To maintain business operations, trucking companies will have to come up with ways to hire and retain drivers. Currently, a shortage of drivers paired with a higher demand for freight volume is leaving some trucking companies in a tough position.
There are a couple of reasons experts believe the trucking industry is experiencing this shortage of drivers. Understanding these reasons can help business owners to address the issues and remedy them.
Low Pay – Organizations like the National Transportation Institute have reported that driver wages have been stagnant over the years, despite minimum wage increases and inflation. According to reports, since 2006 for-hire drivers have seen an increase of 6 percent in wages. However, private fleet drivers have seen a 17 percent raise.
Aging Out – Many truck drivers have retired. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average age for a driver is 55 years old. Considering age, another reason for the lack of available drivers is due to federal laws. They require drivers to be at least 21 years old to obtain an intrastate commercial driving license.
Growing Demand – The transport of products is more in demand as the economy grows. Increased sales volume from retail shops is making it difficult for transportation companies to keep up with the demand.
Work Conditions – Drivers say they do not want to work long, extended hours without breaks. Some report they are no longer comfortable with spending so much time away from home, away from their families.
Tips for Attracting and Hiring Drivers
Now that you understand the reasons for the driver shortage, it’s time to discuss what businesses can do to attract and retain good drivers. Here are some tips to consider when building your team:
Since drivers are weary of taking on jobs that will take them away from home for extended periods, companies can offer flexible scheduling options. This is one change transportation businesses can make that involves allowing drivers to work closer to home or sending them on shorter routes.
Offering new perks to your drivers can help with hiring and retention. It’s a great way to build loyalty among your employees. Consider offering perks such as mental health resources, weight loss programs, and other wellness benefits. This is a good idea because it can keep your drivers healthy so that they can perform their job tasks. It may also make your drivers feel better about themselves and their overall health.
Companies have to utilize the internet to find potential employees. A younger generation of drivers is using the internet every day, which means you have to meet them where they are. Post job openings on sites like LinkedIn and Indeed. Businesses that follow this plan should see an increase in applications.
Regularly maintaining company trucks is an investment in your drivers’ satisfaction and safety. Drivers want to know that their employers care. That’s one way to get them to stay with the company longer. The other benefit is that maintaining the trucks can help prevent accidents on the road.
Allow your workers to participate in upskilling programs. Think about presenting them with training opportunities that will help your drivers advance in their careers. This will help your employees feel as if their company cares, which is a great way to increase retention rates. Keep your workers engaged with their job role.
This is one of the most important ways transportation businesses can make changes in hiring and retention. Companies can give drivers a pay raise or offer regular bonuses. However, some suggest looking into how this can impact a business’s liability insurance or workers’ compensation rates.
Helping You Review Your Business Operations
Overall, companies have to constantly review their operations. This is a way to keep up with outside changes that can impact a business. Managers have to ensure they appeal to potential employees. They also have to make sure their current employees are happy with the company.
RRL Insurance can help you review your company’s operations. Our services include resources for driver training, legal requirements, and other helpful information related to the transportation industry.
Our team at RRL Insurance will guide you through which of our insurance options will offer your business the best protection. This is an important aspect of ensuring your business can continue to thrive and grow. Please give us a call so we can begin the process. We look forward to working with you!