Safety is paramount for company managers and owners, but controlling a fleet of courier drivers when they’re out on the road can be tricky. Applied Driving Techniques (ADT) and Sfara have introduced a change in fleet telematics that aims to create a driver safety solution to not only diagnose behavioural problems but solve them too. |
The Challenges with Driver Safety
In recent years many different driver safety products have been available on the market, but most of these have been somewhat limited. They have all been successful in identifying problems, but that’s been all they have been able to do. Monitoring of performance and any additional training has traditionally been the job of the fleet manager. The new technology delivered by Sfara and ADT aims to close the gap between issue and solution and give drivers more independence when it comes to their performance.
The Issue of Respect
It is common knowledge that employee-employer relationships can be strained, especially as more managers are now implementing practices that track and measure every move the courier makes. While the practices are justified according to managers, drivers often feel that it demonstrates a lack of respect and trust. Retaining employees has become more difficult and this is thought to be due to the lack of privacy they are granted as conventional safety technology use increases.
The CMP of Sfara recognises this problem and is keen to integrate privacy and uphold respect for drivers. The new, more intelligent technology empowers the driver and allows issues of misconduct to be dealt with swiftly and with minimal fuss.
The main advantage of this new system is the speed at which a problem is dealt with. It also allows fleet managers to be able to be more ‘hands off’ with couriers, leaving them free to concentrate on other aspects of the business. Of course, if a certain risky behaviour persists and the ADT system has noted that the driver is failing to comply, the manager will be alerted and can step in.
This e-training program has already been seen to have a favourable effect on collision rates and is also helping to bring insurance premiums down. These outcomes are occurring without the interference of managers, who are often not even aware of a problem because the system has already had it remedied.
Triggered Training is the modern innovation used in this system that is set to change driver safety. Risky behaviours, such as using a phone while moving, are detected by the Sfara Companion smartphone app using proprietary technology. The driver is then alerted and the app reports the issue to ADT’s system. This system notes patterns of behaviour and, when necessary, sends specific messages to the driver as well as relevant e-training modules to be completed.
The main aim of this technology is to manage performance and behaviour based on the principles of ‘Just Culture’. The built-in safeguards have been designed to be easy to use and it is hoped that courier drivers will be keener to adopt the system and feel happier that managers are making an effort to respect their privacy.
Data Processing Benefits
Sfara have high-tech patented data processing that is all kept on the respective individual devices themselves. This keeps costs low and means that a constant tracking system is not needed. It sifts through the events of the day and only logs and stores the necessary information, therefore complying with GDPR data minimisation.
Let’s hope this new technology is embraced and every courier is granted their privacy and respect but are still protected on our roads today and for many years to come.
Norman Dulwich is a correspondent for Courier Exchange, the world's largest neutral trading hub for same day courier work in the express freight exchange industry. Numerous transport exchange businesses are networked together on their website, trading jobs and capacity through what is now the fastest growing Freight Exchange in the UK.
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