Staying on top of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations can be hard--especially when changes occur, like the recent mandate requiring the use of Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs). 

“Understanding the many nuances of the ELD mandate will require significant training and change management across the industry,” says Scott Perry, Ryder’s chief technology and procurement officer. And since the technology focuses on capturing all of the many uses of the vehicle, Perry notes, “this training will have to extend to service and maintenance personnel as well.”  

Without the right training and infrastructure, mistakes can be made that result in costly fines or worse, and the FMCSA is justifiably strict when it comes to compliance. The agency relies on a quantified monitoring system, with “zero points awarded for good intentions,” says Perry. Rather, he says, the CSA score “is all about holding carriers and drivers responsible for out-of-service and safety-related violations.”

“The pace of activity in transport regulation has made proactive planning a must,” says Perry. To thrive in this regulatory and technology-driven environment, he suggests that businesses must continue to “pioneer new innovation in the name of sustainability--as opposed to sitting still until new mandates are pushed upon the industry.” Hiring a dedicated compliance officer or team is one possible solution, but adds another cost to the already expensive task of managing your own fleet--and can become an obstacle to growth, as scaling compliance efforts to match a growing fleet is no small feat.

Where does that leave small and midsize businesses that just don’t have the expertise and the budget? Fortunately, they don’t have to go it alone.

Compliance Expertise, at Your Fingertips

Partnering with Ryder for fleet management alleviates the compliance burden with an enormous network of experts, resources, and support. According to Perry, “customers are supported by compliance specialists who can help upgrade the accuracy and effectiveness of log auditing, drug and alcohol testing, and driver qualification processes on the client’s behalf.” This dedicated Driver Qualification File Management Service includes:

  • A dedicated account manager
  • Online compliance tools and management reporting
  • A detailed audit of your current FMCSA-required documents
  • Electronic imaging of driver files
  • Early notification of expiring documents
  • Daily notification of compliance deficiencies
  • Detailed compliance reporting

Since Ryder has automated many of its processes, it’s also easy for business owners to receive advance electronic notification of expiring documents, stay up to date on compliance trends and regulations, and file compliance reports.

Outsourcing Compliance

In today’s technology-driven environment, it’s much harder for small businesses to compete when it comes to fleet compliance and safety. “As regulations pile up, smaller players are struggling to comply and not lose competitive viability,” says Perry. That’s where tapping into the resources of a fleet-management provider can pay off. “At Ryder, we have relationships with manufacturers,” Perry notes. “We have visibility into the product development process and are already involved in validating proof-of-concept products.” This knowledge and expertise is passed onto the customer, reducing the headache, workload, and costs associated with compliance, and allowing business owners to get back to the mission of running their companies.

We hope you enjoyed this excerpt from our new guide, “Today’s Fleets: Turning Complexity into reliability and growth to meet business demands”.  To download the full guide from Ryder and Inc, click here.