One of the challenges facing recruiters is that many fleets are looking to hire the same drivers you are. You’re in competition for the same small pool of candidates. In general, the quicker you recruit, the more likely you are to catch the top drivers. The slower you are, the more likely it is that rivals will scoop up your preferred candidates. A quick and efficient onboarding process is one of the factors which will help you have the edge over your competitors. Onboarding involves the lead to hire process, which is what you implement once you’ve identified a viable candidate willing to sign with you. An onboarding process which isn’t efficient could be costing you drivers.

Lead velocity

To improve your onboarding process, it’s important to understand a concept called lead velocity. Lead velocity is a way to measure the length of your onboarding. It is a metric that tracks the average number of days it takes to turn a lead into a hire. Lead velocity is different across industries. According to research by the DHI Group, it takes about 25 days to convert a lead into a hire for the transportation industry. This may include employees who aren’t truck drivers, so the number might be a bit skewed. Your own lead velocity might end up being longer than that, depending on your budget and resources as a recruiter. Lead velocity will also vary based on driver type. For example, it’ll take longer to hire an owner-operator than to hire a company driver.

Whatever challenges you face, it’s important that you do everything you can to make sure your lead velocity is as low as possible

Shortening lead velocity

Think about what you are doing as a recruiter that is unnecessarily adding length to the lead velocity. Perhaps you’re taking too long to contact leads? Or waiting on drivers to submit their applications? If you have too many leads and not enough recruiters, it can add to lead velocity. Similarly, if you have too many unqualified leads, you’ll lose time searching for the diamond in the rough.

What you really need is a stronger screening method and matching system to help sort through unqualified leads and an overwhelming lead volume

Another solution is to take phone applications. Drivers are understandably pressed on time and will find it difficult to find time to fill lengthy paper or online applications. Consider going through the application with a driver over the phone and even filling it out for them. This shortens your lead velocity if you’re waiting for the ball on the other person’s court.

Onboarding and orientations

Once your drivers are further along in the recruiting pipeline, there’s still more you can do to ensure onboarding efficiency. Sometimes lead to hire time is affected by a slow orientation process.

Try to schedule orientations often, to allow your hires more options to attend the soonest one

If your closest orientation date is too far away, drivers will be tempted to sign with someone else because they don’t want to wait long to get to work. You can also time your orientations on days of the week that are more convenient for hires. For example, if you notice you sign many drivers on Mondays, then Wednesdays or Thursdays are good days to hold orientation—perhaps both! The very next day is too soon and you must respect that drivers may already have plans. Waiting until the next Monday is probably too late and risks losing that driver to a rival carrier. Offering two orientation dates per week also gives your hires flexibility since they may be unavailable on certain days of the week.

You should also conduct a review of your onboarding process every few months or so. Are there bottlenecks holding the process back? Too many forms to complete or too much time spent on the application? Identify the problem and try to shorten that step. Use metrics to compare lead velocity over different months, different types of jobs, and different locations. Lead velocity is an important component of an efficient onboarding process. Do whatever you can to shorten the lead velocity and you’ll be able to hire more drivers faster.

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truck driver career path

Truckers looking into a new job almost always have a lot of questions about the carriers they’re considering. They want to know what things look like in a month, in a year, in 5 years or even in 20 years. Being able to provide that information to a prospective new employee up-front could give you the edge in getting that driver hired today! So with the driver shortage and the hiring process as it is today, what is the Importance of a truck driver career path for your drivers?

Training to Hire

With all of the talk about the driver shortage, there’s much renewed interest in driving a truck for a living. For those completely new to the industry, the first thing they need to do is get training to get their CDL license.

Whether you offer your own training program, or partner with a local truck driver training school, be sure to let all potential drivers know that you’ve got a job for you once you graduate.

Be clear about what you expect and what they can expect. That can take a lot of stress off a trainee knowing that if they work hard and get through the training program, their next steps are already mapped out.

