Want to improve your drivers’ happiness? Then you’re in the right place.
Today, we’re going to talk about how to boost driver engagement and satisfaction. Because at the end of the day, happy drivers perform better.
And what does that mean for your company?
Keep your drivers happy, and you’ll be well on your way to:
- reducing fuel and maintenance costs
- improving your risk management, and
- boosting your company’s bottom line.
For an engaged, productive fleet, here are five ways to get started.
5 STRATEGIES TO IMPROVE DRIVER PRODUCTIVITY AND ENGAGEMENT
1. Rally Your Team Around Drivers
Make no mistake about it.
Employees are your company’s greatest asset. Drivers are an indispensable subset of employees, but are they treated that way?
Since they’re usually out of the office, they might feel less connected to their coworkers. Making them feel involved and appreciated makes a big difference.
In fact, respect is paramount.
According to the 2016 Overdrive Truckers survey, many drivers feel that they don't get enough respect for the job that they do. Ensure that everyone at your company—from management to dispatchers—understands the critical role of fleet drivers.
2. Be Transparent to Make Drivers Feel Heard
Drivers should feel connected not only to colleagues, but also to their supervisors. Regular communication is imperative—and this means quality time and a sincere exchange.
So what can you do?
Listen to your drivers. Try to understand their perspective. What aspects of the job are frustrating for them? While money is typically an issue, other concerns—such as more control over routes or schedules—might surface.
Without open communication, drivers might feel aggrieved enough to leave the company. Even if they stay, they might become so disgruntled that they neglect clients or treat them rudely.
That would surely undermine your business goodwill.
So keep drivers involved in any decisions that affect them directly. Whether the issue is salary, schedule, training, or vehicle upfit, welcome their input and truly listen to their concerns.
Tip: Consider appointing or hiring a driver advocate to keep driver concerns top priority.
3. Give Drivers the Upfit They Want
Fleet vehicle upfitting is a major opportunity to boost driver satisfaction. Giving drivers the right upfit is a win-win for them and for you.
With proper vehicle enhancements, drivers will be far more comfortable doing their work. They're more likely to stick with you, which will reduce costly driver turnover. You’ll also attract and retain better-qualified employees who expect more from themselves and their vehicles.
Don’t forget to bear in mind:
It's crucial to talk with drivers about their own upfits. Few things frustrate them more than a pointless upfit. If the upfit doesn't address their needs and increase driver productivity, it’s wasted money for you.
4. Provide Great Audio to Boost Driver Spirit
Your drivers spend hours upon hours behind the wheel. Include high-quality sound systems in their vehicles. Also provide access to terrific music, which can go far in heightening energy and mood.
And have you heard?
Sirius XM is offering drivers of companies that work with Foss National Leasing preferred pricing on audio entertainment subscriptions. This means drivers get more than 130 channels of commercial-free music, sports, entertainment, news, and comedy—at a reduced rate. (Contact us to learn more about this program.)
5. Give Regular Feedback to Promote Employee Engagement
You might think that employees want to minimize interaction with their bosses.
Well, is this true?
The fact is, 65% of employees actually want more feedback than they’re currently getting.
Highly engaged employees receive feedback at least once a week, so consider scheduling a weekly five-minute conversation with each of your drivers. Let them know that you notice their efforts (and include details!).
These types of mini meetings cultivate employee engagement and can be quick and simple:
“Hey, I really appreciate how you keep your car in top shape!”
“Thanks for the great service you give our clients."
"We always get excellent testimonials from your service calls.”
For fleet-based businesses, your drivers hold an important key to success.
Make sure drivers are getting the respect they deserve, and be receptive to any concerns they might have. Give them an upfit that meets their needs so they can work faster and more comfortably.
If you’re a Foss National customer, take advantage of Sirius XM’s preferred fleet pricing and give drivers something great to listen to!
Finally, take a few minutes each week to tell your drivers why you appreciate them.
Do your part to promote driver engagement. Keep them happy and productive—and your company will run smoothly as well.
Download Fleet Management Checklist: 11 Tips for Success. This checklist will give you practical information on how to manage all your fleet's moving parts successfully.
Article by Brad Crowe