Mental Health Issues Affecting Long Distance Drivers: What Logistics Companies Must Do

The logistics sector plays a vital part in the economy, especially in 2021 with recent supply crisis issues due to driver shortages.

While the perception of life as a long-distance transporter may seem like an excellent opportunity to avoid bustling office workplaces and work on your own, there are stress-inducing factors to consider, such as traffic, roadworks and diversions. 

It can also be a lonely road to travel, which some may appreciate if affected by the ongoing pandemic, as lockdown restrictions meant socialising was reinvented through digital means.

While these changes were embraced by some through group family video calls and quizzes with friends, for others, this contributed to social isolation and, in turn, saw loneliness and mental health-related issues increase to a great extent.

When it comes to mental health, loneliness can be a crucial factor, as time alone can allow for overthinking, especially in job roles where routine can be monotonous.

As such, logistics firms clearly need to support their staff if they want to continue to survive and thrive. Here are some practical tips to help. 

Keep Track Of Drivers

Logistics firms have a legal responsibility to keep track of their drivers, though in most cases this can be done digitally, such as with tachographs.

This is a legal requirement in the UK and other countries for those driving a goods vehicle with a maximum weight of 3.5 tones or a passenger-carrying vehicle.

The tachograph and its software can help businesses by keeping track of how long workers have been driving, in addition to speeds and distance travelled.

This can help firms identify, for example, that a driver hasn’t exceeded daily working hours, which can cause potential risks to health and safety.

If you own a logistics company, consider using a firm that specializes in tachograph analysis, such as FleetGO.

Using this tech can help ensure you follow legal compliance and identify if your company is at risk.

Knowing this information is being taken care of can allow you to manage other responsibilities, including employee wellbeing too. 

Offer Tailored Assistance To Tackle Mental Health Issues

In previous months, the supply crisis within the UK has lessened, allowing product availability to get back on track. However, mental health issues in this economy are still prevalent.

While it is more common for drivers to be on their own for most of their working day, firms still have opportunities to impact how their employees feel; even small changes could have significant impacts.

While communicating regularly with drivers can work well for upholding and boosting morale, this method isn’t always practical for logistics firms.

Encouraging drivers to listen to music, radio or even podcasts, especially on long-distance journeys, can help them stay focused and improve positive mindsets.

Offer them advice on the best podcasts for long-distance drivers or open up a dialogue around the options your team can use to relax on a long journey.

Also, allowing drivers extra time to pull over when safe and catch up with family over a video chat, where permittable, can help boost morale and engagement. 

Different tactics will vary for individual drivers, so having informal conversations with workers, perhaps regularly, can allow for tailored solutions to be implemented that tackle any mental health-related issues or prevent them within this critical sector of the economy.

Using these tips can help you to improve mental wellbeing for your drivers and boost your long-term business success as a result.