COVID-19 Update: Despite court closures in many areas, Sterling is still able to complete criminal checks with minimal disruption thanks to our proprietary end-to-end automation that allows us to access court information. For additional info on how Sterling is handling the COVID-19 situation, please visit our COVID-19 page.

April 9th, 2019 | Alla Schay, General Manager, Industrials, Government & Education.

7 Reasons Your Organization Needs A Motor Vehicle Record (MVR) Monitoring Program

A group of four multi-ethnic workers standing in front of a row of parked semi-trucks at a distribution warehouse.

Companies like yours invest heavily on equipment and transportation with the overarching goal of ensuring the best customer experience. In good faith, you believe pre-screening your drivers and re-screening them annually should suffice. Yet, when a re-check reveals an issue with a driver’s record, the questions that linger at the back of your mind come forward in full force! Do the following questions sound familiar?

  • Was there a way for me to know sooner?
  • How much risk did I inadvertently expose my company?
  • What else might I be missing?
  • Will I continue to be lucky that no serious accidents (or worse) occur?
  • What can I do to quickly change this?

Here are seven reasons why you should consider adopting a continuous workforce monitoring program:

1. Business Sense

In 2015, Sterling was the first background screening provider to announce an arrest monitoring program. Driver risk management has recently become a critical business issue for many organizations, even more so because it affects budgets and profitability. The typically standard yearly motor vehicle record process is necessary to ensure that you are operating compliantly and that drivers are qualified to get behind the wheel. However, by pulling a Motor Vehicle Record (MVR) only once a year, you are leaving a big gap. You may very well have individuals driving for your organization with a serious violation or other items on their record. The implications on your workflows, profitability and brand reputation are manifold.

The tough questions to consider include:

  • What happens when your driver gets a Driving Under the Influence (DUI), Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) or Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI, applicable in NY), soon after you pull the annual report?
  • What if a license is suspended for another offense?
  • What if one of your drivers is operating a vehicle with a suspended license without your knowledge?

In all these instances, you will only discover an anomaly at the next yearly pull, possibly months away. While this issue may be most acute for companies within the transportation industry, you may have employees who drive as a significant part of their daily responsibilities. This can represent real liability along with threats to the bottom line and your company’s hard-earned reputation.

2. Cost to Business

According to a report prepared by the Network of Employers for Traffic Safety (NETS) and the Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), motor vehicle crash injuries on and off the job cost employers more than $47 billion in a year. Crashes were attributed to a variety of driver behavioral issues such as driving under the influence, distracted driving, unrestrained driver and co-passengers, and speeding.

Preventive measures are always best, and safety initiatives are effective when they are not reactive in nature. Protecting employees from accidents can translate into profitable investment of time and resources for a company. While pro-active workforce monitoring may require increased initial investment, avoiding the costs of incident compensation and crisis management allows you to reap rich dividends on a long-term basis.

3. Compliance

DOT regulated carriers are directly responsible for driver actions. As a result, there is the possibility of negligent retention litigation if a driver causes an injury with a company vehicle. Keeping up to date on drivers’ records can assist in identifying high-risk drivers. So while the majority of drivers are not likely to have a violation requiring the pulling of an MVR, even the best drivers can commit a violation, or worse, cause a serious accident, which could result in a lawsuit. An organization’s lack of knowledge on a driver as a potential risk would likely not be a viable defense.

In addition, not knowing what violations are on a driver’s license may be deemed negligent entrustment. In effect, it is the act of entrusting a vehicle to a driver who, based on previous behavior, could use the vehicle to cause harm to others.

Did you know?

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), when a driver has an on-the-job crash that results in injury, the average cost to the driver’s company is over $70,000, without liability costs, which could add on tens of thousands of dollars.

A Safe and Compliant Driver

4. Safety for All

Beyond the cost outlined above, any opportunity to remove a potentially dangerous driver from the road—either permanently or for a certain time period—benefits the entire driving public.

  1. How can you make our roads safer and keep your organization compliant?
  2. With a reliable, compliant and efficient continuous MVR monitoring program.

Before you opt for a continuous MVR monitoring program, consider these questions and how they impact your organization:

  • Is pulling an MVR once a year good enough?
  • Is the cost of continuous monitoring prohibitive?
  • Are there parts of your workforce particularly well suited to this approach?

5. Efficiency and Risk Mitigation

MVR monitoring runs drivers’ records on an ongoing basis. As a result, it becomes much easier to quickly identify driver problems and to correct them. MVR monitoring continuously checks your fleets’ driving records. When a ticket, accident, suspension or revocation is found, you receive a notification and an updated MVR is provided for that driver.

Ideally, a robust program should include monitoring to identify risky drivers in coordination with training and education programs. Even a consistently safe driver could receive a violation. This could escalate into a serious injury or worse and the company could be held liable in this case. MVR monitoring not only can help organizations identify a potential risk but also correct it before it escalates.

6. Quick Decisions, Brand Protection

Workforce Monitoring provides organizations with information to make strategic decisions sooner and more frequently. With swift turnaround time comes the added advantage of flexibility to decide on the appropriate course of action, whether corrective, disciplinary or punitive action, depending on the circumstance.

When it comes to brand reputation management, remaining alert to potential crises remains paramount. Swift, preventive capabilities play a valuable role in protecting a company’s hard-earned brand reputation. With an MVR monitoring service, the management team is empowered to stay one step ahead.

7. Behavioral Impact

Knowing that records are being checked can influence behavior and yield favorable results that help reduce accidents, lower risk and decrease insurance premiums.  A program utilizing workforce monitoring can illustrate that it is more successful in identifying risky drivers.

In conjunction with a solid safety program, you can demonstrate that your fleet of drivers are safe and the operation is run in a compliant manner. The resulting protection of your employees’ lives and lives of other drivers on the road is a considerable benefit on multiple levels.

Sterling – the world’s leader in background and identity services—provides a foundation of trust and safety that spans across industries, professions and borders. Our technology-powered services help organizations create great environments for their workers, partners and customers. Sterling has 20 offices in nine countries and conducts more than 100 million searches annually.

With pre-hire screening only, employee issues may never be discovered; with periodic re-screens, information may surface after it is too late. Workforce monitoring services provided by Sterling go beyond driver workforces, allowing companies to proactively and efficiently mitigate risk that stems from employees’ illegal activity or driving incidents. Thereby rendering it more effective at reducing insider and safety risk. Click here to learn more.

Do you have questions that are specific to your organization’s needs or any other concern? Click here to connect with a dedicated client success manager, ready to create customized solutions that are right for your organization.


This publication is for informational purposes only and nothing contained in it should be construed as legal advice. We expressly disclaim any warranty or responsibility for damages arising out this information. We encourage you to consult with legal counsel regarding your specific needs. We do not undertake any duty to update previously posted materials.