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What do truck drivers look for in jobs? What are the most important traits to them? These are the questions that pester recruiters in the back of their minds. Recruiters know that there is a driver shortage, and that truck drivers are looking for the best jobs they can find. If drivers aren’t happy then, they will quickly move on to finding another job with another fleet. We’ve written previously about the top factors truck drivers want. Here are some of the top traits of the best trucking jobs as drivers see them.

1. Salary and Compensation

Have no doubt about it—drivers are looking to be compensated well. Truck drivers are in high demand, and they know it. The salary and benefits of different jobs depend on a number of factors which may sometimes be out of your control. That being said, make sure you do everything you can to ensure that drivers are being paid well for the type of job they are taking on.

Compensating drivers below the industry average will raise red flags and impact your company’s reputation.

In addition to salary, there are many financial incentives you can consider, such as sign-on bonuses and paid time off. Some companies give their drivers a bonus for every year that they stay with the fleet. Make sure that drivers are receiving a simple pay statement that is easy to understand and has the accurate amount. Drivers don’t want to waste time following up with the payroll department for company errors.

2. Home Time

This is one of the most important traits of the best trucking jobs. The ideal trucking job doesn’t take OTR drivers out on the road for more than a week. If the run is local or regional, even better. While drivers realize that OTR jobs are necessary, they will expect their work schedules to reflect the sacrifice in home time. Ideally, there is a considerable amount of home time of several days between jobs.

Don’t forget, the average driver works 8 days straight before taking a break. Anything the company can do to shorten that schedule, or to add more home time after that schedule, will be something drivers will appreciate.

Most drivers will have families hoping to see them every week. Even truck drivers currently without families will crave downtime after being on the road for that long.

3. Mileage

The number of miles offered on a given job is one of the traits of the best trucking jobs. Some drivers may feel that the shorter the run, the more desirable the job. But, that isn’t always the case. Other drivers enjoy OTR jobs, and would rather have a longer job which pays more. It is completely up to driver preferences.

Most importantly, drivers will be upset if the advertised mileage doesn’t match the real mileage.

Similarly, if the other traits of the job are not what they were advertised to be, drivers will not trust your company. Word about company reputation can spread like wildfire.

4. Equipment

Truck drivers are often frustrated when dealing with shoddy equipment. Drivers routinely warn other drivers to stay away from companies just because of the reputation they have over equipment. A big factor in determining what’s a good truck driving job is the state of their trucks and equipment. Are the truck models recent and well maintained? Or are they falling apart?

Truck drivers don’t want to be held liable for maintenance failures on the company’s end. Nor do they want to have to spend time repairing the truck while they should be on the road getting to the next destination.

While your fleet doesn’t need to have the latest and greatest truck models, you should make sure they are well-maintained. Invest in quality equipment and truck drivers will consider jobs from your company to be some of the best.

5. Respect and Communication

Perhaps the biggest sign of a good job for truck drivers is how well they are treated by the company. Drivers view themselves as working professionals just like in any other industry. They are looking to be treated with respect by the company and by their peers and supervisors. Having respect for drivers means valuing their time and effort they put into the work.

Put most simply, drivers just want the company’s representatives to treat them they way they would like to be treated.

A big component of respect is how well the company communicates with drivers. Having an open line of communication where both parties feel their concerns are heard and understood will go a long way toward earning drivers’ trust. Make sure dispatchers and others are not speaking to drivers rudely or taking them for granted.

In addition to some of the monetary factors, things like respect and strong communication from the company are what make for a good truck driving job. Keep these traits in mind that drivers look for, and soon your company will be known for offering some of the best trucking jobs.

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communication with driversWhether you’re recruiting a new batch of drivers for your company or interacting with those who have been with you for years, communication with drivers is important. Successful communication with employees is crucial for any profession but comes with unique challenges in the trucking industry.

The nature of the work is that drivers will be on the road most of the time and communication rarely takes place in-person. To complicate matters, there is often a difference in culture between managers and drivers. Dispatchers need to communicate effectively with current drivers to make sure orders reach their destinations on time. Recruiters need to communicate well to make the best case for their company and sign new drivers. Keep these handy guidelines in mind for strong communication with drivers.

