According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the construction industry is projected to have the fastest growth in both real output and employment in the entire economy from 2012 to 2022.
While growth is good, the Construction Labor Market Analyzer (CLMA) also predicts that the industry will need to increase personnel by 1.5 million by 2019. This is a problem because the construction industry relies not just on craft professionals, but also on the manpower of fleets, and turnover rates for fleet drivers are higher than any other industry in the United States. While multiple factors lead to employee turnover, one that is more of an issue than ever is negative company culture.
A Changing Workforce
Today’s workforce is different. If companies don’t possess strong values, offer opportunities for growth and treat staff well, employees are likely to quickly move on. However, fleets operate differently and can’t always be compared to companies in other industries that are making subtle changes in the workplace like free lunch Fridays or in-office gyms. Fleet drivers almost always work remotely with safety and liability as prime concerns. A Verizon study found that four out of 10 fleets use a GPS fleet tracking service, with 39 percent being construction fleets. Unfortunately, many solutions don’t benefit everyone at the company.
Fleets can have the best of both worlds with social telematics. Social telematics combines driver visibility, gamification, employer-funded rewards, social sharing and company-funded awards. By simply implementing the social telematics technology and applying the following steps, companies can increase their overall ROI while also enhancing organizational culture.
Step 1: Shift the Dynamic
One of the hardest pain points for fleet managers and drivers to overcome is that “Big Brother” is watching. Drivers want to feel respected, yet fleet managers face the pressure of knowing exactly where they are. The solution? Shifting the dynamic of management from “gotcha” to “great job.” Instead of monitoring drivers from afar, social telematics enables the entire fleet to work together as a team to improve by allowing drivers to see the same data that managers have seen all along (hard braking, speeding, excessive idling, etc.).
Fleet Manager Benefit
With social telematics, employees begin to use real-time data to coach themselves, letting fleet managers finally take a step back from the big brother role. For the first time, you have an opportunity to transition from a gotcha to a great job culture. Fleet managers should seize this opportunity.
By being able to use this data, drivers feel a sense of empowerment and responsibility that did not exist before. It instantly gives them the feeling of respect and trust that they desire from employers.
When company morale is enhanced and employees feel valued, fleets begin to see a decrease in driver turnover, saving companies thousands of dollars per year. Further, fleet managers have more time to focus on other important aspects of operating the fleet.
Step 2: Prioritize Safety
With nearly 5,000 Americans killed each year in fleet crashes, it’s no surprise that safety is a top concern for fleet managers. For drivers though, negative company cultures and no incentives made it easy to partake in distracted and reckless driving. Now, social telematics gamifies the process. In fact, social gamification provides drivers with safe driving scores that allow them to make adjustments in real time. In some cases, drivers can even see colleagues’ scores, stimulating an extra sense of responsibility and healthy competition among the fleet.
Fleet Manager Benefit
Now that drivers feel empowered to be safer drivers, fleet managers can use the data and analytics to provide their employees with well-deserved recognition and rewards. For example, “most improved driver,” “safest driver of the month,” or even using driver safety records to determine promotions and bonuses.
With actionable data, drivers can modify their behavior without being reprimanded by their managers. Also, the opportunity to be recognized and rewarded based on safety gives drivers a higher incentive to decrease their reckless and distracted driving habits.
The average crash can cost employers $24,000-$125,000. Not only is the costly, but it also has negative effects on a company’s culture and reputation with clients. By recognizing employees’ hard work, reckless driving, speeding and distracted driving accidents are greatly reduced.
Step 3: Focus on Efficiency
In order to be a financially successful business, a company needs both a healthy fleet of vehicles and proficient drivers. Now, thanks to social telematics, the combination of an enhanced company culture along with real-time data and analytics ensures fleet managers have everything they need to handle daily operational challenges while also protecting drivers, their vehicles and increasing efficiency.
Fleet Manager Benefit
With real-time engine health data accessible straight from a mobile device, fleet managers no longer have to play a guessing game when it comes to vehicle maintenance. Instead, they can make informed decisions on whether a vehicle can continue for the day or if a problem needs to be handled immediately. In return, they can experience a 10 percent to 15 percent increase in fleet productivity.
Improved fleet efficiency means smoother days, less frustration and increased productivity for drivers. In addition, having the ability to complete more jobs enables drivers to continue to prove themselves as a valuable asset to the company, which could open doors for new growth and opportunities.
Vehicle maintenance like minimal repairs to tires, fuel and brakes cost fleets tons of money. When maintenance issues occur, vehicles and drivers are likely out commission for a day or more, directly affecting productivity and customer satisfaction. Social telematics technology takes this all out of the equation.
Fleet managers who prioritize the needs of the business and employees through social telematics will see a decrease in driver turnover and operational costs along with an increase in transparency, safety and overall productivity, which ultimately means an increased and effortless ROI.