It takes just one reckless delivery driver automobile accident to give the perception that your restaurant delivery business is more concerned with speed – and the bottom line – than public safety. The key to avoiding serious injuries and expensive property damage is to promote safety by establishing a safety plan at the highest level, while requiring that employees at all levels stick to it.
The hiring process
Although it can be tough to find good employees today, never cut corners when hiring delivery drivers. A good driver helps your business’s image, but a good and safe driver will mitigate your exposure to a claim while boosting public perception. While sorting through delivery driver candidate applications, follow these tips:
- Good drivers only: Review candidate’s Motor Vehicle Records (MVRs) consistently. Partner with an online vendor who can provide instant access to Motor Vehicle Records (MVRs) and make sure the candidate’s driving history meets your insurance company’s standards.
- Be selective: Require a minimum of two years’ driving experience.
- Make it mutual: Have the driver sign a driver’s agreement outlining their responsibilities.
- Go local: Consider candidates who are already familiar with the roads on which they’ll work to increase confidence behind the wheel.
- Be thorough: Request a valid certificate of insurance for their automobile.
Work to eliminate distracted driving
- Mentor new hires: Have management or experienced delivery drivers ride with a new driver until confident in their safety practices.
- No texts, no wrecks: Establish a formal cell phone use policy, like the one promoted by the National Safety Council and incentivize compliance.
- Implement new technology: Consider partnering with a vendor who can assist with technology that tracks driving habits.
- Monthly check-ins: Continuously train managers and employees on safety practices with monthly topics. Insurance providers should be able to provide owners with pertinent topics.
Safety program maintenance
- Take it seriously: Discipline bad drivers who receive complaints or get in accidents.
- But remain positive: Reward safe stores.
- Stay current: Review MVRs annually for acceptability, at minimum.
- Double check: Inspect the driver’s vehicle with a safety and appearance checklist.
- Remember hazards exist off the road, too: Communicate neighborhood safety concerns, set reasonable delivery timelines with customers during inclement weather and prohibit deliveries to poorly lit locations.