1. Be Curious and Understanding

The most important part of strong communication with drivers is good listening. This means you actually take time and effort to hear drivers’ concerns and then address them. Good listening isn’t just reactive. Don’t just wait for drivers to come to you with their concerns. Be curious enough to politely inquire about their needs and questions.

If you’re recruiting a new driver, you know which factors they are likely considering, so address them proactively.

If you’re getting feedback from veteran drivers, be curious about their preferences about type of haul, type of run, work schedule etc. Good listening doesn’t just end with curiosity. Once you’ve listened, try to understand things from their perspective.

You can’t walk a mile in their shoes, metaphorically speaking, but you can try to imagine the world from their eyes. Being understanding requires empathy for someone’s situation, which may not match your own. Drivers have stressful jobs and lives, and the more you can empathize with and understand their situation, they better you’ll listen and communicate with them.

2. Know When to Call or Video Conference…

Sometimes, the medium is the message. Choosing the proper communication method can make the difference between having successful communication or being left frustrated. Some issues are too long or complicated to discuss over text or email. Calling drivers’ cell phones is the most popular way to communicate with drivers for a good reason.

Most drivers will carry their phones with them 24-7, so if you need to deliver some quick but important and time-sensitive information, this is the way to go.

You can be brief and to the point, while also delivering the personal touch. Same thing holds for job prospects you’re trying to recruit—you can quickly touch base about some details and leave a strong impression in their minds.

Speaking of the personal touch, consider requesting video conferences for added face-time. It’s tough to get an in-person meeting with drivers or job candidates if they are on the road. Using video-conferencing is the next best thing. It will also preserve important non-verbal cues like eye contact and body language. Video interviews are also becoming a popular alternative to phone interviews. Save this for important and longer conversations that could use the added human touch of face-to-face interaction.

3. ..And Know When to Text or Email Instead

Knowing is half the battle. Sometimes, text or email is a better platform for communication. You don’t want to send a lengthy message over text. It’s best for short and sweet messages which are time-sensitive. Messages over text won’t require much elaboration or the personal touch to smooth things over.

Texting is a great way to communicate with drivers about quick updates or changes to the plan.

It is usually best when it’s a follow up to an ongoing conversation rather than springing up something unexpected. Don’t text as the first method of contact to job candidates—it’s just too impersonal! Your job prospects will want to feel like you’re making the effort and that they are worth a phone call. On the other hand, you can text to set up a phone call or ask someone to call back to discuss further details. Texting also gets around network coverage issues or background noise, because the message will go through eventually.

Reserve email for the most important and lengthy messages. Usually, email is best for sharing critical documents like job applications, contracts, insurance policies etc. Sometimes email can also be better than a phone call if you want to keep record of what was agreed upon. Human memory is fragile, and two people may remember different things from the same phone call. Having the written documentation available makes things less ambiguous.

4. Treat Drivers with Respect and Build Trust

This one cannot be overstated. None of your communication strategies and methods are going to work if drivers don’t feel that you’re treating you with respect.

It sounds like a no-brainer, yet this is one of the biggest complaints which drivers have—management doesn’t treat them with respect.

If you’re a recruiter making a first impression, this is even more important. Be careful not to speak too hurriedly, or if you’ve been stressed or anxious just before the interaction. Friendly and respectful communication is more engaging and will make a better impression.

Even if you’re interacting with drivers who have been with your fleet for ages, you should always speak to them as if it’s that very first time.

Drivers want to work for companies where they feel valued, respected, and part of the team. You don’t want someone to feel slighted because you implicitly suggested that management is more important than the drivers. Not only is that very far from the truth, but it will have drastic consequences.

Building trust is a consequence of all of these strong communication strategies and methods. Trust requires time and consistency. A relationship with your drivers is just like a relationship with anyone else- you build more trust if you keep interactions positive over a long period of time. Always being respectful, curious, and understanding, will lead to both parties developing trust and loyalty to each other. Loyal workers are less likely to be subject to turnover and more likely to refer other strong candidates to your company.

Don’t lose your companies strongest marketing asset! Treat drivers with respect and build trust over the years through good communication with drivers, and the payoffs will be enormous.

ultimate guide to retaining truck drivers

Ultimate Guide to Retaining Truck Drivers

You work so hard to recruit the best truck drivers for your fleet. The trick is retaining them. This guide is packed with tips for retaining your fleet.

