One of the biggest benefits to using telematics is the sweeping insight it gives you into the behavior patterns of your drivers. Not long after implementing a telematics solution, you begin to understand your driver’s behavior on a much more comprehensive scale – both in terms of what they’re doing right and what they’re doing wrong. You also begin to understand that the data is telling you a story – a story about just how safe your company truly is.
Telematics has radically changed the kind of information available to safety managers. They can now proactively deal with problematic driver behaviors that might lead to accident, crashes and even lawsuits against your company. Whereas safety managers may have had to make educated guesses about specific driver behaviors in the past, they can now look directly at the data. They can see if certain behaviors are being repeated – like hard braking or excessive acceleration – and make determinations about why those events are happening. Are drivers distracted? Are they tired? Knowing what the problematic behavior is allows you to locate the root cause – and remedy it through training.
Telematics and training work hand in hand. Your telematics data gives you the opportunity to uncover trends, or identify behaviors that are beginning to trend, and use predictive analytics to assign training modules to drivers. There are a number of driver training solutions available in the market today. NBIS has developed one of the most comprehensive and industry-specific online driver training programs around. Using proprietary claims data, and designed by some of country’s foremost transportation experts, the NBIS Online Driver Training Module is specifically formulated for drivers operating mobile cranes, heavy haul tractors, and concrete pump trucks. It targets the most common high-risk driving situations and behaviors and gives practical ways to deal with and avoid them.
Foresight for safety
The foresight that telematics data presents to safety managers and fleet professionals gives them an important opportunity to head off accidents before they happen, which ultimately saves money and lives. It also helps lay the groundwork for what your training schedule should look like month to month.
One of the other big advantages of telematics is that you can use what you’re learning to incorporate new policies and procedures into your safety program. As I’m sure you know, written safety policies are an important piece to your entire fleet-safety initiative. They provide clarity and transparency to your drivers – and put everyone on the same page. When incorporating telematics data, your safety program doesn’t just get more robust, it gets smarter – and more effective.
Perhaps one of the most innovative ways telematics data can be used is this: as competition. What I mean is that the data collected by telematics systems can be used to invent driver league tables, with rewards for those drivers who perform best and also for those who demonstrate substantial improvements in their safety standards. Incentives like this can give drivers a great deal of encouragement to make the changes you want them to make.
At this point, fleet telematics is no longer a new concept – it’s here to stay, and to tell you a story. Your job is to figure out what that story is and respond accordingly. Remember, too, that in addition to driver behavior indicators, data and metrics such as vehicle location, idle time, maintenance schedules, and even engine diagnostics can be collected and analyzed for training purposes to improve your fleet’s overall safety and productivity.
To learn more about the NBIS Online Driver Training Module, or for help understanding your telematics data, contact Chris Nelson, or another member of the NBIS Risk Management Team today call 877.860.RMSS or visit www.NBIS.com.