Recruiting drivers in the trucking industry can present unique difficulties, and we’ve previously covered some helpful tips to improve recruitment. Let’s also take a look at some common mistakes to avoid for your next truck driver hire.
1. Not Following Up in a Timely Fashion
Recruiters can feel the pressure to stay in contact with dozens of prospects at any given time. While targeting a particular segment can help ease the burden, recruiters must follow up with the strong prospects in the right time frame.
If a candidate has expressed interest or even completed an application, keeping them in the pipeline is crucial towards eventually converting them.
If it’s been too many days since drivers hear back from recruiters, they are going to lose interest or perhaps form a poor impression of the company. Worst-case scenario is that a prospect gets picked up by a different company or fleet when they could have been converted. Remain engaged with your leads every few days and make sure they don’t turn into cold leads.
2. Not Differentiating the Application and Interview Process
Drivers apply to dozens of jobs. That means dozens of long and boring job applications, and dozens of similarly canned interview questions. Differentiate your company and culture by making the application process easier and more intuitive for drivers. Making sure job applications are short and mobile-friendly ensures that drivers can complete them while on rest brakes during work.
While all the information can eventually be obtained in a long-form application, make shorter ones at first to get basic information, and then follow up later for more details.
Don’t ask for social security numbers or income information immediately—build up to it in the later stages. Drivers don’t have much time, so just try to get them in the pipeline first, and then fill in the blanks later. During the interviews, inquire about the candidate’s feelings about sensitive issues like real-time monitoring. Invite the driver’s spouse or partner to the interview, and welcome questions about work-life balance and scheduling.
3. Not Personalizing Every Interaction with Prospects
Every candidate is different. They have different work experiences, different goals from the job, and different needs as a driver. If recruiters don’t personalize interactions with specific prospects, they’ll feel left like they’re just a cog in the wheel and the organization won’t care about their particular concerns.
Make sure you familiarize yourself with each candidate and their particular work situation, what they want out of driving, and which benefits and values are important to them.
Ideally you’ll be extremely familiar with the details of the job they could be placed in—in terms of compensation, amenities, benefits and work schedule—and you’ll be able to speak to how that job is a perfect match for this particular candidate. Make every interaction driver-centric to each individual driver and they’ll feel like the organization is always thinking about them.
4. Not Following Through the Process to the End
So the candidate has been successfully interviewed, hired, and has signed a contract. That means you’re done here, right? Think again.
Another common mistake is that recruiters drop the ball too soon and don’t nurture the driver through the final stages.
Most concerningly, many leads are never scheduled to attend an orientation session to properly usher them into the new role. Until the driver is on the road and has an established relationship with supervisors, the recruiter remains their first point of contact they can trust in the organization. Make sure you steward the candidate through orientation, onboarding, and eventual status to active driver.
Overall, avoid these four mistakes for your next truck driver hire, and you’ll go a long way toward retaining them in the company for longer.