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cdl truck drivers

Given the continual driver shortage, truck drivers have many options in deciding which companies and fleets to work for. Recruiters need to constantly differentiate themselves from other firms when interacting with job prospects. Recruiters are constantly guessing about how much drivers will care about different factors when weighing job options. Data from Drive My Way’s database revealed some interesting factors which CDL truck drivers care about when looking for a CDL trucking job.

Drive My Way’s unique service matches drivers with companies based on professional qualifications and lifestyle choices. We asked our drivers which factors are most important to them when they are deciding where to work. We were overwhelmed by the sheer number of responses and slightly surprised by the results. According to our Drive My Way drivers, here are the top seven factors CDL truck drivers consider when deciding where to work.

1. Pay

Okay, this one is not a big surprise, but it’s good to have some hard data behind recruiters’ instincts. Type and amount of pay is the number one reason drivers said they consider when looking for jobs. In fact, over 15,000 Drive My Way drivers cited this as the top reason.

Truckers know a shoddy deal when they see one, so they’ll be skeptical if your company is offering them pay less than the industry average.

In addition to salary, drivers also look for opportunities for raises, bonuses, and overtime rates. If they are driving specialty or unusual hauls which are more dangerous, they will expect those to pay better. Bottom line, if drivers aren’t paid competitively at your company, they’ll shop around for a company where they are.

2. Health Insurance

Salary isn’t the only important factor when it comes to compensation. Drivers care about a full benefits package, including health insurance. Over 12,000 Drive My Way drivers cited this as a factor they consider when applying for a new CDL job.

The costs of health insurance have risen over the last 10 years, and drivers look for the best packages that covers their health needs. Drivers with families especially look to cover as many family members as possible. Many families will need special coverage for very particular health needs, and if their employers only offer very basic packages they will look elsewhere for a better deal. Try to balance out factors like the deductibles, co-pays, and co-insurance costs and have a portfolio of different insurance options for drivers to choose from.

3. Retirement Plans

When deciding where to work, CDL truck drivers consider retirement options. The average truck driver age is 49. Many drivers are only about two decades away from retirement, so if they haven’t started saving yet they will want to now. Even younger drivers are likely to be proactive and start thinking about retirement sooner rather than later. Overall, nearly 12,000 Drive My Way drivers cited retirement plans as a top factor they consider in a new CDL job.

Many employers offer retirement plans but don’t automatically enroll their staff into a default plan. The result is that drivers and other staff are overwhelmed with having to make those decisions and put it off indefinitely. Make the process easier for your drivers by having an automatic opt-in policy. Then, they have the choice to opt-out or choose a different plan. Saving for retirement is hard, but drivers know the importance. Let your job prospects know you can make the process easier for them, and they’ll remember your company as one that cares.

4. Type of Run/Range

Truck driving jobs have a great deal of variety. One of the most critical attributes that make them different is the type of run and range that exists. Not all drivers want jobs that take them coast-to-coast across the country. Over 11,000 drivers named the type of run as an essential factor when deciding where to work.

Some drivers will prefer over-the-road (OTR) work. However, since OTR drivers spend less time at home and live out of their truck, they expect to be compensated better. Other drivers prefer local runs or regional runs. Make sure you get to know your driver candidate’s preferences in what types of runs and range they’d like to cover.

5. Type of Schedule and Paid Time-Off

Home time is one of the most important factors drivers consider when looking for work. Over 11,000 Drive My Way drivers cited both of these—type of schedule and PTO —as top job factors they consider when applying to a new CDL trucking job.

The average driver works 70 hours a week and goes 8 days before taking a day off. That’s a rough schedule for anyone, but especially for drivers who may have families and children. Truck drivers know that the job entails sacrificing home time, but they hope the sacrifices aren’t unbearable. Drivers won’t hesitate to pursue another job if that schedule and PTO package suits their needs better.

6. Training and Development

Truck drivers may have some experience behind the wheel already, but it won’t compare to getting some actual training. Nearly 8,000 Drive My Way drivers cited training and development as a top factor they consider when looking for a new CDL job.

Any company training or orientation that your company provides will make them feel comfortable in the position and foster a sense of belonging with the company. Research shows that employees who feel they’ve been trained and groomed by the company will feel a greater sense of loyalty to that company. More and more drivers are now interested in professional development opportunities. Making training and development a core part of HR operations is something recruiters can do to make a strong case for drivers to work there and remain there for many years.

