Experience has shown that “good” employees have no problem with accountability. In fact, a good employee welcomes it as accountability sets them apart from a less productive co-worker. The employee who resists GPS fleet management is more than likely an employee who could use improvement. Follow these Do’s and Don’ts on how to get drivers to buy-in to Fleet Telematics to make the process easier.
There is no magic formula for introducing a “GPS Fleet Management” system to your employees. However, our experience has identified a number of “Do’s and Don’ts” that make the goal of driver buy-in much easier.
Try to introduce the system in a group meeting or other personal communication. By calling a personal meeting (or a series of small group meetings, depending on the size of your organization), you’ll give employees the opportunity to learn about the system first-hand rather than through the grapevine. It also allows employees to have all of their questions answered from top management.
Install the system before informing your employees. You may be tempted to install the units without employee knowledge simply to track work or establish a benchmark by which to determine the system’s success. The problem of potential employee backlash usually is not worth it. If employees know about and understand the system from the start, efficiency starts rising from day one. Moreover, being open and honest builds trust with even the most critical employees.
Keep the meetings and correspondence upbeat and positive. You may be installing the system because work isn’t up to par, but communicating this to your drivers will automatically put the system in a negative light. Talk about things you feel the company will be able to improve because of the new system, and be sure to include the positive benefits for employees.
Hide information about the system or evade tough questions. It’s important that employees understand the system and what it’s monitoring in order to get the results you are seeking.
Establish a way for employees to provide feedback and have their questions answered after the system is in place. Encourage e-mails or memos or create a comment box through which employees’ concerns and suggestions can be heard.
Expect all employees to immediately embrace the system. It’s human nature to react to workplace changes with some uneasiness and distrust, and you may never win everyone over. But once employees understand what the system is designed to do, and start to see increased efficiency and time savings throughout the fleet, most will accept it and work to improve their performance.
Recognize all positive changes and improvements you see once the system is up and running. Whether it’s a gift certificate or cash bonus or simply a letter from the company president, be sure to recognize and reward desired behavior. This will clearly demonstrate to employees that the system provides benefits to both the company and the individual drivers.
Strictly use Telematics as a management tool to identify bad drivers. Using the system to only identify when drivers do bad things leads to a negative image of the data. Drivers will distrust managers and employee satisfaction will diminish.
It’s been our experience that good workers are the ones you want to keep long term, and they welcome the system as it recognizes their strengths and reinforces their contributions to the company. Following these tips will go a long way in getting employee buy-in.