In May and June, SmartDrive launched its inaugural customer conferences, and speaking on behalf of the entire SmartDrive® team, these events were definitely the start of something great. Held in Atlanta and Dallas, the conferences brought together transportation industry leaders from across the country, representing a variety of functions within their organizations, for two days of shared learning and collaboration. We also had the privilege of recognizing exemplary fleets with awards for achievements in safety and innovation. At the heart of the sessions—many of which were led by SmartDrive customers—was the increasingly important role advanced video-based safety and analytics solutions play in minimizing risk, improving fleet safety and enhancing operational efficiency.
I sat in on numerous breakouts and informal conversations, and noticed several key themes were front and center among our customers. Attendees consistently spoke about the value of video-based safety programs to their fleet, drivers, organization and their bottom line. In addition, I repeatedly heard that fleets didn’t lose drivers or experience challenges in recruiting new drivers as a result of implementation. Across the board, customers reiterated that the video safety program enables them to operate a safer fleet and ultimately deliver better service to their customers.
Driver engagement was another topic that received a great deal of attention at the conference. We heard repeatedly that drivers and operational teams benefited from coaching, as the platform helped them target what was actually important versus coaching on everything from a random telematics report. With the availability of actionable safety KPIs, many fleets were moving to implement or adjust their incentive programs. The key takeaway was incentive programs were working in attracting and retaining drivers if they were transparent, based on a fair process and actionable metrics. Competition among drivers was something that fueled participation–and safety improvement.
Also apparent was that fleets that have a commitment to safety don’t rely on technology alone. They’ve realized that technology is one part of becoming a safer fleet. Beyond publishing basic policies, fleets that experience the greatest safety outcomes have a commitment to safety that starts at the top and is evident throughout the entire organization.
Our team looks forward to continue exploring these topics more in depth in SmartDrive Beat, our blog focusing on a range of transportation industry insights and trends – from safety and operations to technology and regulatory compliance. We welcome your opinion and questions in this new forum as well.