Fleet Management & Forklift Safety Blog

The Value of Conducting Forklift Operator Performance Reviews

Posted by Thelma Marshall on May 7, 2019 4:00:00 AM

If done correctly, annual forklift operator performance reviews can help your business achieve KPI benchmarks and goals. arrows-1262403_640

Performance reviews are especially important in the warehousing industry where employee behavior and performance impact a myriad of safety and business initiatives. The fact is, your warehouse is only as safe and efficient as the employees that keep product moving out the door.

But there is a correct way to conduct operator performance reviews to better provide what motivates employees and facilitates improvement.

Reviews that work

Want reviews that deliver on improved performance? Conduct them annually and be prepared with facts, not just observations.

Here’s why:

  • The purpose of performance reviews is to hold the employees accountable for any areas where performance is less than stellar, as well as offer praise for areas that meet or exceed expectations.
  • Accountability, delivered in a respectful, fact-based conversation, breeds change and greater commitment to improvement.
  • An employee that knows performance is monitored for accountability typically demonstrates better performance.
  • Long-term results from performance reviews are better than quick day-to-day direction, corrections, or praise.
  • Employees should have a voice. Evaluations allow employees to express concerns, issues or challenges, facilitating quality dialogue and mutually agreed upon solutions.

The ideal performance review is fair & unbiased

Individual shortcomings add up, so finding ways to improve employee performance protects the investment made in your workforce. But criticism is not always well received. So, when evaluating each employee’s job performance, be credible and present documented proof regarding any areas of weakness or poor job performance.

Use insight and present facts. You can easily track an operator’s performance and productivity with telematic job tracking and operator monitoring. When you cite facts from their Operator Report Card, it supports your credibility and that the evaluation is not based on any biased perspective.

Also, remember to balance a critique with praise. Use your monitoring software to identify both positive and negative issues. For example:

  1. Optical location provides instant information on forklift speed, location, and operator.

It allows speed limits to be set and monitored for each forklift, so managers can see driver behavior in real time. 

  1. Operator report cards identify safety compliance, skill, and job performance.

This tool allows a manager to see if work was completed with safety in mind and if there were no infractions over a specific period of time. 

  1. Vehicle & warehouse activity provides a correlation between job performance & productivity.

For example, some software measures forklift travel times, speed, load on/off times, idle times, and job tracking.  This identifies the level of individual operator productivity.

Without operator performance evaluations, employees may be uncertain who is gauging their performance and if improvement is needed. Forklift drivers account for 70 to 80 percent of the hourly cost of operating your fleet, so targeting improvements through the review process and goal setting can help your enterprise achieve benchmarks and improve productivity.  

Topics: fleet monitoring, forklift drivers, one-screen access, safety improvements, goals, employee recognition, operator behavior, reward programs, team incentives, operator report card, forklift operators