Royal Mail has one of the largest fleets in the UK. As a consequence, it has 90,000 people who drive as part of their job. In 2007 Phil O’Gorman (the General Manager of Royal Mail Vehicle Services) developed a proposal to introduce mandatory risk assessments for all drivers. Part of the programme was to fit telemetry (vehicle tracking devices) on 8,000 of its vehicles.
To support the business case, comparative data from the Fleet Safety Benchmarking Project was used. The data compared Royal Mail’s performance against many other external organisations. Royal Mail had found it historically difficult to compare itself with companies of a similar sized fleet or operation. Through the Benchmarking Project, Royal Mail was able to find data on similar companies.
Pilots identified the benefits of both driver risk assessments and telemetry. The business case was then signed-up to by the Royal Mail Board. The company is now rolling-out risk assessments to all its drivers. During 2008 and 2009 over 53,000 have had their driving risk exposure measured on ‘Virtual Risk Manager®‘. Almost 30,000 have fully completed the on-line risk assessment, 22,000 the online training modules and 15,000 DVLA licence checks.
Installing telemetry has enabled Royal Mail to measure drivers’ behaviours, eg harsh braking and speeding. Data from telemetry, risk assessments, licence checks and accidents are being integrated into Virtual Risk Manager. This is enabling Royal Mail to build comprehensive driver risk profiles. These profiles will then be used to focus training interventions. The objective is to improve driver safety, reduce accidents and costs.
Already the data is showing positive effects on collisions and costs in the project areas. These positive results are a key to improving the overall safety climate of the Royal Mail organisation, and have been sustained over several years.
A more detailed independent evaluation of the success of the Royal Mail program can be seen at the Driving for Better Business website by clicking here.
Royal Mail has continued to improve its long term road safety performance, which has been reflected though an increasing number of road safety achievement awards. For more details click here.