7. Type of Haul

Over 4,000 Drive My Way drivers expressed that the type of haul is an important factor for them in choosing a CDL jobs. If you aren’t taking into account driver preferences and specializations in hauls, you’re under-utilizing them! Some types of hauls will require special CDL endorsements or special permits, so make sure to equip your drivers with those. If they are already certified, it makes a placement choice all the more easier. Figuring out which hauls should be covered by which drivers can be a tricky business given other constraints, but make sure you ask your drivers about their skill and interest level in them.

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Just like any other employees, truck drivers consider a variety of factors when deciding which company to work for. Some factors are obvious, such as compensation and benefits. Some other factors may surprise you. As a recruiter, you may think that you’ve all but sealed the deal on a new candidate but then they end up declining the job. Drivers may not be open with you about why they declined the job, but it is useful for recruiters to have this information.

Drive My Way’s unique service matches drivers with companies based on professional qualifications and lifestyle choices. Sometimes our drivers turn down these offers by employers. We’ve asked our drivers why they turn down the jobs, and the results may be eye-opening. According to our Drive My Way drivers, here are the top seven reasons truck drivers decline jobs.

1. Another Job

The number one reason why drivers decline jobs is because they got scooped up by someone else. They were offered another job by a competitor and they thought the offer was too good to pass up.

As a recruiter, you know this is always a possibility you should try to avoid. Always be in touch with top prospects and know when is a good time to offer the position and sign them on. If you wait too long, you’re more than likely to lose the candidate to a recruiter from another company who was just quicker. In the Drive My Way database, over 3,200 drivers cited this as the reason they decline other jobs.

2. Salary

Okay, this one shouldn’t come as a major shock—drivers care about compensation. Considering the reality of the driver shortage, drivers have considerable bargaining power to be able to look for a better deal elsewhere. In the Drive My Way database, a whopping 1,500 drivers declined jobs because of the compensation.

The average yearly salary for truck drivers is around $41,000. But industry average doesn’t paint the whole picture. Driver pay should be dependent on a number of factors including years of experience, type of haul, and the overall benefit package. Offering packages above the industry average is the best practice, but make sure to take into account other factors when crafting a compensation package.

Bottom line, if drivers aren’t being payed as much as they think they deserve, they will not think twice about declining your job offer and looking elsewhere.

3. Hours, Schedule & Home Time

The third most cited reason truck drivers decline jobs is work schedule and home time. The average driver works 70 hours a week and goes 8 days before taking a day off.

That’s a tough schedule, especially for those with families. Finding time to spend with family can be difficult enough, but is especially rough for OTR truck drivers. In the Drive My Way database, over 1400 candidates cited schedule as a reason they declined job offers.

When recruiting candidates, take care to offer packages that will suit their schedule preferences. Drivers aren’t looking to slack off half the week—they’d just like to keep some time for home time. Get to know their family situations, lifestyle, work habits, and keep these in mind while offering packages. Keeping home-time a consideration not only shows drivers that you care about them as employees but builds a more productive and motivated workforce. Drivers are more likely to be retained long-term if they are happy with their work schedules.

But wait, I thought there were 7 driver decline reasons?

These are just the top three reasons truck drivers decline jobs offered by recruiters. But, this is just the tip of the iceberg. For the complete list of reasons that truck drivers decline jobs, download the complete ebook below.

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recruit millennial truck drivers

The driver shortage is in full force. The average age of truck drivers is nearing closer and closer to retirement age, with more drivers leaving the industry. Meanwhile, competition from the ride-share industry continues. That means that drivers can get lured into working for Lyft or Uber which may offer better pay or benefits. Due to these factors, many recruiters are looking to hire from a younger pool of candidates. As you plan for new hires, be sure to recruit millennial truck drivers.

Employers who recruit millennial truck drivers not only bring talented and enthusiastic new people to the company and industry but potentially sets up loyalty for years to come. But be careful—millennials value different things than the average truck driver. You won’t attract millennials to the industry by practicing business as usual, and you won’t retain them if they don’t feel valued.

Follow these guidelines to bring more millennial drivers into your fleet and keep them there longer.

