Advice from an Expert: Easing into Online Orientation

During the Coronavirus outbreak, we’ve been asking experts for advice on how to adapt to an evolving trucking industry. Our peer group has come up with some great ideas on how to keep rolling during a national pandemic.

What was their ultimate goal? Business as usual.

We have seen businesses face new challenges, like how to comply with social distancing regulations without a loss in productivity. Or how to continue on-boarding new drivers while limiting face-to-face interactions. This new state of trucking requires creative solutions.

Pat Landreth is the Vice President of Human Resources and Safety at Ozark Motor Lines. His company has put a big emphasis on efficiency during the crisis. They have ensured their employees that they will never shut down, only find ways to improvise. One of the tools they are using is Infinit-I Workforce Solution’s learning management system. The technology allows them to deliver remote training and communication.

Pat sat down with Jay Wommack, CEO of Infinit-I Workforce Solutions, to discuss Ozark’s transition to remote online orientation. Pat’s company can now successfully conduct most of their orientation online. Ozark’s goal is to put everything they can online without sacrificing the quality of traditional orientation.

Drivers show up at the terminal ready to roll.

They have reduced their orientation from 3 days to 1 day since drivers can do most of their orientation from a smart phone. Since transitioning, they have seen an increase of participation from their new hires.

They are even saving money on their motel spending. The drivers get a truck as soon as they arrive on the yard. They can just spend the night in the tractor instead of being shuttled back and forth to a motel. Imagine how much money they are saving by eliminating just one night in a motel per driver.

Pat was even able to record the presentations that were normally given in orientation. The drivers would watch them before arriving to save time. He did encounter some push back when he pitched the idea to his coworkers. Some of them were skeptical because they fear change. Some of them were only hesitant because they did not want to be video recorded.

After he explained they would no longer have to do a weekly presentation, everyone jumped on board.

Pre-orientation packets include a lot of safety training too. Ozark assigns each new driver several safety videos to watch during orientation. The system also allows them to give follow up assignments weekly or monthly. Drivers are familiar with the format as soon as they clear orientation, so watching the monthly safety videos has become a habit.

Give your drivers what they want.

Drivers are eager to get on the road from the moment they get a job offer. Most drivers hate the orientation phase of employment because they have to sit around for days waiting for the keys to their new truck. But with online orientation smoothing the process, they appreciate diving headfirst into the hands-on tests. Paperwork, driving tests, and drug tests are completed in less than one day.

Ozark has been able to offer multiple orientations per week because of the efficiency of remote orientation. They have more time now that in-person orientation only takes one day at the terminal.

Because of the national crisis, logistics companies are looking for new and innovative ways to streamline their procedures. Infinit-I Workforce Solutions wants to reach out and help the industry in any way possible. That’s why we are offering our learning management system free for 30 days to new users. See how remote online orientation can improve your drivers experience.

If communication and training are your priority, our technology makes it simple.

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