Note: Copy updated May 23, 2023.

Effective fleet management can be a complex task with numerous regulations, as well as accident, maintenance, and servicing costs to consider. However, one aspect that trucking businesses often overlook is fleet driver management. This critical component can significantly impact a company’s success. In this article, we’ll outline four essential tips to optimize your fleet driver management.

4 fleet driver management tips

Successful fleet management, which includes driver management, improves productivity, compliance, and safety. If you’re struggling to manage your drivers effectively, there are several steps you can take to make improvements. 

1. Install electronic logging devices (ELDs) in your trucks

With the FMCSA’s ELD mandate, commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) are required to have ELDs. By connecting your ELDs to trucking apps that offer a wide range of features, you can take advantage of technology that benefits your trucking business.

ELDs can help improve driver management by:

  • Providing real-time information about driver location. This data can help fleet managers or dispatch inform drivers of nearby traffic and road closures. 
  • Simplifying IFTA reporting and reducing the need for manual review of trip sheets. 
  • Sending and receiving instant messages between drivers and the office.
  • Helping drivers record maintenance results.

For drivers, ELDs can also help ensure they take sufficient breaks to avoid hours of service violations. Further, ELDs provide valuable data on driving habits that can help drivers improve their performance.

2. Prioritize driver happiness and retention

Driver turnover can be a significant challenge for trucking businesses, as the cost of recruiting and training new drivers can be substantial. To retain drivers, it’s crucial to prioritize their happiness and job satisfaction.

While increasing pay can be an effective strategy, it’s not the only factor that impacts driver satisfaction. Research shows that work-family conflict and dissatisfaction with home time are major factors that lead to driver turnover. Conducting surveys and listening to driver feedback can help identify key areas of concern and opportunities for improvement.

3. Prioritize driver training and safety

Driver training and safety should be a top priority for any trucking business. Providing regular training and support for drivers can help them improve their driving skills, reduce the risk of accidents, and improve overall performance.

ELDs can play a significant role in improving driver safety by providing data on driving habits, such as sudden braking and lane changes. This data can help drivers identify areas where they can improve, and help managers provide targeted coaching and support.

4. Foster meaningful relationships with drivers

Positive relationships between fleet managers and drivers can have numerous benefits, including improving driver engagement. Installing ELDs in your trucks provides managers with real-time information about driver activity, which can help managers identify potential issues and opportunities for support.

ELDs help facilitate communication and make it easier for managers to support drivers on the road. Integrating fleet GPS tracking and telematics, managers can also demonstrate their support by setting geofence notifications that alert them to drivers on stretches of road with greater asset theft risks. Or, leveraging the real-time visibility into route obstacles (such as traffic or severe weather conditions), the fleet manager could optimize the route to enable the driver to avoid delays or road dangers.

Fleet management success starts with drivers

Fleet driver management is a critical component of successful fleet management, and it’s essential to prioritize strategies that support driver happiness, retention, and safety. By implementing these four tips, you can improve your driver management practices and optimize your fleet’s performance.

What’s next to improve driver management?

Install an ELD that drivers love and gain real-time visibility, automate routines, and simplify complex regulations. Motive’s ELD is just one component of an integrated fleet management solution with GPS tracking, telematics, driver coaching, and much more.

Request a demo to see how Motive can help your fleet today.