Hertfordshire, UK — 21 September, 2016 – Reynolds Catering Supplies Limited, the UK’s leading independent supplier of fresh fruit and vegetables, cheese and dairy to the foodservice industry, has just signed a three year renewal contract with SmartDrive Systems for its SmartDrive Assurance video-based driver safety programme. Reynolds made the decision to extend the programme based on both the safety improvements and financial results achieved, most notably a 30 percent reduction in collisions year on year, ongoing fuel consumption improvements across the fleet and a reduction in associated costs, such as insurance premiums. In addition, using the SmartDrive Assurance programme to proactively coach and manage driver behaviour has created a culture of safer and more anticipative driving, with the SmartDrive programme delivering a 2% improvement in average mpg across the fleet in 2015.
“We have enough data now to say that SmartDrive has made a considerable contribution to enabling us to reduce collisions, save fuel and proactively work towards minimising our associated direct and indirect costs,” says Steve White, Head of Fleet at Reynolds. “We have been working with SmartDrive since 2009 and continue to generate excellent value from its video-based programme. It has become an integral part of our day-to-day operations. The SmartDrive Assurance programme continues to be a necessary component of our fleet management strategy, helping to ensure that our drivers are operating safely and efficiently on the road and that we are doing all we can to minimise our total cost of risk.”
Founded in 1945, Reynolds offers bespoke distribution solutions for some of the biggest names in foodservice, such as Itsu, Pizza Express and Bills. The company runs a 24 hour operation out of 8 strategically located depots, and runs an extensive fleet of more than 250 vehicles, from 7.5 tonne to 44 tonners.
“We have invested heavily in our fleet over the past few years in order to help satisfy growing demand, most notably from the casual dining sector,” says White. “Throughout this growth, SmartDrive’s Assurance programme has helped to propagate our culture of ‘safety first’ across all areas of the business. This is critical because the welfare of our staff and our general brand reputation rely on it. The proactive management of the fleet through improving driver behaviour is one of the key areas where a continuous focus on safety has had a significant and positive impact.”
The SmartDrive Assurance programme encompasses road facing and interior facing recorders, with sophisticated triggering algorithms. These capture detailed video and vehicle data of triggered events, which typically encompass distracted or dangerous driving incidents such as harsh braking, swerves, collisions and unsafe turning.
The triggered event videos are offloaded and automatically sent to SmartDrive’s team of professional safety reviewers, who quickly and efficiently categorise and score events against more than 75 different safety observations. These are fed directly into the SmartDrive Response Centre™, an easy-to-use online portal, for Reynolds to access. Safety or compliance critical events are prioritised and automatically placed into an online coaching suite, which is used by Reynolds’ two ROSPA certificated driver trainers to proactively coach drivers, improving fleet performance and overall driving safety.
“The benefit of the SmartDrive programme shines through in the quality of the video reviews and supporting analytics – which saves our team time and focuses them on the risk areas that are most important to our business,” explains White. “The managed service that SmartDrive provides, means that they do all the heavy lifting for us, categorising and scoring events based on the individual safety and compliance priorities that we have set within the system. The beauty of video and having skilled and consistent human eyes reviewing it is that we don’t waste time and valuable resources looking at events that aren’t risky. Our team can clearly see what is happening on the road and in the cab at the time of a collision or triggered event. This means we can capture the true root cause of an event that would not be possible from just a telematics trace.”
Reynolds’ safety priorities are categorised based on risk. Events in the high risk categories include operating a handheld device, drowsiness and falling asleep, smoking, distraction, excessive speeding, competitive and aggressive driving, close following, not scanning the road ahead and unsafe braking or turning.
In the case of Reynolds, captured events are offloaded in two ways; immediately via the cellular network or via WIFI when the vehicles return to the yard, depending on the depot. “The WIFI offload is historical from our earlier days with SmartDrive,” says White. “We now have 2 out of our 8 depots and the associated vehicles running with direct cellular offload, which provides us with more immediate access to critical events. This gives us immediate insight and enables us to accelerate the positive impact to the business in both safety and fuel consumption.”
In these times of driver shortage, Reynolds operates a zero agency driver policy. It has found over the years, based on the evidence provided by the SmartDrive programme, that agency drivers were six times more likely to have an accident than employed drivers. At the beginning of 2015, Reynolds launched its own driver development scheme, taking on staff with no previous HGV driving experience, who and then fully supported during training for relevant licences and other requirements such as Driver CPC. To date, the company has developed 50 professional drivers through this scheme. White says that, “80% of our drivers have been with us long term. This is because we put the drivers at the heart of our business and support them on and off the road. Our driver development scheme is showing fantastic results, with a high percentage of younger drivers coming through that now view driving as a professional career.”
He continues, “All of our drivers engage with our strong safety culture. It is part of our core operational DNA and the SmartDrive programme is a vital component of this. We haven’t experienced any problems with driver acceptance of video technology in the vehicles, predominantly as it is firmly embedded in our induction programmes. Furthermore, in many cases, it has been instrumental in exonerating ‘not at fault’ drivers and helped protect against fraudulent claims.”
In addition to improving driver behaviour and reducing collisions, the use of video has also helped Reynolds speed claims resolution. “Our insurance provider is highly appreciative of the benefits of the SmartDrive programme. I’m convinced that if we didn’t have SmartDrive we’d have twice the accidents and would waste much more time and money in investigating and settling claims. The video-based programme is a key enabler in the proactive management of risk across our fleet and the results are clearly seen in the ongoing safety, operational and financial improvements,” White concludes.
About SmartDrive Systems
SmartDrive Systems, the recipient of Frost & Sullivan’s Customer Value Leadership Award for Video Safety Solutions, gives fleets and drivers unprecedented driving performance insight and analysis, helping save fuel, expenses and lives. Its video analysis, predictive analytics and personalized performance program help fleets improve driving skills, lower operating costs and deliver significant ROI. With an easy-to-use managed service, fleets and drivers can access and self-manage driving performance anytime, anywhere. The Company, which is ranked as one of the fastest growing companies by Deloitte’s Technology Fast 500™, has compiled the world’s largest storehouse of more than 140 million analyzed risky-driving events. SmartDrive Systems is based in San Diego, Calif., and employs over 500 people worldwide.
A family business with a passion for produce, Reynolds is the UK’s leading independent distributor of fresh fruit, vegetables, dairy and cheese to the foodservice industry. Recognised for reliability, flexibility and exceptional customer service, Reynolds gets the very best fresh produce from field to fork. Reynolds is trusted to deliver to some of the most respected names in the catering industry such as Bills, Marriott and BaxterStorey. More information can be found at www.reynolds-cs.com.
For more information on SmartDrive Systems, please visit uk.smartdrive.net.
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- Posted by Melissa.Senoff@smartdrive.net
- On September 21, 2016