The Role of PEOs in Trucking Safety and Compliance
Trucking is a very crucial industry and because of the hazards associated with the transportation industry, safety compliance is of utmost importance. People affiliated with trucking know that failure to comply with safety regulations puts the company at risk of fines and more significantly, increases the risk of a fatality for the drivers and others on the road.
One effective way to minimize such risks is to partner with Professional Employer Organizations (PEOs). Companies that do so have the advantage of staying abreast of safety compliance regulations and provide strategies to implement successful protocols that mitigate a company’s exposure. Beyond the assistance with compliance, A PEO partners with you to manage routine HR functions, and administrative tasks, payroll, benefits, and wellness initiatives. The main emphasis of a PEO is to help their customers stay in compliance, up to date with legal and regulatory changes and thereby avoid issues.
Here is how PEOs can contribute to your safety and compliance:
It can be hard to keep up with all the federal and state regulations you must comply with. Regulations change all the time, and as your company grows it may become subject to even more rules.
Having a full-time compliance expert is beyond the reach of most smaller trucking companies, but without one it's easy to get bogged down in the complexities. PEOs have a compliance team that stays up-to-date with the regulations and helps you navigate them, reducing your risk of violations and penalties. The sharing of this expertise with their clients and the economies of scales keeps these service costs at an affordable price.
Safety Policies and Procedures
A PEO that has experience with multiple trucking companies has historical practices to know what is effective in your industry. They can help you develop and implement safety policies carefully tailored to your specific company culture and yet meets compliance standards.
For example, they can produce guidelines for driver behavior, load securement, vehicle maintenance, and hours of service regulations. They can also help you develop policies to protect people at loading docks with best practices for proper lifting and certified forklift operators.
Safety Culture Promotion
Creating a good safety culture is often a challenge but is crucial in the trucking industry. Management must truly lead by example in order for employees to buy into a robust safety culture. One simple example of this is to manage delivery dates/times so drivers are not at risk or feel compelled to exceed the regulatory timeframes.
In order to have a valid safety culture, a company needs to promote safety on a regular basis. One way to accomplish that is to hold regular safety meetings. These gatherings provide an inclusive platform to discuss, review, and reinforce safety protocols and best practices to ensure their efficient adherence. Companies that provide the time and resources to promote safety gain a significant advantage not only in the level of safety, but this is reflected in CSA scores and better retention rates!
A PEO can work with you to help foster a culture that prioritizes safety and compliance. Ironically, a good safety culture encourages prompt reporting of near misses, incidents and accidents. Timely reporting has proven to lower costs affiliated with a specific claim and as a result, lowers the overall expense.
Drug and Alcohol Testing
Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations mandate drug and alcohol testing for CDL drivers. No one wants drivers working under the influence operating on the highways and roadways across the USA.
PEOs can help establish and manage a proper testing program that meets regulatory requirements. In partnering with a PEO, your time can be focused on activities that increase your revenue and enhance your company culture rather than administrative tasks “behind the scenes”.
Claims Management and Workers' Compensation
Even the best safety culture cannot prevent all accidents. Weather, other drivers, and sudden mechanical failure can all cause an accident and potentially result in injury to your driver. Because of the structure of a PEO arrangement, your employees are covered on the PEO's workers' compensation insurance.
The PEO bears the responsibility and has the expertise to efficiently manage any claim. Again, this allows your company management to focus on revenue-generating activities while ensuring your employees receive proper care AND the company has experts to minimize the cost of the claim. These efforts mitigate the impact of an increase in premiums by sharing the risk within the PEO entity.
With a PEO, you have access to their risk management specialists who can audit your safety measures and help you implement preventive measures. Partnering with a PEO gives your trucking company the benefit of their experience and resources. You can focus on your core operations while promoting a strong commitment to safety and compliance. This saves money, improves your reputation, and helps attract & retain drivers.
To enhance your safety culture, gain better retention of your current drivers, improve your CSA scores, chat with a PEO! Click here to start the conversation— contact a representative at PRO Resources today.