Driver Incentive Program Ideas: Five Ways to Enhance Your Program

driver incentive program ideas

In our last article, we described how dash cams equipped with artificial intelligence and machine learning can help you establish accurate driver scoring for your driver gamification and incentive program. We closed by mentioning that Gridline can help you analyze your driver scoring data so that you can run your program as accurately as possible.

But once you have the right technology in place and are gathering information on driver performance, what exactly should you be doing to reward your drivers? And how should your program work? Here are five tips—practical driver incentive program ideas for fleets of all sizes and in all industries.

1. Set goals

It’s all too easy to find creative driver incentive program ideas online, choose the most appealing from among them, and then set up a program that’s tailored to your company’s culture. And with a simple approach like this, you can probably drive some improvement in driver performance.

But chances are, you’re not interested in “some improvement.” You want to launch an incentive program that consistently motivates your underperforming drivers to become assets to your team, and your great drivers to become superstars.

So, before you even begin gathering driver incentive program ideas, sit down and think about what you’re trying to accomplish. What’s your top goal? To reduce accidents? Increase driver retention? Drive improvement among all your drivers? Reduce fuel costs? These are all worthwhile goals, but each one will require you to tailor your incentive program in specific ways. Designate one main goal for your program, and then start planning towards it. You can also list secondary goals and tweak your program to support them, but be careful not to bog down your program with so many conflicting goals that it ends up not quite delivering on any of them.

2. Put the right technology in place

As we mentioned in our last article, AI-powered dash cams should be at the heart of any driver incentive program. They can not only record your drivers’ performance at all times but also recognize key objects—such as speed limit signs, traffic lights, stop signs, and pedestrians—in your drivers’ surroundings.

Be sure to connect your dash cams with myGeotab software, which will make your life much easier by letting you view all your driver performance information through one interface. And then use Gridline to analyze performance data so you can be sure you’re rewarding performance accurately.

3. Get buy-in from your drivers

No incentive program will be effective unless your drivers buy into it. If drivers feel monitored and micromanaged, they’ll ignore your program and consider their jobs to be “business as usual.”

Here’s where technology can help you again. Be sure you pitch your incentive program as a game or competition. Establish an online high scorers’ list, whether it’s on a corporate portal or, better yet, in a specially designed app. Make it clear to all drivers that they’ll be competing for top prizes, and that the best performers among them will be rewarded with prizes, perks, and the admiration of the entire company.

Most human beings have a natural competitive edge. And people love games. By gamifying your program and turning it into a competition, you’ll help your drivers get comfortable with the idea of having cameras in their trucks.

4. Design a scoring system that supports your goals

Way back in step 1, you decided on a main goal, and perhaps a few secondary goals, for your driver incentive program. Now, you’ll figure out how to award points to drivers in a way that helps them work towards those goals.

Suppose your goal was to reduce accidents. You might start by identifying the behaviors that have led to the most accidents in the past: probably speeding, texting or eating while driving, ignoring road conditions, and driving while tired. You could then design a points system that subtracts points from a driver’s score for each of these infractions.

But don’t stop there. You should also award points for behaviors that prevent accidents—such as adhering to stop signs and following other vehicles at a safe distance. Be sure you also configure your technology to send your drivers real-time alerts on their performance, so that they can immediately correct themselves.

5. Choose your incentives

Here’s the fun part: now you get to go through all your driver incentive program ideas and choose the ones that will work best for your organization.

The most obvious incentive is the one nobody will ever turn down: cash. Here are a few driver incentive program ideas you may not have considered:

  • Gift cards for restaurants or stores
  • Passes for fun activities or weekend getaways
  • Personalized plaques, trophies, coins, or pins
  • A company jacket or hat that identifies the driver as an All-Star Driver
  • Truck signs that display the driver’s achievement
  • Name mentioned on the company website and in the company newsletter
  • The right to select driving routes or days off
  • Points to spend on designated prizes
  • Travel gadgets that make life on the road more comfortable

Depending on the size of your fleet and their interests, you’ll want to make sure to pick incentives that are exciting for your drivers and that make sense for your business to invest in.

Let’s Talk More About Driver Incentives

We at Gridline have much more to say about getting the most from your drivers—and we’re eager to hear about your goals. Schedule a call with us today to discuss driver incentive program ideas.