What’s Uniting Care doing to tackle this extra fatigue and distraction on the roads?
We have probably one of the best driver education programs around. We develop a lot of resources and we try to influence our drivers. We’ll use multiple mediums to get frequent messaging to our drivers to remind them to be thinking about what they’re doing. We also put a lot of work into encouraging people to speak up if they shouldn’t be on the road. We’ve had some serious crashes through Covid but we’ve made sure we’ve taken the learnings from those.
How did COVID-19 affect the way you deliver in-home care and support, particularly to older Australians and those with disabilities?
That’s a good question. As Fleet Manager you’ve got multiple stakeholders within a company or within an organisation, and externally. When Covid came along the number of stakeholders expanded and that’s a good thing. The first person I reached out to when Covid hit was the general manager of our rostering. Together, we looked at the communication with our drivers, and we looked at the data. For example we’re doing a lot of work with Toyota on in-vehicle telematics and the in-vehicle safety systems. Those are two options we’re rolling out to help empower drivers to manage risks.
How will that work?
We’re collecting the insights through data, then working at influencing the management of driver tasks going forward. Like a lot of organisations we run a client management system to help manage bookings. So, we’re taking that information and we’re matching that with our crash data, our traffic infringement data and all of our other fleet management data, like our payroll information. Then we’re sharing that with the rostering team. It means we can risk-rate a vehicle and they’ll be able to match that with the rosters for that person. So, say a particular vehicle comes up as a high risk for cornering and braking speed – they might have a whole range of key indicators – rostering will look at the vehicle and check the delivery of services. They’ll look at the number of clients, the distance travelled, the area of operations etc. And, from there, they might open a dialogue with the staff member to see how they’re coping.