1. Advertise to Millennials on Social Media

You should be using the latest digital marketing tools to advertise to everyone, but this is especially true for millennials.

This younger generation is always connected on smartphones, and often look toward social media for networking and job searching.

Creating engaging content on all social media channels will attract their attention, in addition to linking to specific job postings. Videos and other digital content will especially catch their eye. Use different channels—Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn—for different purposes or use them in tandem if needed. To reach your new audience, you have to actually meet them where they are.

2. Streamline the Application Process

This is another good practice in general, but particularly useful for a younger candidate pool. Millennials will be more tech-savvy than the current average truck driver.

If your job application process is long and tedious, you may lose many candidates who just don’t want to deal with the mess. You need to streamline the HR process.

First, your job application needs to be mobile-friendly. More likely than not, millennial job candidates will be accessing your job portal through their smartphone. Second, make sure you touch base with prospects ASAP over phone or text, ask what the best way is to stay in touch, and then actually use that method! Nothing can be more annoying than getting calls or emails when one has already voiced that isn’t ideal.

Lastly, make the job interview a little unique and interesting. Instead of outmoded and canned questions, ask about activities that may not be on the resume and get to know the complete individual. What young candidates may lack in work experience, they may make up in volunteer activities, academic studies, or life experiences in general. Consider convenience factors like interviews on the phone or through online video conferencing tools. Aim to be transparent about potentially tough issues like work-life balance, wellness benefits, company culture, and more.

3. Prioritize Work-Life Balance

Don’t assume that millennials are less likely to have an active family life and thus can be over-worked. Making this mistake will be a sure way to have new millennial drivers leave your company in a few months.

Millennials say they value work-life balance more than previous generations have. This is regardless of whether your younger drivers are married or single, or whether they have children or not.

Many millennials are struggling to balance and manage their careers, academics, and personal lives all at once. Being aware of these realities will help recruiters tailor the work schedule and type of run to the driver’s preferences. Making work-life balance a priority in your firm, and then highlighting it in the minds of young driver candidates will help you stand out compared to the competition.

4. Highlight Wellness Initiatives and Benefits

Of course, millennials will care about compensation, it’s just that they care about other things equally or greater. If you want to recruit millennial truck drivers, focus on the big picture. More than just salary, millennials will be curious to hear about your benefits packages.

With the costs of health insurance rising year after year, younger drivers will want to save as much money on benefits, even though they’re more likely to be in good health. Keep in mind that candidates who have just turned 26 will be on their own insurance plan for the first time.

In addition to the basic benefits, recruiters should highlight wellness initiatives and institute a culture of care. Basically, you want to reverse the idea that truck driving is necessarily an unhealthy career that will lead to health problems and a sedentary lifestyle. Initiatives that focus on finding ways to eat right and stay fit will show your candidates that there are ways to maintain good health. Let them know your company values promoting a healthy mind and body for all its employees.

5. Showcase Company Culture

Speaking of the company’s values, you should really highlight these to a millennial audience as a recruiter. Millennials will want careers with greater meaning and purpose than previous generations.

Many young people are willing to take a pay cut or change in work schedule if they find the work personally fulfilling and meaningful.

Your company should already be engaging in initiatives that make the work more meaningful for employees, so highlight those to your millennial candidates. Initiatives like professional development opportunities, mentoring programs, and employee appreciation events will foster a sense of belonging. Encouraging travel, pets, or upgrading fleet amenities shows that the company cares about the employee’s individual needs and values.

Millennials are people too! And while it’s tricky to generalize about such a large and diverse group of individuals, some themes have emerged from the research. Millennials are driven in their career more by passion than by financial needs or obligations. They will stay at otherwise difficult jobs and career paths if they find it fulfilling or meaningful. On the other hand, if millennials don’t feel valued at their jobs, or feel like they are making a difference, they will not hesitate to move on to a different company or industry as quickly as they can. Millennials value flexibility and work-life balance more than previous generations so recruiters need to get creative in offering these in their packages.

These guidelines will help you adapt to the times and recruit the next generation of drivers. If you follow them, chances are that you’ll find a strong pool of talented drivers. If you ignore them, you run the risk of millennial drivers being scooped up by competitors, or even other industries.

ultimate guide to truck driver recruiting

Ultimate Guide to Truck Driver Recruiting

Current ways of recruiting truck drivers just don’t work anymore. That’s because recruiting isn’t a transaction. This ultimate guide helps carriers recruit for retention.

