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Time Management Tips for Drivers: Maximizing Productivity on the Road

tips for drivers

Looking for tips for drivers? Well, in the delivery industry, timely delivery of goods and packages to customers is of the utmost importance. Most online shoppers around the world expect to receive their orders in a timely manner. 41% of global shoppers said they hope to receive their package within 24 hours of purchasing it. While 24% of surveyed buyers reported wanting their order delivered in less than two hours after purchasing. 

Therefore, as a delivery company owner or delivery driver — either long haul trucker or local delivery driver — it is essential to properly utilize your time on the road to maximize your productivity while driving and meet up with customers’ delivery schedules. 

Time management is necessary for drivers and logistics company owners in the delivery industry. Therefore, you need to understand how to use your time wisely to maximize productivity. The freedom of truck driving and delivery driving is what makes it popular. While independence can be an asset, having the necessary tips for managing your time is essential. 

In this article, we’ll share and explain several essential tips for logistics business and delivery and truck drivers to reduce the time spent on the road and maximize productivity by delivering goods and packages faster. 

tips for drivers

7 Essential Time Management Tips for Drivers

Delivering customer’s orders on time is essential in the delivery business. However, several factors, like bad vehicles, package label errors, or traffic jams, can cause delays on the road. But with appropriate planning and the right tip at your fingertips, you can easily avoid some of the causes of delivery delays

Planning Your Route Efficiently

Delay caused by traffic congestion due to road construction, rush hour, or even bad weather conditions is one of the biggest issues associated with being a delivery driver or running a logistics business. The best way to be productive while on a delivery trip is to keep moving to your destination; traffic jams make this impossible. 

While it is almost impossible to avoid traffic jams totally, there are measures you can take as a logistics company owner or delivery driver. One of these is to use GPS and navigation apps effectively.  GPS and navigation apps help to avoid areas with traffic congestion. They help drivers find the fastest, shortest, and best possible route to their destination. 

These apps can be installed on the driver’s phone for easy access and use during a trip. It’s also essential to turn on the voice navigation assistant. That way, you’ll be able to hear directions aloud while driving. In instances where you run into unexpected traffic, you can easily find a new route using your navigation app. 

While it is essential to utilize GPS and navigation apps, it’s also vital that delivery companies and drivers include rest stops and breaks into the route. Driving long distance or interstate can be tiring and challenging, so including stops for drivers to take an overnight rest, a quick nap, a bowel movement, or even stretching their legs will help ease stress and improve their productivity for the rest of the trip. 

Prioritizing Tasks

One of the best tips for drivers is to prioritize tasks. Failure to plan delivery tasks often leads to random deliveries and time wasting. When delivering items, it is necessary to have a list of deliveries to be completed according to their priorities. Some customers often request same-day delivery, while others request on-demand delivery. As a result, on-demand deliveries which have a short delivery time need to be prioritized. 

They are often classified as critical tasks that must be completed before others. When drivers fail to prioritize them, it causes delayed deliveries, leading to poor customer satisfaction and feedback. 

When making deliveries based on priority, it’s essential to use a multi-stop route planner for better optimization and delivery efficiency. Multi-stop planners are used to create the best route that effectively connects several stops or destinations. It considers key factors like traffic conditions, distance, vehicle capacity, and delivery window. That way, drivers can make stops at strategic locations along their delivery route even when on priority runs, allowing them to manage their time and reduce time wasting effectively. 

Time Management Tools and Apps

Without a proper outline of all deliveries to be completed, how much time to spend on each drop and stop, and the total distance to be covered for a specific date, drivers can spend more time than required, leading to delays and reduced productivity. 

One of the best ways drivers can maximize their productivity on the road while delivering packages is to use time management applications and tools designed for them. These apps and tools, often delivery management software, are specifically designed to help delivery drivers manage their time and be more productive. 

Some of these tools can help drivers keep track of their schedules to ensure they’re spot-on with their deliveries and avoid any mix-ups. Some can also help calculate the total mileage for an entire trip. That way, you can purchase enough fuel for the journey to avoid unexpected and unnecessary stops.

tips for drivers

Healthy Habits on the Road

Maintaining a healthy habit while behind the wheel is necessary to increase your efficiency as a driver. However, it is easier said than done. Spending several hours delivering customers’ packages on the road can be physically and mentally challenging. The reduced human interaction can be especially challenging to mental health.

To ensure you’re at your best, you can practice several healthy habits to improve your mental and physical state, such as getting proper sleep before starting the journey, staying in communication with loved ones, resting while tired, or performing stress-reducing exercises. 

Sleeping properly before each trip can give you enough mental and physical rest ahead of the trip. Regular communication also helps to give you motivation and support, especially when on a long journey. Performing exercises and eating meals with proper nutrition can also help you maintain a healthy habit while driving. Engaging in 30 minutes of exercise can help reduce your stress level significantly. It could be a brisk walk, jogging, or low-intensity exercises like yoga. Low-stress levels can increase your focus while driving and improve your productivity. 

