Without a doubt, driver safety is one of the most pressing matters for fleet companies. After all, risky driving behaviors are not that uncommon in fleets. Yet, managers often have a very hard time tackling this issue. Be that as it may, what can a fleet manager do to improve driver safety (thus, performance) and keep drivers motivated?
Thankfully, there are several solutions; with driver scorecards being among the most effective ones. So, in this article, we’ll see how to use driver scorecards as a gamification tool to streamline fleet operations.
Keep drivers motivated with fleet gamification
According to research, turning something into a game — hence the term ‘gamification’ — motivates people to perform well; especially when they play against other people, and, there is some sort of a prize for the winner. In other words, people are motivated by competition, and rewards.
That’s where fleet gamification comes into play (pun intended), in the form of a safe driving competition, among fleet drivers. Now, why would you, a fleet manager, with million responsibilities on your shoulders, bother to set up a “gamification” program? If anything, putting your drivers through this process will make them be more focused on their driving; plus, as mentioned, offering a reward to the winner, will keep all your drivers motivated.
As a rule of thumb, a “gamification” program should not be very long in duration; since, as time goes by, people tend to lose interest, and eventually give up trying. Instead, you should make your drivers anticipate the next game/challenge, and, of course, the new reward. Make no mistake, setting this up requires thought, time, and effort; but it will certainly pay off, down the road.
Also, keep in mind that recognition and rewards should be publicly announced. This way, your winning drivers will feel acknowledged; whereas, your low scorers will be even more motivated to become better drivers.
All well and good, but where do you start to create a gamification program for your fleet? Well, scorecards are a great starting point. Besides, they’re proven to be an effective “gamification tool” to keep drivers motivated.
How can you use driver scorecards as a gamification tool?
Driver scorecards constitute a driver performance evaluation tool, usually integrated within a fleet Telematics system. Along the lines, this tool automatically calculates and records driver and vehicle metrics, to indicate certain driver activities and behaviors, such as:
- Harsh acceleration
- Hard braking
- Excessive idling
- Seatbelt usage (or the lack of it, thereof)
- Not following the agreed route
- Unauthorized use of the company’s vehicle
Using scorecard data to create a gamification program is quite easy, actually. First, you need to translate the data into actions, to start setting up the program. These actions have to meet specific goals, while aligned with the listed metrics above. For instance, cutting down on speeding, accelerating, and hard braking; or, reducing idling, and complying with seatbelt usage. To help your drivers follow through, you might want to focus on one metric to improve, at a time.
Then, you’ll have to ‘spice up’ the game with the right incentives, and keep drivers motivated to win the challenge; of course, by improving their scores and surpassing other drivers. Finally, you should define a specific time period for the program and announce the competition, with the reward, to your drivers. Make sure that everybody understands the rules. As to the prize, it doesn’t have to be something extravagant; for example, you can offer extra paid days off, bonuses, gift cards, vouchers, etc.
How can driver scorecards help streamline your management?
While the game is on, the GPS tracking system computes and records a score for each driver separately. After the completion of the competition, you’ll have a total score for every driver, along with driver ranking. In a nutshell, driver scorecard gamification results will help you:
- Recognize, and reward the drivers who comply with your fleet safety policies
- Identify the risky drivers, and coach them accordingly
- Minimize maintenance-and-repairs-related costs
- Improve fuel-economy
- Get better insurance rates
- Improve your services and create a strong brand image
Simple strategies to keep drivers motivated
We already mentioned that, incorporating a gamification program based on driver scorecards, improves fleet safety. Yet, for even better results, you can combine gamification with customized safe driving training. This will help your drivers improve their scores, hence, boost their morale.
Other than that, when designing your scorecard gamification program, you can also apply a few simple strategies; just to help yourself with the evaluation process and keep drivers motivated. For instance, you can:
- Oversee the fleet’s risk average, and rate each driver based on it
- Set specific KPIs that will calculate if each driver meets the company goals, or not
- Create rankings to compare drivers with each other
And, you can relate costs with certain driving behaviors, e.g.:
- Fuel consumption from fast acceleration, excessive speeding, idling
- Brakes/tires wear and tear from hard braking, etc.
- Specific damages from misuse, or lack of care, e.g., letting the transmission run out of fluid, etc.
No fleet business can get very far without ensuring driver compliance with road safety practices first. Needless to say, if fleet drivers are behaving poorly on the road, they not only endanger lives and property; but also the company’s reputation and profitability — if not viability.
The good news is that making the most of driver scorecard challenges can optimize fleet safety. And, it can keep drivers motivated towards improving their performance and productivity. With so much actionable data available, a little effort on the fleet manager’s part can work wonders for the company!