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truck driver stats

“Know your audience” is one of the key mantras of the business world now, regardless of which industry or market one is in. Truck drivers are the lifeblood of the transportation industry. They literally connect the industry’s different players together through the mobile nature of their workers.

Knowing more about the average truck driver and their work and lifestyle can help employers recruit and retain workers. It will also help them connect and empathize with drivers on a personal level and foster a more positive work environment. A positive relationship between management and drivers feels good, but also leads to more productivity, motivation, and loyalty from drivers. Here are 7 truck driver stats every employer needs to know.

1. There are 3.5 million truck drivers in the US.

Even though this is a very large industry and workforce, there is a considerable driver shortage. Out of these, only about 1.6 million are heavy-duty tractor trailer drivers. To complicate matters, driver turnover is significantly high. Treat your drivers well and remember that the labor is not easily replaceable.

Only about 6% of all truck drivers are women (about 200,000), although this number is on the rise.

This remains a largely untapped market for potential drivers and is a contributor to the driver shortage.

 2. The average truck driver age is 49.

Knowing the demographic and social profile of drivers will help you connect with their interests, values, and lifestyle.

The average truck driver is middle-aged and been through plenty of other jobs and work experience. Treat them with respect like mature professionals, not rookies.

The average driver is also most likely married or has been married in the past. They most likely have children. Family time is an important factor that drivers consider when deciding who to work for.

 3. The average driver workweek is 70 hours in an 8-day period.

This should give some idea of how taxing the driver work schedule is. Seventy hours is much higher than the 44-hour workweek of the average American.

Additionally, the average driver works 8 days before taking a day off. This means an average of eight days without seeing family, unless there are special benefits with companies offer.

Providing a more appealing working schedule package will help differentiate your company from the rest of the crowd.

4. The average number of miles logged by a driver in a single year is 100,000 miles.

This is another staggering example of truck driver stats that you need to know. Miles logged paints a picture of how much time a driver spends on the road in just one year. Being behind the wheel for such a long time has implications for driver lifestyle and health.

Investing in cabin amenities for drivers will go a long way in appealing to their needs in the truck itself.

While not everything can be done behind the wheel, employers can make sure drivers are comfortable with the latest amenities such as ergonomic seating and satellite radio.

5. The average yearly earnings by a driver is $41,000.

This isn’t a very significant number for the tremendous amount of labor put in by truck drivers. There are constant pressures on employers to cut operating costs in the different aspects of the business. Too often, the hit is taken on labor itself. By creating efficiencies in other areas of the business, or cutting costs in other ways, employers can attempt to raise the salary offering for drivers.

Offering better compensation for drivers will significantly attract them to your company more than the competition.

Due to the driver shortage, drivers will have no hesitation going to another company for work if they feel like they are not being compensated as well as they deserve.

6. The projected employment growth for tractor-trailer drivers from 2016-2026 is 6%.

The truck driver stats on job outlook over the next 10 years is comparable to most other occupations. However, it remains to be seen if this will cover the increase in the demand for goods transported over the roads.

It is likely that the driver shortage will remain an industry factor for a considerable period of time.

Basically, the growth in drivers may not be higher than the growth in the number of jobs, so make sure you’re doing all you can to attract and retain drivers.

7. The number of nights away from home for the average driver is 240 nights.

That’s almost 2/3 of the year away from home. Considering the age and demographic profile of truck drivers, most of them likely have a family they’d like to spend time with.

Employers can’t change the intrinsic nature of the job, which is that drivers will be on the road and away from home. They can however, offer benefits packages which address the drivers specific home life and schedule needs.

Many companies now offer extended time-off, flexible work schedules, or even offer to have couples travel on the road together. Getting to know your driver’s schedule needs will help you craft a package tailored to their needs and retain them for longer.

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truck driver hire

Recruiting drivers in the trucking industry can present unique difficulties, and we’ve previously covered some helpful tips to improve recruitment. Here are 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 another company or fleet picks up the prospect when you might have converted the driver. 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. Know what they want out of driving and which benefits and values are important to them.

