Training to help drivers enhance career skills

Drivers with road, safety etiquettes given certificates

Vinod has been working as a chauffeur since last eight years, but, neither did he take his profession seriously, nor considered enhancing his skills to do well in his career. But, on Sunday, he was very hopeful while collecting his certificate which said he is a “certified” driver.

Similarly, 27-year-old Bharatbhushan Gaur, working as a driver since last seven years says he learnt about road and safety etiquettes in the past one month and his employer also felt the difference in his driving as “one of the most important lessons given to me was how to keep cool and prevent encounters which may lead to incidents of road rage”.

Vinod and Gaur were among a batch of 107 untrained drivers who went through one-month free-of-cost training which taught and assessed them on four learning pillars – rules and regulations, safety (includes handling exigencies, handling kids, etc) of the passenger, car care and self-development (training on investment and banking and changing behavioral patterns).

These certified drivers will soon be put on a “matchmaking” portal for those who want to seek their services.

The initiative was taken by Icare Life, a for-profit social enterprise, which works towards providing training on service standards for people involved in informal trade such as chauffeurs.

“My employer says that since I have joined this course, there is a difference in my road etiquette and behavior,” Gaur, who works for a Delhi-based doctor, said.
“Drivers and chauffeurs belong to a highly unstructured trade lacking defined standards. These are poorly-trained people from our informal economy. In one month, we provide a learning platform on clearly defined standards to help them develop their natural career path,” said Akshay Seth, Senior AVP of Icare Learnings.
“The transport ministry while issuing licenses only looks as driving skills and not behavioral pattern of the person. Thus, our main aim is to shape their behaviors,” he said. 

Biggest challenge
According to Seth, the biggest challenge in conducting the exercise was mobilising and convincing the people to attend sessions as they all have been working in the driving profession since many years.

“We reached out to them either at their place of residence or place of work. We had to convince them that this would be beneficial for them and would also lead to higher remuneration in future,” he said.

For catching their attention, the “students” were given tablets and lessons were imparted through videos in seven languages so that they consume the content effectively.

 “I learnt so much about the wear and tear of the car I am driving. I will apply it from now on,” one Sunil said.

Icare will also launch a portal next month which, besides giving the driver’s performance on various parameters in the certification programme, will also list features such as the type of car he can drive, the languages he speaks, etc.

 “This will lead to higher remuneration for the drivers. If people are certified, those seeking their services will be willing to pay more,” Seth said.
 

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