A driving for work programme can benefit your business in a number of ways, but its main aim should be to improve safety. Developing a programme will help you understand the factors involved in driving for your business and your responsibilities as an employer.
With a strong policy in place, you'll find it easier to continually assess the risks your employees face in driving for work and to make recommendations and changes promptly and effectively.
The Driving for Work Checklist(PDF) should help with starting a programme.
You can set up a driving for work programme for your company by following six simple steps.
Six steps to safe driving for work
Before you begin building your new driving for work programme, it's important to make sure that it will be supported within your company. You should:
- Appoint a manager
Appoint a person to take charge of the programme; this may be you if you're the business owner, or an experienced manager. This person should be clear of their role. They should have enough authority to make sure the policy is put into practice and all employees understand their responsibilities.
- Assign support infrastructure
The manager in charge of your driving for work programme should have help and support from other employees and departments within the company. It is important that they have cooperation from people like the fleet manager, health and safety officer, and purchasing staff.
There are three main factors your driving for work policy needs to assess:
- People: each driver should be identified and assessed in terms of competency, training and health.
- Vehicles: each vehicle's suitability, condition, ergonomic factors, safety equipment and information should be assessed
- Journeys: each route should be identified and its planning, scheduling, timing, distance, and relationship to weather conditions should be assessed.
For complete details about all of these, refer to the Driving for Work Checklist(PDF)
After you've filled in the Driving for Work Checklist and assessed your people, vehicles, and journeys, you should consider what improvements you can make to driving for work as it exists in your business now. Factor these changes into your new driving for work programme. Aim, above all, to improve safety.
Your driving for work programme should be written down so you can share it with relevant managers and other employees. You should keep detailed records of the assessment and recommended changes, along with records of accidents and incidents, which you can document using the Collision Recording Form(PDF). Employees should be encouraged to check and record the conditions of their vehicles using the Daily Work-Related Road Vehicle Checklist form(PDF).
You should communicate any recommended changes to relevant managers and employees before you implement them.
Review and Measure
You should regularly schedule risk assessments and evaluate the effectiveness of the existing programme. Follow the 6-step process with each assessment, factoring in changes (such as new staff, routes, or vehicles or changes to circumstance).