The first thing you notice when you walk into Toby Boyles office on the expansive Baker Roofing Company’s campus in Raleigh, North Carolina is a white board. On it is written Baker’s 12 Driver’s Credos, scrawled in a stream of consciousness three years ago during a monthly meeting of their Safety Committee.
It is obvious that the value Baker Roofing places on safety is paramount to their success. As one of the nation’s largest commercial and residential roofing contractors, safety stewardship is a key ingredient to the company’s continued growth.
Interestingly, for a company whose technicians can be 40 stories above ground is that Boyles believes that in many ways, having their trucks and vehicles on the road presents a daily safety challenge that exceeds that of putting their technicians on roofs.
Boyle, who has worked with Baker Roofing for 12 years, now serves as Vice President and manages their fleet, facilities, warehouse, and company infrastructure. “We’re a 116-year-old company that adopts new technology swiftly. The strategic deployment of telematic solutions serves our safety-first initiatives and has also adds to our bottom line by reducing costs, securing company assets, and increasing employee satisfaction and engagement.”
“Implementing safety solutions into our company is an investment, not a cost.”
- Toby Boyles, Baker Roofing
Abiding by the mantra “if it’s not measured, it’s not real” scenario, Boyle partnered with mobile workforce solutions company BlueArrow Telematics 10 years ago. “They send me a detailed report at no charge that addresses the metrics we want to measure,” said Boyle. “Using the right tools and telematics, I can KNOW, not GUESS what’s working,” says Boyles.
“Baker needs clear, concise data that every employee with the company can understand,” says BlueArrow Telematics CEO Stuart Lamm. “They go well beyond what is typical for most companies.”
“All these technologies work together to assist us to meet our safety initiatives and produce positive results for the entire company,” explains Boyles.
Lamm finds Baker’s early adoption of what he terms “gamification” most impressive. Boyles prefers the term Driver Rewards Program.
This is an in-house initiative designed to reward both management and drivers by scoring leading indicators of safety, maintenance, and overall driving performance. BlueArrow set up specific parameters and reporting for each individual driver and their vehicle - GPS data, speeding, harsh braking, seatbelt use, maintenance, etc.
“On a scale of 1 to 5, we saw lots of 3’s and 4’s the first month. Today, everyone’s score averages 4 to 4.5,” said Boyles.
THE REWARD? Gifts, time off, pats on the back, and the driver with the best score gets to drive a brand-new truck.
With over 600 company trucks on the road, Boyles decision four years ago to UPGRADE their fleet rather than complying to the industry standard of “running a vehicle into the ground” doesn’t seem logical but ended up being another sensible strategy initiated by the company.
First, he worked directly with the truck manufacturer (first Ford, now Chevrolet) to standardize the specs on all their work vehicles, ensuring the electronics and telematics package are up to date. Next, he determined the value and savings Baker’s fleet of over 600 trucks could provide if they SOLD each truck when it became five years old or had over 150,000 miles.
Boyles explains, “Every year or two, a new vehicle will get a few more miles per gallon. Add maintenance costs and almost negligible vehicle downtime to our gas savings - we’re saving hundreds of thousands of dollars a year on this alone.”
oyles job is to ensure the resources, trucks and tools used by Baker’s technicians are working as hard as they do. “Using BlueArrow’s Fleet Management solutions, we are doing our part to make the road a safe place for our employees and our community. We use real-time data to improve driver safety, plus improve fuel usage, which benefits our environment.”