Why Grads of Dispatcher Schools Work Hard to Give Drivers Plenty of Home Time
Dispatchers are the vital link between clients and drivers. They are the fellow professionals that drivers rely on to engage with, and that connection is one that can have a huge impact on the effectiveness of a transport company. Dispatchers expect drivers to be flexible and provide on-time and safe deliveries, and in return drivers expect dispatchers to strive to let them enjoy time at home as much as the schedule permits. In fact, helping drivers get home is part of the “deal” in a healthy dispatcher/driver relationship.
Why is it so important for drivers to have plenty of home time, and what can dispatchers do to help? Read on to find out!
Graduates of Dispatch Courses Know Home Time Affects Driver Retention
There is no denying that the employee turnover rate among truck drivers is a major issue for the trucking industry. One of the major stress factors identified by a recent study is a low amount of home time. Up to 13 per cent of drivers that left a company cited this as the major reason for their departure, with an inability to be home for evenings and weekends having a poor effect on personal and family relationships.
Graduates of a dispatch course know the importance of trying to help drivers be there for birthdays, soccer games, date nights, and other personal dates that really matter, while balancing deliver times and vital broker relationships. Setting expectations, using routing technology to its fullest extent, and making effective communication with drivers a priority are some of the best ways to ensure better driver satisfaction with regards to home time.
Grads of Dispatcher Schools Know the Seriousness of Driver Hours Running Out
Graduates of dispatcher schools know it’s important that drivers keep a daily record of several crucial metrics and resources. These include everything from traffic conditions, driver locations to—crucially—driver hours.
Any individual driver of a commercial motor vehicle will have a set amount of hours—known as hours of service—that they can legally drive before a required break must be put in place. This also includes a weekly limit. Past that daily or weekly limit, a driver isn’t legally allowed to get back on the road.
A bad scenario can easily develop where drivers hit this limit while still being some distance from home, ruining their chances of making it back for a much-anticipated family event. This can lead to everything from third party transport to accommodation, or even—worst of all—a driver lying about their hours of service so that they can get home on time. Leeway on this front is set to be constrained even more in coming years with the required roll-out of Electronic Logging Devices (ELD) on trucks, with a hard stop being an absolute legal requirement once hours have been used up. The effective dispatcher will be able to completely minimize these sorts of occurrences through thorough planning, effectively making sure that drivers and companies stay compliant, while helping to boost driver satisfaction at the same time.
Health and Stress Issues Are Improved By More Home Time
As the saying goes, “There’s no place like home,” and that goes double for the regenerative effects of family time and being able to sleep in your own bed. Studies have shown the increased benefits that sleeping in a familiar environment, like home, can have for the average person in terms of quality rest. The health benefits of maintaining a robust social life have also been highlighted by clinical studies, with those who maintain strong social ties likely to live 7.5 years longer on average. These are precisely the kind of ties that are negatively affected by long periods alone on the road.
These points underline how spending time at home is particularly important for truck drivers. In fact, many companies now provide drivers with a guaranteed minimum amount of home time per month. Dispatchers should work as much as possible with upper management to deliver this, which will contribute to improving the company’s retention rates as well as keep drivers happy and healthy.
Do you want a rewarding career in the transportation sector?
Contact us at Automotive Training Centres to sign up for dispatcher training in Montreal today.
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