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Bus Driver Quality Monitoring

The new government Road Safety Strategy has expanded the role of the Driving Standards Agency (DSA) to include assessing the standards of driving of professional drivers and assisting their employers to achieve high safety standards.

The contract
Typical comments received

The Driver Quality Monitoring service (DQM) provides an objective and informed perspective of a bus and coach driver’s ability. The objectives of DQM are to:

• improve and increase the general awareness of road safety
• reduce passenger, pedestrian and road accidents
• contribute to an overall reduction in insurance claims and premiums
• address public concerns about driving standards identified through correspondence, accident and other surveys
• stimulate driver awareness of driving and road safety issues and the effect these have on customer service
• identify and specify the driver training needs of organisations and individuals


Assessments focus on specific aspects of passenger consideration, customer service, driving ability and a range of other criteria. Most assessments are carried out during normal daytime working hours and at other times by agreement.

Features such as vehicle type, suitability to route and the nature of the roads are taken into account. Finally an overall assessment of each journey is made providing detailed comments and recommendations.

Qualified and experienced DSA examiners conduct all assessments. Travelling anonymously, these assessors make an objective assessment according to a set of real world criteria. Between 10 and 12 assessments are conducted each day and the data is fed back to a central database. Quality and standards are maintained by regular checks and continuous training of all assessors.

The contract
A contract with a fixed number of assessments is agreed at the outset. As a guide it is realistic to assume that one assessment per driver employed is carried out in the first year. However the number and type of assessments will depend entirely upon the objectives of the client. The data is maintained by DSA in a central DQM database and complete confidentiality is assured throughout. An appropriate report is delivered at the regular reviews.

Benefits include:

• better company image
• reduction in insurance costs
• improved customer service

The service positively enhances the quality and self esteem of drivers when used as part of an appropriate motivation scheme.

Typical comments received

’...having the assessments carried out by an independent assessor, who is highly qualified to undertake that task allows us to have a balanced view of the standard of our drivers...’

Stagecoach Devon

’...we consider DQM to be an integral part of our quality control management and positive steps towards improving the service we provide to our customers.’

MTL London

’...provides tangible evidence of the high level of service we provide to our customers...’

Plymouth City Bus

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