June 3, 2009: UPS is implementing new technology that allows management to monitor drivers like never before.
UPS’s new spyware began with an upgrade to the DIAD software that the company calls ODSE (On Demand Services Enhancement). The software allows management to monitor drivers’ routes on a computer screen in the center. Management can call up a snapshot of the entire center or any individual or combination of routes.
The company says that the technology gives the center better information when dispatching a driver for a pickup or sending a driver to help out another driver. But many Teamsters have had management use ODSE to question them about their route, leaving trace, etc.
ODSE provides both more and less information than GPS. The system lets management monitor recommended trace, service levels of packages on the truck, the number of packages and stops delivered, the location of on-call air and one-time pick-ups and more.
But all this information is based on the DIAD, not GPS. Management cannot call up the actual location of a package car, just the location that was last entered on the DIAD.
Spyware on Steroids
All that changes with telematics, a new system that uses computer technology to combine data UPS gathers through GPS, the DIAD board and new sensors that are being mounted on package cars in pilot areas.
Through more than 200 sensors, management can monitor when you drive with your seatbelt off or your bulkhead door open. Telematics tells management how long you stopped at each location, how many packages you processed there, and creates an over-allowed figure for each stop.
The new technology changes the ballgame at UPS. Now, every minute of every day is an OJS ride. Drivers who only follow the methods during a ride-along will need to adjust.
Remember that Article 6 of the contract states that no employees shall be discharged based solely upon information from GPS or any successor system unless he or she engages in dishonesty.
Don’t place your job in jeopardy. Don’t sign for packages or show an attempt where none was made. Don’t scan Next Day Air before you actually make the stop in order to show an on-time delivery. Do take your breaks and properly record them.
Look for a special report on telematics in the next issue of Convoy Dispatch. UPS Teamsters who are living under telematics today will report how management uses the new system to try to increase production and trip up drivers—and how you can protect yourself.