When it comes to evaluations of our driver’s skills, there is a wide range of tests that we can have our drivers complete in order to determine their knowledge and ability behind the wheel. However, a common problem we are likely to come across is drivers who, even when they know all the right answers, still miss applying that knowledge on real-life situations. The best way to identify these issues is by having them perform an on-road driving assessment. This will allow them to understand their strengths and their weaknesses, and work on any area of improvement that might be needed.
On-road driving assessments are commonly carried out to determine the abilities of elder citizens and persons with disabilities, as this might be required by their doctors as part of a medical evaluation. However, commercial drivers can also carry out this kind of evaluations and benefit greatly from the results. This is particularly true for truck drivers who transport freight and spend many hours a day behind the wheel, as well as drivers who transport personnel or that work as rideshare drivers.
In order to carry out an on-road driving assessment, we need to have one trainer with one driver completing one of their delivery trips. The main objective is having the trainer identifying all the possible risk situations that our driver might have to face on any given day. This way, their ability to respond could be properly evaluated. Also, it could help the trainer evaluate any existing risk practices or omissions that are part of our driver’s performance, and mitigate these hazards.
Whenever we schedule an on-road driving assessment, we need to keep in mind just how much time the whole process will take, as it needs to be during our company’s business hours, so we might want to plan ahead. The entire process usually takes no more than 2 hours, from the trainer’s time of arrival until they leave. The on-road section of the assessment, though, should take around 45 minutes, as it will include all the road and traffic conditions your drivers experience day to day. In order to ensure everyone’s safety, some driving evaluation companies bring their own vehicles instead of using their client’s vehicles.
Once the driving assessment is completed, the results are discussed by the evaluator, the driver who performed the driving test, and the driver’s employer or safety manager. Reviewing the results together is a great way to make sure we take advantage of the results, as it allows to have a more effective conversation. Besides, it allows us to reach an agreement and develop a realistic and effective action plan to follow. This will allow our drivers, and our company, to enhance safety measures, becoming a safer and more prepared business, which will give our clients more confidence to work with us.