Monetary-based fleet safety incentive programs are well-intentioned efforts by companies to encourage drivers to maintain a high level of safe driving practices. However, there may be better ways to encourage and recognize safe driving practices.
Often, the most effective recognition programs do not involve tangible recognition, such as monetary rewards. There are other non-tangible rewards that can be offered, which may be more effective in motivating employees to be safer drivers.
There are a variety of non-tangible recognition programs that can include recognition in a corporate meeting, a written commendation, a visit or dinner with senior management, patches or badges if the drivers wear uniforms, a reserved parking space, or recognition using social media. Fleet managers note that this recognition is most effective when it is given more frequently versus an annual recognition program.
Keep in mind what motivates an employee depends on the employee and you should attempt to tailor a fleet safety recognition program to meet the needs of a diverse driving population. The effectiveness of a safety recognition program is influenced by personality types. For example, employees with introverted personalities may not want public recognition and would prefer to be recognized privately.
There is also a generational difference in recognition preferences. Some companies are using Facebook-style postings to recognize drivers and allow their peers to make congratulatory comments. By matching the medium to a generational preference, it provides drivers with instant recognition and the feedback mechanism to provide instant gratification.
Lastly, to increase the effectiveness of a safety recognition program, it is important to reach out to drivers to identify what they consider important. It is also important to keep the program fair by taking into account different driving environments by normalizing scoring of drivers in urban territories vis-a-vis rural areas.