9 Management Tips to Ensure You Have Happy Drivers

Out of 3.82 million small and medium-sized businesses throughout the United Kingdom, a whopping 67% report difficulties trying to hire and retain talented employees. 

And if you own a trucking company, it's even harder to manage employees since they're rarely in an office where you can oversee them. Hiring and keeping happy drivers isn't easy, but there are steps you can take. 

Learning a few truck driver management tips can help ensure that your workers are safe, happy, and working when they're supposed to. If that's exciting, keep reading. 

We're sharing with you nine tips on how to boost productivity and morale to ensure you have happy drivers and a thriving company. 

1. Good Communication Translates to Happy Drivers

Communication in truck management is the glue that holds everything together. Creating a system where drivers know exactly what to expect, and what's expected of them means there are far fewer problems. 

When people feel informed, they feel valued. They are also able to keep themselves safe. 

Even negative communication is easier to handle when your drivers are notified rather than kept in the dark with only their imaginations to fill in the gaps. Remain positive but never sugarcoat the negative. 

2. Encourage Your Drivers to Communicate With Management

When it comes to keeping your drivers safe and happy, communication should go both ways. Don't just talk to your drivers, listen to them as well.

Your drivers probably know a lot more than you do about working out in the field. They know what to watch out for, what's working, and most importantly, what's not working. 

Create an open door policy and invite feedback. Create surveys a few times a year to learn what's going on. 

When employees feel heard, they feel valued. Valued employees are much more willing to work harder and play by the rules than those who feel as though their thoughts, feelings, and input aren't noticed by their employers. 

3. Create Checklists

Part of drivers management training should involve your drivers filling out checklists both before and after their shifts. Create checklists for equipment, truck maintenance, and anything else that's important.

A checklist will help management and their employees keep track of everything so no one forgets anything important. This is a great way to ensure everything is properly maintained and your drivers are kept aware and safe.  

4. Provide Opportunities for Advancement

A truck manager's job isn't just to hire a driver to take goods from point A to point B. A good manager wants to hire and train drivers who are invested in the company. 

One way to do that is to provide opportunities to learn and advance within the company. No employee wants to feel they're stuck in a dead end job, especially younger employees. 

Provide seminars and courses where commercial drivers learn about the latest trends and advancements impacting their industry. Share information about job openings and job advancement at all levels that are available at your company. 

Make sure your drivers know and are aware of the opportunities so they can apply if they're qualified. This can easily be done via company communications and e-newsletters. 

5. Offer Decent Benefits

A third of employees in a survey stated that perks and benefits were at the top of their list when considering whether to take a new job. Salaries in the industry are holding steady which makes it easy for drivers to make lateral moves. 

They know they won't lose out on much if they do so. Make it harder for a driver to say no to another job offer by offering graduated incentives. 

In other words, the longer a driver stays, the better the benefits they receive. You can begin by implementing a graduated incentives program. 

Benefits increase at 6-months, 1-years, 3-years, etc. Your drivers realize that staying means opportunities for more vacation, a retirement fund, bonuses, and more. 

6. Publically Recognize and Reward Great Performers

Imagine hearing "thank you" from your boss at the end of each shift. That small gesture of appreciation goes a long way. 

It's nice knowing your hard work and dedication isn't going unnoticed and it's even nicer when it's appreciated. Publically recognizing your top performers gives them the chance to be in the spotlight for a bit. 

As they say, you get a lot with honey than vinegar. Rather than threatening employees who aren't performing properly, start rewarding those who are. 

You'll notice that morale increases and those who aren't performing well have an opportunity to change in order to receive the recognition and token reward. And you don't need to give a huge reward, even small things like gift cards or time off help make a huge impact on employees. 

7. Show Your Truck Drivers You Respect Them

Every position at your company is no more or less beneficial than another. The person who cleans the bathrooms is just as needed as the person in sales. 

But the person lower on the totem pole is often overlooked. People want to feel as though they're valued and respected, especially at work. 

Make sure you realize your drivers are individuals who work hard for your company. Treat them with the respect they deserve and there's a good chance they'll go above and beyond for you and your company. 

8. Avoid Traffic and Keep Speed in Check

Today's technology allows an app to help plan routes accordingly. Rather than having your drivers waste time sitting in traffic, they now have access to alternative routes. 

But it doesn't stop there. Truck management is easier when you know where the cops are hiding and where there's a new pothole that can potentially damage your cargo or the vehicle. 

This app helps manage driver behaviour which helps your company reduce insurance costs, lowers the probability of accidents, and helps you ensure your customers that their deliveries make on time, as promised. 

9. Eliminate Driver Mobile Phone Distractions

In 2014 8% of drivers admitted to using their mobile phone while driving. In 2016 that figure rose to 31%. 

Drivers are taking photos, checking social media, and texting. In short, they're distracted while driving. While some laws have helped to crack down on this growing trend, it's not enough. 

Thankfully, there is new software in the form of an app that automatically blocks all potential distractions from your drivers. That includes calls, SMS messages, and even emails. 

Get a Free Pilot

It's easier to have happy drivers when you have the right help. Implementing a few new strategies on how you manage and communicate with your drivers can make a huge difference in their productivity levels and with the safety of your drivers, goods, and equipment. 

We can help. Our technology helps protect drivers and their employers by preventing distractions. Click here to get a free pilot