Ideally, closely familiarize yourself with the details of the job. Know the terms of compensation, amenities, benefits and work schedule. Then, 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

You successfully interview, hire, and sign a contract with a strong candidate. 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.

ultimate guide to retaining truck drivers

Ultimate Guide to Retaining Truck Drivers

You work so hard to recruit the best truck drivers for your fleet. The trick is retaining them. This guide is packed with tips for retaining your fleet.

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why truck drivers leave

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. When that driver leaves, the employer wonders if all of that effort was just a waste of time and money. Here’s a list of 3 reasons that truck drivers leave CDL trucking jobs.

1. Pay and Benefits

In the competitive job market, pay and benefits are becoming increasingly important for truck drivers. Companies are finding that they need to go above and beyond from a compensation and benefits perspective, as average simply isn’t cutting it anymore.

In addition to offering higher pay and better benefits, many companies have also tried adding a large sign-on bonus to the offer to attract truck drivers.

However, some of those companies have found that offering a large sign-on bonus might attract truck drivers up front, but then lead to low driver retention down the line.

This is due to the mentality of some truckers staying long enough to collect the bonus, then transitioning to the next company offering the same large check.

We asked our driver community if a good salary or a large sign-on bonus is more important to them when searching for a new job. The results of our poll are below.

2. Empty Promises

Companies are finding that they can no longer over-promise and under-deliver anything as truckers will quickly leave the company and share the details around the empty promise with their network. Drivers want to work for an organization that respects their opinion, values them as an employee, and knows their name instead of just their truck number.

In this job market, drivers demand transparency and honesty. They are sick and tired of being burned from companies in the past.

Employers who are transparent in nature with pay, benefits, job role, home time, etc. often reap the benefits. They may see more sustainable driver retention than those who exaggerate in a job description to get drivers in the door. In addition, if the truck drivers trust the organization, they won’t be shy to share this approval with their network. This builds an organic driver referral program for the organization.

3. Bad Dispatchers

As the saying goes, employees don’t leave the company. Employees leave the people at the company.

If truck drivers find themselves working with a terrible supervisor or dispatcher, it won’t be long until they start looking for a better opportunity.

The dispatcher is the primary representative for the company, and sometimes, a trucker’s only contact. Companies that spend time carefully matching dispatchers and drivers may see increased driver retention. Factor in personality types, leadership styles, etc., and you will oftentimes see better relationships form.

Companies who ask for dispatcher feedback from their drivers will be able to proactively correct or improve situations quickly.

Overall, companies that remember that this is a driver’s market will accel. Focus on putting truckers first and remain transparent with job requirements. Offer competitive pay and benefits to continuously stand out against the competition.

ultimate guide to retaining truck drivers

Ultimate Guide to Retaining Truck Drivers

You work so hard to recruit the best truck drivers for your fleet. The trick is retaining them. This guide is packed with tips for retaining your fleet.

Get the Ebook

truck driver shortage

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. It will likely continue to increase and is estimated to reach 175,000 by 2024.

To deal with this overwhelming truck driver shortage, some companies believe that they simply need to hire more drivers before other companies do. Unfortunately, this is a small band-aid on a much larger issue. Here are two reasons why fixing the truck driver shortage will take much more than just hiring more truck drivers.

1. Drivers and Employers Aren’t on the Same Page

There are not enough drivers to go around. But, there is also not enough time in the day for companies to find qualified drivers for their jobs. Day after day, recruiters face the process of sorting through the weeds to find drivers that meet their requirements. An overwhelming 88% of fleets report that most applicants are simply not a fit for their jobs.

This results in time wasted on both sides. Drivers are frustrated because they can’t find a company that meets their professional qualifications and personal lifestyle preferences. Employers are frustrated that they can’t find drivers that meet their needs.

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To spend less time searching for qualified drivers, employers need to make sure their job descriptions are accurate and optimized for their ideal driver. Exaggerating pay, benefits, or home time only results in retention issues and a damaged company reputation. Consider including driver testimonials, offering a driver referral bonus, or utilizing digital marketing to reach a broader audience. Each of these ideas can help increase the number of potential candidates that match the company’s ideal driver target market.

2. Employers are Focusing on Hiring, Not Retaining

Some employers have figured out how to attract qualified drivers for their jobs, but retaining them is another story. In this market, employers who offer great benefit packages, competitive pay structures, and performance incentives see a better long-term retention rate for drivers than companies who are just average.

