Improve the Driver Experience with Modern Technology Solutions
By Carolina Ruiz • Published June 17, 2022 • 4 minute read
The U.S. economy depends on truck drivers to successfully deliver products and packages to homes and businesses. In fact, more than 72% of freight tonnage in America moves by truck, and that share will continue to increase with expectations for faster, more predictable deliveries.
Over the past few years, working conditions in the transportation industry have become more stressful with robust freight demand and tighter shipping schedules. Supply chain disruptions have exacerbated the situation with fallouts coming from the pandemic, geopolitical conflicts, outdated infrastructure, and more.
High driver turnover rates have always been the norm, but what often gets missed is the correlation between turnover and the mental and physical stresses of the job. Operating inefficiencies are often to blame for drivers losing productive work time at a shipping or receiving location. Those inefficiencies directly impact driver pay, extend their time away from home, and contribute to daily frustration.
The stresses of the job can be overwhelming at times, and trigger drivers to seek employment elsewhere or leave the industry altogether.
Leaders in the transportation industry have been navigating the difficult challenges in retention and recruitment for years. The good news is that a strong freight environment for the past two years has enabled fleets to vastly improve driver pay, yet other needs remain.
One way to take a load of stress off drivers is with modern technology solutions for trailer and cargo management to provide much-needed certainty that will save time, prevent mistakes, and maximize driver earnings and job satisfaction.
A smarter way to improve the driver experience
Smart applications and solutions for trailers can help motor carriers automate an important process in dispatch-driver communications. When drivers arrive at a location to pick up a trailer, fleets can ensure drivers have the right information to hook up and get on their way as quickly as possible, without mishaps.
More specifically, drivers benefit from working for companies that use technology that provides:
- Real-time visibility of trailer locations and status. With trailer telematics fleets can connect drivers with assets to provide the precise location in the yard and whether the asset is available for use before drivers arrive. Eliminating guesswork for drivers shows them you really do value their time and work.
- Advanced cargo monitoring. Smart cameras installed at the rear of a trailer can scan the full length of the floor and report trailer fullness. The information and supporting images provide fleet managers with certainty of loaded or unloaded status to help prevent any potential issues that would cause drivers to lose time searching for available trailers.
- Real-time communication tools that give drivers access to real-time chat and messaging capabilities with the home office. If there’s a discrepancy with a transaction, fleet managers can take care of the issue immediately to better support drivers by addressing on-site customer issues and other inefficiencies.
Improved trailer and cargo visibility, along with real-time driver communications, can be easily achieved by using the right systems. Eliminating instances where drivers “miss” trailer assignments due to assets not being completely unloaded and available for use will significantly boost morale and contribute to higher earnings. It will also help fleets move more loads and reduce fuel and maintenance costs.
What’s good for the driver is good for business, especially during a time when stress is at an all-time high. Making changes to increase trailer and cargo visibility and arming the workforce with the right tools to do the job is vital.
Contact SkyBitz to learn how advanced trailer telematics and cargo monitoring technology can maximize visibility and automation for fleet managers and drivers alike. Also, for tips on how easy-to-implement technology can improve driver satisfaction and boost asset utilization, download our industry guidebook, “Clearing Capacity Hurdles with Driver and Trailer-Focused Technology.”