I was in the company of a long term client this week who has just employed a new Transport Manager. A topic raised was the the subject of the driver induction and this got me thinking that with so many operators in the industry struggling to find drivers, and some new recruits only staying for a short time before leaving, do operators really have to put everyone through an induction before they can be sent out to do a job they are already qualified for?
Advertising for candidates, conducting interviews, following up on references, and then the induction are all time consuming and a cost that operators have to absorb. Inevitably, in the current economic climate operators will look to cut costs and avoid time being lost on new recruits who may not stay with them.
Many operators already use a two-tier system of induction, investing more time and expense on drivers who are employed PAYE than they do on agency and “drop in” drivers who are only coming in to cover the odd shift. In addition, induction is something of a flexible term and means different things to different operators. At its heart, the purpose of an effective induction is to ensure that new drivers are safe and lawful to drive and operators don’t need to be reminded that their vehicles are precious assets that have the potential to be dangerous in the wrong hands.
Carrying out basic checks – (driving licence, driver qualification card, medical including eyesight check, downloading digital driver card) – and requiring drivers to sign a declaration so that operators have a record of this process does not take long provided the operator has the necessary checklist in place (and many of the same checks are going to be required to cover a new driver who is only going to do a single shift).
The other check that is worthwhile is a short road test and a vehicle walkaround. Seeing first-hand that a new driver can check a vehicle for defects and can drive safely is an extremely useful process and 30 minutes well spent for any operator.
We offer a bespoke written Staff Induction pack that covers all bases including the requirement for FORS. We also provide a driver assessment service with our LGV Fleet Instructor if required. Give us a call if you need any support?