Frito-Lay North America is the $15 billion convenient foods business unit of PepsiCo. The company has a substantial driver safety program in place and Randy Perry, U.S. National Fleet Safety Manager of PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay Division, is here to provide us some details on the program itself and the wins Frito-Lay is celebrating with its success.
Perry has more than 35 years of experience working for Frito-Lay in a variety of positions with increasing responsibility in the areas of sales, sales operations, traffic, and safety. In his current role as national fleet safety manager, he is responsible for sales and supply chain fleet safety activities and Department of Transportation (DOT) compliance. He is also a certified instructor for Defensive Driving for Professional Truck Drivers, Smith System, and is a Continuous Improvement Master Trainer. If your organization has a safety initiative underway, you can benefit from Perry’s experience as he shares with us how Frito-Lay has tackled this issue.
Field Technologies: Describe the importance of having a safety program in place. What are the overall objectives of Frito-Lay’s safety program?
Perry: Safety is one of our core values. Across PepsiCo, there is an emphasis on driver safety to protect our associates, property, customers, and the general public. Doing our part to reduce injuries and collisions is always our key objective.
Field Technologies: Frito-Lay’s program includes extensive driver training and ongoing skills development. What are some of the specific training and skills development tactics you use?
Perry: We have safety teams located at each of our traffic centers across the U.S. and Canada who oversee driver safety training completion and manage electronic scorecard tracking for our over-the-road drivers. We use a variety of training methods, including online training, in-cab training, and instructor-led training. Training begins at onboarding for new hires and continues throughout our drivers’ careers. We use the Smith System Driver Improvement System as one of our basic planks of the safety program. We also leverage skills maneuvering courses and team collaborations on best practices to create a positive safety culture and help our drivers maintain their skills.
Field Technologies: What technologies are involved in Frito-Lay’s fleet management and fleet safety initiatives? How do these contribute to the success of your program?
Perry: We use a variety of technologies in our fleet management and fleet safety initiatives, including onboard logging, GPS, telematics data, electronic score carding, and tracking of performance. These technologies increase knowledge, awareness, and ongoing safety measurements that ultimately help us work to stay safe on the road.
Field Technologies: With a safety initiative, the idea of continual improvement is important. What advice can you provide for keeping a focus on continual improvement?
Perry: Keep safety programs relevant, timely, and deliver them in methods that are easily understandable. Keep the methods simple, stay diligent, and keep them ongoing. Most importantly, make sure safety is always a top concern.
Field Technologies: Frito-Lay has a “Million Milers” recognition program, and just recognized 89 employees that hit anywhere from one to four million miles of driving accident free. How do you recognize these employees and others as they make their way to this goal? How important do you feel recognition is in a driver safety program?
Perry: Recognition is very important, especially with an achievement as big as becoming a Million Miler. Every year, the Million Milers, along with their families, are recognized by Frito-Lay’s supply chain leadership at an annual gala. We also encourage drivers on the road to becoming a Million Miler in order to keep them engaged and excited about the program. For example, we have awards for driving 250,000, 500,000, and 750,000 accident-free miles.
Field Technologies: What advice can you provide a company just embarking on a driver safety initiative to help them be successful?
Perry: Involve your drivers and create a culture around safety. Ask for feedback from your drivers on safety programs, be consistent, maintain good numbers, keep the initiative simple and easily understandable, and keep people aware of their results and the company results.