As should be clear from the contents of this website, my speciality is managing driver behaviour. I don’t pretend to be (and would never want to be) a Jack of All Trades. So I’m not offering to consult on fleet management or fleet risk management.
There are plenty of consultants and organisations who can provide valuable advice on those aspects of running a fleet operation, and many businesses have fleet executives who are already knowledgeable, skilled and qualified in those areas. I have no intention of treading on their toes but, where there are areas of cross-over between their fields and mine, I’m very happy to integrate my knowledge and expertise with theirs.
Managing driver behaviour is really a subset within fleet management and risk management. But it’s by far the least understood aspect of the whole process. Thus it tends to be where the best-laid plans go awry. I can help you to plug that gap.
Aspects of consulting
Listed below are some of the aspects I’m happy to consult on:
- Quantify the costs of dysfunctional driver behaviour by comparing current costs with those of an ideal fleet of drivers
- Establish the criteria that define the company’s minimum acceptable standard of driver behaviour (How close to the ideal is reasonable?)
- Communicate those criteria to all drivers and obtain commitment to meet them
- Analyse performance problems—identify those drivers who are not performing adequately and establish reasons (e.g. lack of knowledge or skill or other individual or organisational impediments or obstacles to appropriate behaviour)
- Investigate and address any organisational obstacles to appropriate driver behaviour (e.g. unrealistic schedules or routing, inappropriate equipment, conflicting demands or mixed messages)
- Analyse the appropriateness and effectiveness of any existing driver behaviour interventions; identify wastage and shortfalls
- Establish metrics by which to measure the progress and success of all driver behaviour interventions
- Decide on an appropriate balance of internal and external delivery of interventions
- Train internal staff to deliver interventions
- Draw up exact specifications of interventions and expected results for external suppliers
- Select external suppliers to deliver interventions
- Correct performance deficiencies by allocating interventions appropriate to individual drivers’ needs and in accordance with cost/benefit analysis
- Monitor the performance of the (internal and external) suppliers of interventions
- Liaise with suppliers to modify interventions as appropriate
- Provide feedback to drivers with regard to individual and company-wide driver behaviour
- Advise management on dealing with unresponsive or poor performers
- Stimulate a culture of safe driving and create incentives to maintain improvements
This is by no means an exhaustive list of the decisions and actions that are pertinent to managing driver behaviour, and a consulting project may be restricted to just part of this list, but it gives an idea of the scope of the topic. Neither is the list meant to imply a sequence of actions; it’s important that some of these tasks or processes are carried out simultaneously.
Whatever the scope and depth of our involvement, the relationship will be one of collaboration.
Through our collaboration you can learn how to do stuff yourself or have us do it for you, or a mixture of both. So, for example, you can have line managers trained to facilitate driver behaviour discussion groups (one of the most cost-effective of possible interventions) or Drivernetics can supply facilitators. We can teach you how to identify training needs, how to specify suitable training and select suppliers, and how to measure the training’s effectiveness. Or we can carry out the identification, specification, selection and measurement on your behalf.
But how do you know that any advice I may give is in your best interests? How impartial is the advice?