Companies that suffered with high vehicle accident rates, extensive vehicle repair bills and significant delays to their distribution service due to the snow last year should set out and communicate their winter driving plans to both staff and customers in advance.
Jonathan Mosley, director of sales and marketing at leading on-line fleet risk assessment and training company E-Training World, advises that businesses should set out their corporate policy now to enable smoother management of difficult conditions when they arrive.
“Our advice is for companies to agree now what they plan to do if the weather is so bad that driving is potentially dangerous,” said Jonathan. “Because when this happens, part of the chaos is caused as a result of many drivers making their own decisions as to whether they should make a trip instead of working to an agreed company stance; and it’s a fact of life that some drivers have more of a ‘gung ho’ spirit than others!
Jonathan advises that rather than leave it to individual drivers to choose whether to get behind the wheel and set off the morning they find snow on the ground, it’s better to have an agreed and circulated company policy and tell clients in advance what action will be taken. This could involve meetings being conducted online for that period, or routine deliveries scheduled for the next most convenient time.
“Of course there are many businesses that rely on daily deliveries and arrival of stock, however if its agreed that snow could stop all incoming and outgoing deliveries anyway, its more pro-active to contact customers and suppliers now to lay out the procedure if these cannot be made.”
Jonathan also says that adopting a professional and pro-active approach is good for a company’s image.
“Being decisive and having a plan is good for a company’s reputation and has the potential knock-on effect of causing other businesses to do the same, which could remove a large percentage of vehicles from the road during heavy snow.
“After all, many of the drivers we saw on the News who were stranded last year were in cars and were not delivering anything. They were simply stranded, or having accidents, because they’d decided to make an unnecessary journey either to and from work, or to a meeting, probably because they believed their employer expected them to.”