Fleets online: Behavior modification

Company: Cintas Corp.

Operation: Designer and supplier of corporate uniforms, promotional products, safety products, protection services and document management services

Problem: Cintas provides services to approximately 900,000 businesses around the world. To do that, though, requires some 10,000 vehicles spread across a large area, creating a logistical challenge when enforcing company vehicle regulations.

Everything from seat-belt use to speeding policies sat on the books to protect the well-being of Cintas’ employees as well as others out on the road. But simply having policies on record was not enough to persuade drivers to follow them.

“Cintas has dedicated considerable resources to ensure [its] employees return home safely each and every day,” says Josh Moore, Cintas project manager.

While Cintas ranked among the best in its field in safety categories, the company realized it could do more. Reducing speeding incidents, crashes and increasing safety-belt use among drivers was just part of the equation. The company also realized it was wasting fuel through excessive idling and at the same time harming the environment—something environmentally responsible companies today try to prevent.

Solution: For Cintas, the solution came in the form of telematics company inthinc. Inthinc’s software, tested in 1,200 company vehicles, offered all of the answers to Cintas’ problems, from verbal coaching of drivers, to audible in-vehicle alerts, to driver and fleet scorecards.

The verbal coaching provides drivers real-time alerts anytime an unsafe driving maneuver such as speeding, aggressive acceleration or hard braking occurs. Failure to wear a seat belt also triggers alerts. Violations are recorded in the inthinc.com management portal for viewing by management. Drivers are provided a grace period to correct the action before the violation is recorded, stresses inthinc.

“We color code each driver score as a way to signal which drivers should be recognized for safe driving and which are posing the biggest threat to safety,” Moore points out. “High scores are reflected with a green color to let us, and the driver, know their driving performance is in good standing. Drivers operating recklessly on the roads and having violations are coded yellow, and multiple violations are coded red to indicate they need additional training.”

The result has been an 85% reduction in speeding and an 89% increase in seat-belt use. Overall, vehicle incidents have been decreased 46%.

Cintas is also able to use data from the in-cab devices to view performance scorecards for both individual drivers and the fleet as a whole.

“The verbal coaching feature has had a huge impact, keeping our drivers safe on the road,” Moore says. “Even with excellent driving courses and training, sometimes drivers become unaware of their driving habits. Having an in-cab device coaching drivers in real time has been a huge help in correcting dangerous driving behaviors.”

As well as improving overall driver safety, Cintas has been able to reduce carbon emissions and fuel use. By utilizing inthinc’s idle alerts, drivers are notified if a vehicle has been idling too long. Notifications are sent to managers if the driver does not respond.

While Cintas is used to delivering solutions to others, in this case, it was the company that was the recipient of some positive intervention.

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