Cofely Besix launches advanced driver training
Dubai, March 5, 2013
UAE-based Cofely Besix Facility Management, a joint-venture established by Cofely Services and the Besix Group, has introduced an advanced training programme for all its drivers.
Each day the company’s 40 drivers transport 330 members of staff to 23 work places around the UAE, covering more than 9000 kilometres in the process. The advanced training will make that process even safer, a company statement said.
The programme is being led by quality, health, safety and environmental manager Andre Mars and Keith Elmer, one of the company’s senior facility managers, and a former heavy and passenger vehicle examiner for the UK’s Department of Transport.
Elmer went on to found his own driving school, before moving to the UAE to work as general manager (Abu Dhabi and Al Ain) for Emirates Taxis.
“A significant portion of road accidents in the UAE can be attributed to commercial vehicles which make up a large part of the day to day traffic on our roads,” said Elmer.
“We believe taking a campaign approach to the issue of road safety gives us the support we need to contribute to the greater efforts by UAE Road Traffic Agencies to make our roads safer. For us a campaign has more presence than a simple memo from the boss, or an awareness raising activity - we wanted to develop an approach that infuses safety throughout our business processes.
“Hence our aim is simple; to create greater awareness amongst our staff, increased morale and improved productivity, increasing staff availability for work, reduced vehicle damage by enhancing the management of our vehicle fleet, and improved the care of our vehicles by drivers,” added Elmer.
As part of the scheme, which was introduced in October 2012 drivers received advanced lessons from a certified instructor and attend informal talks conducted in their native languages.
Drivers are evaluated anonymously by their passengers on an ongoing basis, and nominated by the management for rewards based on their performance.
Ian Harfield, general manager of Cofely Besix Facility Management, said that the programme was introduced to take a proactive approach to safety on the UAE’s roads.
“The better our drivers drive, the safer all our staff will be, which is of paramount importance,” he said.
“It also results in our vehicles lasting longer as the wear and tear will be less, and therefore it will cost our company less in maintaining our fleet of vehicles.
“We treat all our drivers as professionals in their field, and we believe in ongoing education and providing them with the tools to excel and advance in their job, just as we would for any of our other staff members.”
The programme was designed after consultation with three-quarters of the company’s workforce, including drivers and their passengers, to highlight any areas for improvement.
From this road safety lessons and literature were developed, with the entire project completed in-house. The system is constantly revised, and all new drivers will undergo the same additional training.
In addition, refresher courses will be provided every two-three years to ensure high standards, the statement said. – TradeArabia News Service