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How to Manage Driver Transition to ELDs

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Driver Adoption of ELDs

1/22/2016 by Caroline Ailanthus

The federal government’s Final Rule concerning electronic logging devices (ELDs) has stirred up the transportation industry. Questions regarding compliance have inspired a great deal of concern for carriers. The process of becoming compliant can seem daunting to carriers. Luckily, compliance can become a lot easier with the right ELD provider.

ELDs come at varying costs, and are all able to track driver hours of service (HOS). Some ELDs go above and beyond, tracking fuel use, unsafe driving patterns, vehicle usage. Carriers should first determine what they need from an ELD before selecting a provider.

Once a carrier has selected an ELD provider, the next step is getting drivers on board. This process is usually perceived as the most difficult part of the transition. While it is true that ELDs represent a large change in how drivers work, drivers are quick to realize the benefits ELDs provide. These benefits include less paperwork, more profitable routes, and more rest time. Carriers can use a variety of tactics to ensure the transition to ELDs is as smooth as possible.

Transitioning to ELDs starts with a thorough understanding of what ELDs are. ELDs are, first and foremost, electronic versions of the paper logs that carriers have been using for years. They automatically record all Hours of Service (HOS) information that drivers need to record to remain compliant. This automation makes several day-to-day tasks much easier. Inspections are faster and simpler because all logs are electronically accessible. ELDs are often bundled together with various telematics services that further simplify tasks – services such as two-way communication dispatch or navigation.

The Final Rule only recently became law on December 11, 2015, yet many carriers have already invested in ELDs. These devices reduce paper usage and dramatically simplify management by providing real-time information on which drivers are available for work and which are coming up on a break. Alerts provide drivers and managers with warnings to avoid HOS violations. Bundled features, such as vehicle tracking and maintenance updates, carry their unique advantages.

That’s one less thing to worry about and a lot more options for running a successful fleet.

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