It's important to have a process in place to hire only qualified and safe drivers. Once the new driver is hired, a responsible person should be assigned to accomplish initial training and retraining if required.
In order to keep drivers and supervisors well trained and informed, the company should institute a number of policies regarding driver training. These policies include:
Your company should have an orientation program which all new drivers are required to complete. The orientation program consists of comprehensive classroom training that will cover a variety of subjects. Among the topics covered in driver orientation are:
After successfully completing the classroom portion of the orientation, all new drivers should be assigned to a driver trainer. The purpose is to evaluate the new employee's overall driving skills and techniques, and to apply what has been learned in classroom to an actual job situation.
This time should also be used to familiarize the new driver with paperwork procedures relating to vehicle maintenance and inspections and to answer any questions or concerns that were not addressed in the classroom training.
At least monthly, a drivers safety meeting should be conducted by driver supervisors. These meetings between supervisors and drivers are held to share news and information, and to give drivers a forum to discuss issues, questions, or concerns. All drivers are expected to participate in these meetings, and all driver input is welcomed and appreciated.
Driver supervisors should be responsible for conducting a periodic and structured performance review with each of their drivers at a minimum of every six months.
It is important for company drivers to understand that their performance will be evaluated on an on-going basis, and they may request, or their supervisor may recommend, a review at any time. However, all drivers should receive periodic structured reviews of their individual performance.
The on-road evaluation is conducted by the driver supervisor to monitor the performance of current drivers by riding with them or following them. The supervisor should document the results and counsel drivers concerning problems or deficiencies that were observed. The supervisor should also remember to recognize excellent driver performance. This is the best way for the supervisor to ensure that the driver is following the proper vehicle inspection and defensive driving procedures.
Driver performance reviews should be held in private and away from the operation area. The review is considered the driver's time and interruptions should not be allowed.
The driver performance review should:
Once the driver and supervisor conclude their discussion of past performance; they should address any development, training, or corrective action needed; and establish new goals and standards for the future. At the conclusion of the meeting, the supervisor should:
A copy of the written performance review and MVR check should be given to the driver, the supervisor's immediate manager, and the original placed in the driver's personnel file.
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