However, aside from the pay and benefits, drivers also want to work for companies who treat them with respect, offer challenging and meaningful work, value their efforts, and find a way to get them home with their families more.

In other words, retaining qualified drivers in this market requires companies to consistently and creatively implement ideas to make sure their drivers are happy and engaged with their work.

ultimate guide to retaining truck drivers

Ultimate Guide to Retaining Truck Drivers

You work so hard to recruit the best truck drivers for your fleet. The trick is retaining them. This guide is packed with tips for retaining your fleet.

Get the Ebook

retain truck drivers

It is no surprise that America has been struggling with a truck driver shortage over the past few years. Now more than ever, the ability to retain truck drivers is key. Companies need to reevaluate their recruiting and retention strategies for finding and keeping qualified drivers.

Some companies have tried offering a large sign-on bonus for drivers. Too many are then faced with turnover once the bonus is collected. Other companies have promised drivers home time and great pay, but fall short of delivering these perks.

In order to start attracting, hiring, and retaining qualified truck drivers in this competitive market, employers should apply these tips to their driver recruiting strategy to give themselves a competitive advantage.

1. Value Drivers by Being Honest and Respectful

The last thing a driver wants is a company that over-promises and under-delivers. Before posting a job, companies should take the time to reevaluate the perks of the job. Make sure that pay isn’t inflated, home time is realistic, and benefits are factual.

Truck drivers are looking for a job that meets their qualifications, but they are also looking for a job that meets their lifestyle.

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Drive My Way’s research shows that more drivers are requesting to travel with a pet or spouse. Similarly, drivers are looking for home time, and are placing more value on maintaining their health while driving. Companies who are truthful in their job advertisements will attract the best candidates. Look for drivers who not only meet the qualifications, but are also happy with the lifestyle that the job offers.

When a company promises a driver these perks but then changes the rules a few months into the job, the driver loses interest in keeping that job and also loses respect for the company.

After a driver loses respect for a company, that driver will let his or her entire network of drivers know exactly what happened. That will only increase the difficulty in filling future jobs.

2. Ask Drivers for Their Feedback Before They Post It Themselves

Sometimes it takes a company to post a job advertisement on Facebook to find out from their current drivers that something is unsatisfactory. Maybe their pay is too low, their benefits aren’t desirable, or the company over-promises and under-delivers. Drivers want supervisors to hear their opinions. They are willing to share feedback—the problem is, most companies never ask. Companies that retain truck drivers value input from all divisions of the fleet.

Instead of waiting to receive this feedback on a public social media platform, companies should ask their drivers for feedback directly through an engagement survey, an in-person conversation, or a even a quick poll.

This gives the company an accurate pulse on their drivers’ happiness and satisfaction with their jobs. It is also a great retention method because it proves that the company cares.

After collecting the feedback from drivers, companies should have a plan in place. It’s important to quickly address the feedback and make improvements. Nothing is worse than providing feedback to a company and never seeing anything come from the survey.

3. Offer Referral Bonuses and Performance Incentives

Drivers are looking for more than just a lofty sign-on bonus. To retain truck drivers, offer opportunities to be involved with a community. Acknowledge drivers for their accomplishments (no matter the size), and give areas for growth. Drivers with these opportunities, they are more willing to refer a friend to a job opening at their company. They will also be more engaged with their work.

Instead of constantly investing in replacing drivers, companies should implement referral bonus programs or performance incentives to retain their current, already-qualified drivers.

However, don’t let your referral bonus or performance incentive program fall into the “large sign-on bonus trap.” Focus on incentives that are linked to retention instead of incentivizing quick turnover.

When implementing a referral bonus program, give the money out after the referred driver is with the company for a specific time. Doing so protects companies from granting it immediately after a new driver starts, but having the driver quickly leave. In addition, performance incentives should reward drivers for maintaining good safety measures, fuel efficiency, and time management skills over an extended period of time. These not only help drivers stay focused on the company’s goals, but also reward them for living out the mission.

ultimate guide to retaining truck drivers

Ultimate Guide to Retaining Truck Drivers

You work so hard to recruit the best truck drivers for your fleet. The trick is retaining them. This guide is packed with tips for retaining your fleet.

Get the Ebook