Driving for Better Business (DfBB), the government-backed Highways England programme to help employers reduce work-related road risk, has launched a new online gap analysis tool to help organisations manage those who drive for work. The new tool enables employers to identify any areas in their current risk and safety management practices that are missing or could be improved. It will also highlight what activities are considered to be a minimum standard for legal compliance, in line with HSE guidance, as well as demonstrating what leading employers and regulators would consider to be good practice.
The online gap analysis tool assesses four main areas of work-related road risk. Each of these are essential to determine which areas of the driving for work policies need improving:
- Senior Management’s understanding of work-related road risk, as well as the operational processes and procedures that need to be in place to manage risk effectively.
- Necessary checks that drivers are eligible and competent to drive for work
- The standards and systems companies have in place to ensure all vehicles are safe and legal
- External pressures may affect driver’s ability to complete a journey safely
Recent research commissioned by Driving for Better Business (DfBB) highlighted a number of concerns that would be identified by the new gap analysis tool.
- More than half (53%) of Directors surveyed were found to completely misunderstand a vital area of their legal responsibilities around employees who use their own cars for work
- 41% of companies had no Driving for Work policy yet this is a basic requirement setting out the procedures to ensure your drivers behave safely and your vehicles are roadworthy. Of the 59% that did have a policy, unbelievably, some had not included awareness of the policy in the staff induction process for drivers.
- 29% of companies couldn’t say exactly how many drivers they had. It sounds a simple task but the reason this question is so important is that if you aren’t certain you know how many of your employees are driving on business, you can’t possibly have a robust audit trail to demonstrate that they are being managed effectively.
- 62% of employers said they did not check whether those using their own car for business were correctly insured and 30% of the drivers surveyed admitted they weren’t insured for business journeys.
- One in four leaders are failing to check for valid driving licenses of their employees – a legal requirement.
- The study also found one in six employees who drive for work (17%) said they have been involved in an incident when driving for work due to a phone call from a colleague.
Simon Turner, Campaign Manager for Driving for Better Business said “The research shows that many businesses are unaware of the steps they should be taking to effectively manage work-related road risk and not all executive directors fully understand their legal responsibilities for managing staff who drive for work.”
“The good news is that better management of those who drive for work can bring significant benefits in terms of reducing risk, controlling costs and enhancing efficiency. On top of that it can also reduce environmental impact and improve driver wellbeing. In short – it makes good business sense all round.”
“With our new gap analysis tool, safety professionals can easily identify where improvements can be made, along with free resources to help fill any gaps.”