Driving for Life

Incentivize longevity. This can be through anniversary certificates or awards. Or even financial incentives that pay out after certain milestones are met.  You can also provide opportunities for continuous education to keep skills sharp. And training to ensure that your drivers are always up-to-date with current technology and regulations.

Be overt about the amount of possible driving options you have for your drivers. Different phases of their lives could change their preferences about time at home vs. time away.

Equipment preferences can change. Or even how much money they need to make at various stages in their lived. Knowing that you’ve got them covered at all steps, is an advantage to help you retain drivers. And this helps drivers feel confident in their role as a driver for your company.

Non-Driving Roles

Sometimes drivers have a need to pull in off the road for good. For whatever reason. But when they’re a good employee and not yet ready for retirement, what kind of truck driver career path might be mapped out in those situations. Often times good drivers can become the best instructors. Or even move into a role in the dispatch office or operations management.

Letting a driver know that these options are available to them along the way might make those transitions from the road to the office smoother when the time comes.

Paint the picture early for your drivers that you have a truck driver career path formulated for them at every stage of their lives. And advertise this on your website and other recruitment materials. For those new to the industry, be clear about your training programs and what comes next. Once they’re ready to hit the road on their own, give great options that fit their lifestyle at each phase. If they grow weary on the road, or can no longer drive, communicate other options for them outside of the 18 wheels. Doing this can instill an additional sense of loyalty to you from your drivers and help you to retain the best drivers.

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best-trucking-companies

Truck drivers are constantly bombarded with information by companies about why they are great to work for. They also hear about companies through their reputation with other drivers. Both seasoned drivers and rookies are interested in hearing about the best truck driving companies to work for. The top companies have some of the best salaries and compensation, benefits, and other perks. But more importantly, they also prioritize home time, have a strong company culture, and are known for respecting their drivers.

Ultimately, the best companies are the ones that suit the individual needs of drivers, including that of region, type of runs and hauls. Nevertheless, there are some companies that consistently rank high, regardless of preferences. Here are 6 of the best truck driving companies to work for in 2019, in no particular order.

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Billboard

High turnover and the enduring truck driver shortage make your fleet’s recruitment efforts of supreme importance. Advertising jobs to drivers is one of the first steps in strong recruitment. If drivers don’t see your ads, there is no chance of them applying to your jobs. Driver recruitment advertising is completely different than it was about 10 years ago. As always, advertising means you should meet drivers where they are and speak their language. If you’re not taking advantage of changing trends and best practices, you’re risking losing the best drivers to rival carriers. Here are 6 things wrong with your truck driver advertising you can improve on.

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Employee surveys are becoming a popular and strong way to measure the engagement and satisfaction with the job. Surveys can help get an idea of employee performance and retention. Other surveys will help employers understand their drivers better and get a sense of what is important to them. Read more

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Given the shortage of drivers currently facing the truck industry, there’s a constant need to keep recruiting truck drivers. While hiring, training and retaining drivers over the long-term is crucially important, and presents its own challenges, it all begins with recruitment of the right candidates.

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The amount of organizations across the nation that are striving to attract and retain women truck drivers will only continue to increase. However, in order to achieve this, employers must make a few changes to how they are approaching recruiting women truckers.

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Organizations across the country are rethinking their hiring and retention strategies for truck drivers. They are revamping benefit programs. They are making sure their compensation is competitive in the market. They are putting bonus and incentive programs in place.

But what about taking a closer look at the relationship between dispatchers and drivers? Read more

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For the last several years, employers across the country are trying to reverse the problem and understand why truck drivers leave CDL trucking jobs. The truck driver shortage has caused employers to constantly reevaluate and improve how they attract, hire, and retain truck drivers. An abundance of effort, time, and money is often spent to find and hire a few drivers, so when that driver leaves, the employer wonders if all of that effort was just a waste of time and money.

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Truck driver shortage increases are continuing to cause pain for companies across the United States. Currently, the shortage of truck drivers throughout the country is up to 48,000 and is only expected to continue to increase, estimated to reach 175,000 by 2024.

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