Resolve to Improve Driver Wellness This Year
At the beginning of the year, it is common for people to resolve to do better in the areas of health and wellness. However, these goals often fall by the wayside when met with the realities of day-to-day life after January 1st.
Obstacles to meeting wellness goals are especially prevalent among truck drivers. Spending so many hours per day behind the wheel and having limited access to healthy food options make staying healthy difficult. However, doing so is essential because of DOT physical requirements. Losing a driver to a failed physical can be a big blow to both the driver and carrier, who must now seek a replacement driver in the midst of an industry-wide driver shortage.
To meet this challenge, Stay Metrics partnered with Luma, leaders in interactive learning solutions, to develop the Drive Fit program. This set of modules focus specifically on the health concerns faced by truck drivers and how they can avoid risk factors for failing a physical.
Fit on the Road
A great example is a lesson on how to get a good workout in when you do not have much equipment. All drivers need to get started is an exercise mat or exercise band, which both take up little space in a truck cabin. This lesson teaches drivers how to quickly get their exercise routine in, perhaps while they are waiting to be unloaded or at a truck stop parking lot.
Drivers have responded very positively to these wellness lessons. With over 7,109 drivers completing at least one lesson, 51.8% have returned 4 or more times. Because these drivers are also on our rewards and recognition platform, they also received points for completing each module. 46,924 awards have gone out for wellness lessons to date.
The Benefits for Carriers
As a carrier, though, you might be wondering what the benefit of investing in driver wellness programs can be for you. The benefit to the driver is obvious, but how does it affect the company?
For carriers with company drivers that receive healthcare coverage through the company, investing in wellness can drive down healthcare costs. Healthier drivers will have fewer medical expenses. A 2010 study featured in the Harvard Business Review found that health care claims for each employee at grocery chain H-E-B participating in its wellness program were about $1,500 less.1
It’s not just company drivers!
For carriers that work primarily with owner-operators, this cost-saving from health claims may be less of a concern. However, investing in wellness programs for owner-operators can still have significant results. One often overlooked factor of wellness is how often people are off the job as a result of health concerns. Drivers that reduce their health risks through participation in company wellness programs make themselves less vulnerable to conditions that will put them out of commission. Less downtime means more miles for them and you.
Healthier drivers are also less likely to fail DOT physicals. In particular, the Drive Fit program contains a module that tackles the specific challenges drivers face to control diabetes. Following this advice will help drivers with diabetes prove to examiners that they have it under control and keep them on the road.
Setting Your Goal
This year, resolve to set up or improve your driver wellness program. Not sure how to get started? Take a look at this helpful blog post from Luma on setting goals.
Once you have read through this strategy, contact us if you would like to add Drive Fit to your existing package with Stay Metrics, or request a demo to find out all the ways Stay Metrics can help you improve the lives of drivers, and thus boost retention, at your carrier.
1Berry, Leonard L., Ann M. Mirabito, and William B. Baun. 2010. “What’s the Hard Return On Employee Wellness Programs?” Harvard Business Review 88 (12): 104–12.