Ten5, Inc., a MidWest tech firm developing new trucking communications and business intelligence solutions, announces the commercial availability of its industry-first hands-free voice assistant and communications service for trucking operations.

The Ten5 voice platform uses proprietary voice technology and AI to make it easier for drivers to communicate safely with fleet back offices while on the road. Fleet managers can respond more quickly to driver questions and concerns and also prioritize their responses so that the most important items are addressed first. Managers can also broadcast messages to multiple drivers quickly and efficiently or program messages to be released to drivers at specific times for training and coaching purposes.

“We’ve created a platform which simultaneously addresses some of the trucking industry’s most pressing issues, including driver retention and truck safety,” according to Ten5 CEO Drew Ryder. “By giving drivers a safe, low-friction way to communicate, we give them more control of their time and schedule and a greater opportunity to voice concerns. Driver surveys have repeatedly concluded that driver turnover has a lot to do with a breakdown in communication and a lack of respect for the driver’s time.

“We address truck safety in two ways. Firstly, by tackling the growing problem of distracted driving. As more and more text-based apps are added to in-cab screens, the level of distraction has increased. We are countering that with an application which uses voice prompts only and does not take the driver’s eyes off the road.

“The second safety benefit of Ten5 is with voice-based safety coaching. Research studies have shown that unsafe driving behavior decreases over the long term with consistent, repeated safety messaging. We enable this with our Ivex technology which can be programmed to issue strategic safety messaging. We can also receive rapid feedback from drivers on safety matters which makes safety more of a team effort than an edict from management.”

Ryder said the Ten5 platform is valuable to fleets of all sizes and types. “We initially thought it would only be of interest to large truckload carriers with high driver turnover rates and high driver-to-dispatcher ratios. But there is also demand from smaller carriers looking to replace text-based communication systems and improve back office productivity. I think we are learning that the human voice is still a more effective way to communicate than text-based messaging, particularly if you can organize the voice communications in the way we do.”