The realisation of a successful courier business requires safety conscious drivers who can deliver parcels within a specific time frame while still adhering to road rules and safety systems.

We have all been there…stuck on the highway behind a large truck which seems to be travelling at 20km/h. Meanwhile, you are late for work, you might miss an appointment and you can’t possibly fathom why the truck would have chosen the highway instead of a back road.

While we have all wished at some point in time that trucks had their own special highway, they don’t. Having them all on our back roads would wreck havoc on road maintenance systems and would most probably just cause more frustration when you get off the highway.

In addition, think about the poor truck drivers. How much patience, concentration and Red Bull must it take to keep yourself and the large load you are transporting safe while tiny cars driving at 120  km/h are whizzing past you, overtaking you and honking at you like a mad woman?

Here’s to the good truck drivers out there. Those who help carry our logistics industry to success. Here’s to the code 14’s who stay in the slow lane and drive at a reasonable speed limit.

Subsequently, let’s give thanks to the courier companies who place safety conscious drivers on our roads and ensure that their fleets are roadworthy, thereby, making SA’s roads just a little bit safer.

How can you be one of those companies?

Place a sticker with your business phone number on the back of your fleet and ask the public to phone should a driver exhibit unsafe behavior on the road.

You can also install a tracker in your fleet, which will not only come in handy when a truck gets stolen, but will also help you monitor driver behavior.

Ensure that your drivers know the road rules. Just because a driver has a code 14 license does not mean they will automatically adhere to and know all the road rules necessary for safe driving. Hold regular courses or training meetings where you reinforce road rules and encourage and reward safe driving behavior.

Plan optimal routes. This will not only ensure that parcels and loads get delivered to customers within a reasonable time frame, but will also cause less frustration for drivers.

Always maintain fleets. You will greatly benefit from making your drivers aware of the performance required from a road worthy vehicle. Teach your drivers to conduct safety checks and to be aware of vehicle performance at all times.

Do not encourage bad behavior. When  drivers miss their delivery times, do not blindly encourage them to make delivery times. Rather, ask and analyze why the delivery time was missed. Would another route prove more efficient, were roadworks an obstacle, was the driver travelling on busy roads in peak traffic?

Ensuring an optimal route for your driver could eliminate most of these challenges and assist in optimising delivery times while decreasing bad performance.