Graham Hurdle, who recently sold Stafford-based fleet risk management and driver training specialist Pro-Drive to IAM Fleet, claims psychometric testing is over-mystifying the process of identifying whether a driver falls into a high, medium or low-risk category. He called for a return to traditional driver training values that he claimed have been working for decades.
Mr Hurdle said: “If you look back over the last 20 years before the introduction of software-based or online solutions, the major players in the driver risk assessment and fleet driver training sector have not been using psychometric techniques.
“A qualified Advanced Driving Instructor would spend time with a driver and use their expertise to assess that person’s risk. At no time was a psychometric element involved.
“Now that we have software companies either developing their own systems or influencing some of the major driver training companies with ideas that have not been borne out of genuine experience, we’re being told that the way drivers have been assessed for the last 20 years is wrong and online assessments must take a new approach that includes psychometrics.”
However, Mr Hurdle insists that the growth of online solutions is bringing the fleet sector enormous benefits. “All fleet operators know they need to meet their health and safety obligations with regard to their at-work drivers,” said Hurdle. “But many are put off by the costs, and they are also concerned about the time and expense of sending staff on in-vehicle assessments and defensive driver training courses.”
Mr Hurdle was speaking as he launched a new company, E Training World. The new programme offers drivers a risk assessment at their desk, with instant feedback. Those at high risk are advised to undertake further training with IAMPro-Drive, of which Mr Hurdle is managing director.