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How to Retain Truck Drivers for Your Fleet

How do you keep your best drivers from leaving your trucking company for another? The key is in prioritizing their safety and well-being. 

Recruiting truck drivers for your fleet can be as tricky as navigating a maze and retaining truck drivers for your fleet operation even more so. 

Imagine: you find a driver with a perfect record, great references, and an even better attitude. You go through the hiring process, you train them up for your operation, and within a month they’ve become the top driver of your crew.  

Then just another month later, they turn in their notice. Where are they going? Another fleet who needs another driver. 

Keeping your best drivers from getting poached should be one of your top priorities. 

Where are truck drivers going? Whether they’re quitting the industry entirely or bouncing from one business to another, fleet managers are finding themselves low on drivers with a high churn rate. According to the American Trucking Association, large fleets averaged 89% of driver turnover in March 2021. Since then, truck drivers’ average turnover is approximately 80% annually. 

Experts in the industry typically point to low pay, poor work-life balance, and an aging workforce for the high turnover rates. While pay is absolutely an important piece of the puzzle, fleet operators can’t neglect the importance of company culture and a reward system for top drivers. GPS Insight gives their customers the tools to reward and retain their truck drivers with our AI dash cams. 

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The Importance of a Driver Reward System

At GPS Insight, the Driveri dash cam is your reliable witness, so you never miss a single moment on the road. Powered by machine learning, Driveri automatically analyzes and scores every moment on the road and labels the activity into three different categories: 

  1. DriverStar (green)
    Actions such as safe driving, allowing other vehicles to merge, and stop sign streaks would fall into the green zone. 
  2. Mild (yellow)
    Actions such as hard braking, hard turning, and hard accelerating would fall into the yellow zone.
  3. Severe (red)
    Actions such as distracted driving, unsafe behavior, and potential accidents fall into the red zone. 

Several GPS Insight case studies have shown the impact a driver reward system has on truck driver retention and turnover rates. 

In addition to creating an environment that prioritizes safety, your crew can engage in friendly competition to hold themselves accountable and improve personal scores. Rewarding drivers for their high scores on their driver scorecards has been shown to create an overall feeling of job satisfaction.  

A-TEC Ambulance, a private Chicago ambulance company and long-time GPS Insight customer, is looking forward to the results of their driver reward system. The emergency medical and ambulance service is planning to promote safety culture and reward drivers for good behavior and high driver scores from the GPS Insight Driveri dash cams.   

“There’s overall a safer sense of driving with Driveri,” said Jim Kvidera, operations supervisor at A-TEC Ambulance. 

By rewarding great drivers for their Driveri milestones, employee engagement skyrockets, increasing driver satisfaction and therefore, driver retention rate among your fleet.  

Wake Electric, an electric cooperative located northeast of Raleigh, North Carolina, found themselves surrounded by team players among their drivers after implementing a driver reward system, creating incentives for truckers to prioritize driver safety. 

“It’s amazing how this suddenly became a gamification of safety,” said Don Bowman, Vice President of Engineering and Operations. “That, ‘I want to be the number one, I want to be the best driver, I want to be the safest driver.’” 

With the tools provided by GPS Insight, you can also keep your drivers by making sure they stay safe.  

Improving Company Culture

Driver reward systems using dash cams and driver scorecards don’t stop at driver safety. They can actually influence company culture as a whole. Creating a work environment for drivers to thrive will keep your drivers with your company, rather than sending them off to bounce around the industry and contribute to the truck driver turnover and driver shortage. 

You can take your dash cam impact to the next level with feedback on performance and coaching sessions with your employees. Coaching sessions have proven to be impactful for drivers, who can use the time to discuss working conditions, poor driving habits, mental health, operations metrics, and more with the goal of improving their performance on the road.  

“One thing I do like about GPS Insight, and it sets it aside from the other telematic systems that I use, are the custom reports, the fleet report, the executive summary, even the individualized driver reports that it provides,” said Victoria Gittens, DOT & Fleet Safety Specialist for Keystone, an independent insurance agency network. 

“The system does a really good job of breaking down where the drivers could improve on to increase their score, which … forces people’s hands to change their driving behavior, change their habits and change their patterns,” she said. 

Rick Molln, Senior Safety Consultant with Keystone, said one company partnered with GPS Insight saw their seatbelt usage rise to 100% correct seatbelt use after implementing the dash cam system, encouraging a culture of safety throughout the company. 

Overall, productive coaching sessions that are tailored to the driver based on the metrics provided by the GPS Insight Driveri dash cams have been shown to positively impact the work environment for dispatchers, truck drivers, and even new drivers to the fleet – who quickly learn that their well-being is priority. Regardless of long hours and difficult job requirements, trucking companies have seen the perks of the various Driveri behavior alerts – overall leading to high-performing drivers and lowered driver turnover rates.

Navigating the Maze

It’s not a secret that the trucking industry and transportation management are both suffering. While there are various breakdowns of truck driver retention strategies that may or may not work, the bottom line is that there is a lot more significance to improving company culture and prioritizing driver safety than you might think.

Truck driving is a tough job, and truck drivers need to be taken better care of when it comes to their well-being on the road. The GPS Insight Driveri dash cams have proven to be valuable tools in the fleet management industry, providing the key to creating a culture of driver safety and driver reward for high performance.

With the GPS Insight Driveri dash cams, you can keep your best drivers, coach your drivers who have room for improvement, and improve your profits in the long-haul. 

When you put it like that, it seems more like a straight shot than a maze, doesn’t it?

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