truckers
Some must-have aspects of driver engagement
Have a clear internal communication strategy - that spans across onboarding, grievance redressal and career growth.
Conduct regular ‘Anonymous evaluations’ where the truckers can give their feedbacks. Be sure to give them your feedbacks in a constructive manner at the right time.
Regularize pay and commission - and provide them with adequate communications on the same.
Set up a ‘Rewards program’ to recognise their efforts. Give the bonuses when they do meaningful work. Implement competitions like ‘Trucker of the month’ or ‘Safe Driving Bonuses’.
An active driver engagement program, in whatever way, enhances productivity.
4) Give importance to their mental health
A trucker who is mentally fit, is a safe and a productive trucker. When truckers know that they are being cared for, their inclination to contribute more to the company only increases. Here are some ways to show that you care:
Have a constant tab over their behaviour - on and off roads through various non-intrusive means - so you can bring in early diagnosis and preventive measures.
Motivate drivers to eat, sleep and work as healthfully and safely as possible by rewarding them for reaching pre-arranged lifestyle or medical goals.
Look for signs of active alcoholism, drug addiction through one-on-one conversations.
Conduct wellness programs that will screen your truckers for health issues and identify when they need to take some days off the road, spend time with families, or even when they need to be provided with treatment options. This will reduce the severity of these conditions.
Look at their health from a holistic perspective. For example, a driver who is at risk for or has been diagnosed as hypertensive may also be suffering from sleep apnea or be at risk for diabetes.
While there is no single best way to solve this problem, launching various driver-health oriented initiatives can help fleets cut the cost of healthcare as well as life and disability insurance, reduce turnover and boost productivity.
In a nutshell..
Here’s what you should do..
Imbibe habits of regular maintenance - by setting a process to it
Consolidate the number of apps that your drivers use - by identifying a suitable technology partner
Pay attention to their mental health - by staying in touch with them
Engage with your truckers - by structuring the right internal comms strategy
Noticeboard helps your company do all of the above factors and some more .
Talk to us, if you’re looking for a solution that gives a win-win for your fleet as well as for the staff that manages them. (we’ll talk about the latter aspect in person :)