Additionally, a proper diet helps prevent any stomach bugs. So it’s best to consume light meals while on a delivery trip to avoid frequent stops when you feel like throwing up, which could make you miss scheduled time. 

Effective Communication

Other top tips for drivers is to maintain effective communication. As a driver, it’s vital to be in regular communication with the fleet manager and customer. For delivery companies, it’s also essential to regularly update customers on their package’s status and drivers of any change in delivery time or location. 

As a logistics company owner, having a platform for communication between the dispatch or delivery drivers, clients, and other workers is necessary to manage the delivery operation efficiently. For drivers, it’s necessary to avoid time wasting while on a trip. One of the best ways to achieve this is by using technology, typically a management system or software that supports multiparty communication.

That way, drivers can easily communicate with fleet managers if there’s a delay due to a faulty vehicle and request for a load transfer. Customers or clients can also prevent failed delivery by communicating a change in their location, allowing the drivers to reroute the 

Drivers can also use common technology solutions like text messages, phone calls, and social media channels for effective communication. 

Handling Paperwork and Documentation

One of the most time-consuming yet vital aspects of the delivery business is paperwork and documentation. Order confirmation, customer delivery details, and order details are some of the information that is required to be recorded and stored by logistics businesses. On the other hand, drivers also need to ensure proof of delivery by collecting customer signatures, time of delivery, shippers information, and sometimes, issuing invoices. 

Carrying out all these tasks manually through the use of paperwork and documentation can cause a significant administrative and delivery delay. However, they’re manageable. Delivery businesses can file paper in an orderly manner to ensure easy access to the records when needed. Paperwork also needs to be stored in a dry room to prevent liquid from spilling on it, which can cause it to become damaged. 

For drivers, carrying only the required paperwork when making deliveries is essential. That way, you can avoid any mix-ups and ensure customers only fill and sign their allocated documents. For a more orderly process, each customer’s paperwork can be attached to their package so it’s only brought out when their package is being delivered. 

However, to avoid the delay and stress involved in manual paperwork, administrative heads of logistics businesses and drivers alike can easily switch to an automated, much more secure, and damage-proof option by adopting Detrack’s Electronic Proof of Delivery (ePOD). It is a revolutionary tool that helps your delivery business put an end to paperwork and go completely electronic. 

Essentially, it’s the digital version of physical proof of delivery and can be used by drivers and delivery businesses as a record showing that a particular shipment has been delivered to the intended customer. By using Detrack’s ePOD, drivers can avoid wasting time manually signing delivery papers. Furthermore, Detrack’s ePOD can be shared with customers or suppliers, allowing for more effective coordination and communication. 

tips for drivers

Stress Management

Driving for long hours can be very challenging, and without proper measures for stress management, it could lead to burnout while on a delivery trip. When stressed during a trip, drivers often take long hours resting, sleeping, or clearing their minds — all of which can affect their productivity.

Stress management involves using several strategies, techniques, or tools to reduce stress levels and its negative effect on your physical and mental well-being. As a professional delivery driver, there are several techniques used for coping with pressure and stress while driving. Explained below are some of them. 

  • Take deep breaths: When feeling stressed, taking deep breaths can help to calm you down. Diaphragmatic breathing is a powerful technique for calming the mind and body. Performing it 5 – 10 times in a row can help to induce calmness
  • Listening to music: Listening to music plays a huge role in your mood. So, when stuck in traffic or on the road for a long time, rather than getting stressed, listening to your favorite music can help reduce your blood pressure and make your trip more fun. 
  •  Adjust your position: If you find yourself tightly gripping the steering, clenching your jaw, or even hunching over the wheel, chances are that you’re stressed. Performing simple adjustments can help ease your stress. Try leaning back, reducing your grip, or adjusting your vehicle seat for more comfort. When you’re comfortably seated, there’s less chance of getting stressed. 

While these tips are great for managing stress levels as a driver, it’s also important to be able to recognize and address burnout symptoms. When tired, it’s best to park and then take a quick nap rather than keep driving. 

Manage Time Better With Detrack 

As a delivery driver or logistics business owner, drivers need to know how to manage their time while on the road effectively. It increases productivity, improves customer satisfaction from getting their package in a timely manner, and improves your business’s overall delivery efficiency. 

Using Detrack’s route planning feature, you can easily plan your route to avoid any delay and better manage your time for faster deliveries. Even with your massive schedule consisting of several stops and rest, our route planning feature will provide you with an accurate ETA you can give to your customer to reduce delivery uncertainty. 

Detrack offers logistics company owners a comprehensive and easy-to-use analytics dashboard that can help boost their driver efficiency. Our vehicle tracking feature allows you to improve your driver time management and poor performance. For instance, if a driver is constantly arriving late or has several failed deliveries due to poor time management, you can easily monitor this information and help them with time management tips while on the trip to boost their efficiency. Try Detrack today to get started and experience how our delivery management software can help you manage your time effectively. 

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