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What does it take to become a Travis Perkins Group Driver of the Year?

22 Nov

Drivers within the Travis Perkins Group are different from the rest of the industry. We encourage our drivers to be skilled navigators, customer service experts and the face of our business, always working to do and be better. As part of this strive for excellence, we run a prestigious ‘Driver of the Year’ competition annually, recognising those colleagues who go above and beyond to achieve excellence in their daily roles.

As drivers are often our team members who have the most contact with customers, yet spend much of their day working alone, they are a critically important part of our business.

Driver of the Year 2018 is Richard Ellson, a CCF driver who has been with the group for eight years. Rich is now a Class 1 HGV Driver who has loved his journey with the company. He spoke to us about what makes a Driver of the Year:

“I ended up at Travis Perkins Group fortuitously”

Rich has been driving for eight years, finding himself looking for new opportunities after being made redundant at a previous company. He says it was luck more than anything that led to him working at Travis Perkins Group, with his wife encouraging him to apply for a role at CCF in 2015 despite Rich not thinking he’d be suitable. Within a couple of years the Group offered to put him through his Class 1 certification to set him on the path to become the driver he is today.

“I’m passionate about what I do and the professionalism of driving”

Rich says driving is one of the things in life he is truly good at, and he is passionate about raising the standards within the industry and improving driver behaviours across the board. He loves the opportunities and challenges driving provides, saying he’s very lucky the work within a relatively small branch with a great team and close-knit group of drivers. The environment is extremely supportive, says Rich, and it’s clear that Travis Perkins wants to invest in its people.

“I was awarded the I Drive Safe title for a number of reasons”

The ‘I Drive Safe’ award is given to the driver who obtains the best driver behaviour scoring in criteria designed to encourage safer, greener and more fuel-efficient driving. With his overall A-grade of driving, zero-accident record, low levels of infringements and high levels of customer service, Rich was proud to achieve this accolade as it is something he is extremely passionate about. Telematics are monitored to analyse driver styles and look at behaviours such as harsh acceleration, braking and cornering, which all impact fuel efficiency and vehicle wear and tear.

Rich is especially proud of his award as he had previously proactively approached Travis Perkins Group’s Head of Fleet with suggestions on how to make the vehicles’ telematics more accurate. This ‘above and beyond’ approach to work and positive attitude makes Rich an extremely valued driver and a great member of the business.

“How we drive has a direct impact on the environment”

Driving safely and efficiently has a significant knock-on effect to the environment, says Rich, and he believes Travis Perkins Group drivers are helping to lead the way in the industry by aiming for more efficient driving standards. As part of this, Travis Perkins has introduced innovative virtual reality training technology that has so far helped to train more than 1,000 drivers, delivering significant environmental benefits. Rich was used as the subject driver in the filming of this and feels passionately about this type of innovation and training, which is enabling the business to facilitate learning in a quicker and more efficient way.

“I’m excited to be part of how we train drivers”

Rich believes there are many different ways drivers can be trained and developed, and it’s critical to make sure drivers feel valued and invested in as it’s a big factor in improving standards as well as driver retention. In the future, he’s looking to develop training networks and systems for drivers within Travis Perkins Group to ensure this part of the business keeps moving in the right direction.

“If you want to become a driver and you put in the hard work, you can do it”

Rich says he’s worked hard to get to where he is at Travis Perkins, and believes that being conscientious, professional and taking pride in your work are all key in achieving more in your career. With the support of the training and development team and his branch, he’s proud of his journey as a driver and is looking forward to the future.

Interested in becoming a driver with the Travis Perkins Group? Find out more about our driving careers and view our latest driver jobs.

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