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millennial truck driverCarriers that recruit millennial truck drivers not only bring talented and enthusiastic new people to the company, but potentially set 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. Here are 5 tips to recruit millennial truck drivers to your fleet.  

1. Advertise to Millennials on Social Media

You should be using social media to advertise to all drivers, but especially millennials. This younger generation is always connected on smartphones, and often look to social media for networking and job searching. 

There are a lot of different channels your carrier can use, but if you’re completely new to using social media, it’s best not to spread yourself too thin by trying to get on platforms that require a lot of difficult video content like Snapchat and TikTok. For reaching millennial drivers, Facebook and Instagram should be your bread and butter.  
As a recruiter, it’s your number one priority to bring in qualified drivers to your organization who are a good fit. That means that sharing your open job postings through social media is a great idea. But when recruiting millennial drivers, it may take more than that.  

These young drivers want to work somewhere they feel valued and that has a good company culture. Posting photos of company events, sharing driver testimonials, and posting memes are great ways to show your culture to prospective millennial drivers.

2. Streamline the Application Process

If your job application is tedious and difficult to work on a smartphone, you may lose quality candidates who don’t want to deal with the mess. This is why making your application process mobile-friendly is particularly useful for attracting millennial driver candidates who are used to efficient digital processes. 

If you’re not sure if your application process is mobile-friendly, do a quick test run through it yourself. Are you having trouble uploading a resume? Are you being asked to input the same information multiple times? Are the page load times too long? If you notice any of these problems, it might be worth it to set up a meeting with your tech or development team to talk through the issues.  

3. Prioritize Work-Life Balance

Don’t assume that millennials are less likely to have an active family life and thus won’t mind being gone for 3-4 weeks at a time and working 60+ hour weeks. Making this mistake is a sure way to stop millennial drivers from being interested in your carrier when looking for a new job.  

Many millennials struggle to balance their careers, academics, and personal lives all at once. Being aware of these realities can help recruiters tailor the work schedule and type of run to the driver’s preferences. Making work-life balance a priority for your carrier and highlighting it in the minds of millennial driver candidates will help you stand out from the competition. 

4. Highlight Wellness Initiatives and Benefits

Of course, millennial drivers care about base compensation. It’s just that it’s not their only concern. More than just salary, millennials will be curious to hear about your benefits packages as well. 

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

In addition to the basic benefits, recruiters should highlight a carrier’s wellness initiatives as well. Basically, you want to reverse the idea that truck driving is an unhealthy career that will lead to health problems and a sedentary lifestyle. 

5. Showcase Company Culture

tuition reimbursement

While it’s tricky to make generalizations about a group as large and diverse as millennials, some themes have emerged. The biggest being that millennials are driven in their career by passion more than by financial needs or obligations. They will stay at challenging jobs and career paths if they find it fulfilling or meaningful.  

Your company should already be engaging in initiatives that make work more meaningful for drivers, 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 your carrier cares about the employee’s individual needs and values. 

Hiring millennial truck drivers may seem daunting at first, but as long as you follow these tips, you’ll find a strong pool of qualified, millennial drivers in no time.  

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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What's the True Cost of Hiring a Truck Driver?

There are many metrics that a carrier can use to measure its hiring success. Some metrics are more well defined and simple like time to hire, while others are more subjective and harder to wrangle, like driver happiness.  

But no matter what metrics you look at, the dollars spent to hire a candidate is traditionally thought of as the most important. That’s why carriers need to know what these costs are and how to measure them effectively. Let’s take a look at the true cost of hiring a truck driver. 

How to Calculate Your Cost Per Hire

Before you can reduce your CPH, you need to know how to calculate it. Luckily, calculating CPH is pretty simple math.   

You add up your total costs for recruiting new drivers, and then divide that by the number of drivers ultimately hired. This gives you the cost per hire for all your recruiting efforts. (Note that this factors in actual hires, not just leads.) You can use this formula to measure CPH over any time period you’d like, including month, quarter, or year. 

So, What’s the Real Cost of Hiring a Truck Driver?

When nailing down the cost of hiring a driver, the actual math is not the tough part. It’s finding all the factors that go into the cost of hiring. This means all the costs, not just the ones associated with finding driver candidates, like job advertising and using recruiting services.  

Your company’s cost per hire will be unique to the way you recruit and hire drivers. And it might take some time and refinement to ensure you’re calculating it correctly. Here’s a list of the most common costs associated with hiring a truck driver. 

Turnover Is Your Enemy

Now that you understand the calculation for cost per hire, there’s another piece of the hiring puzzle that needs to be factored in as well; your turnover rate. 

It’s widely known that the trucking industry faces very high turnover rates. According to some surveys, over 50% of newly hired drivers will leave their carriers within the first six months. In some cases, turnover can be closer to 90-100% over a year. 

Looking at those stats, it’s easy to see that turnover is a huge problem for many carriers. To avoid high turnover, don’t fall into the trap of hiring drivers to fill an empty rig as quickly as possible.  

If you’re hiring quickly and not taking the time to ensure you’re a good match for each other, it’s not likely it’s going to be a relationship that will last and will raise that hiring cost. If you keep repeating that cycle, it’s going to cost your company exponentially more and you’re still going to have empty seats to fill.  

Every time you hire a new trucker, do it with the intention to retain that driver for a long time. The best way to do this is by really taking the time to get to know your candidates during the interview process so you can see if them coming onboard with your carrier is truly a fit for both sides. Doing this is the number one way to lower driver turnover, and in turn, lower the cost of hiring. 

Measure Consistently for Best Results

Once you’ve found all your costs, the most important thing to do is to measure consistently. This is the only way that you’re going to be able to compare things year-over-year or month-over-month to see if the changes you’re making are truly helping to reduce your true cost of hiring a truck driver.  

Don’t add in costs for one timeframe, then remove those costs the next time you calculate. If you do this, then you’re comparing apples and oranges and won’t have an accurate picture of your recruiting process.  

Once you are tracking consistently, you should see some trends that help inform changes to your overall hiring strategies. Overall, you want this number to be as low as possible to deliver you a quality driver who wants to stay with your company. 

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.

Get the Ebook

Now more than ever, the ability for carriers to retain truck drivers is key. As the labor market continues to tighten, companies need to reevaluate their recruiting and retention strategies for finding and keeping qualified drivers. 

Some carriers have tried offering large sign-on bonuses as a fix-all for recruiting and retaining 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. Don’t Over-Promise and Under-Deliver

The last thing a driver wants is a carrier that over-promises and under-delivers. Before posting a job, carriers should take the time to look at the job description they’re putting out there and if it matches what the job really is. Make sure that pay isn’t inflated, home time is realistic, and benefits are factual. 

As a recruiter, it’s easy to think that you need to cast the widest net possible to get a good driver. But many times, this strategy leaves you with either no driver or a driver who isn’t a good fit and will lead to increased turnover. Carriers who are truthful in their job advertisements will attract the best candidates. 

When a carrier promises a driver certain perks only to change the rules a few months into the job, the driver loses interest in keeping that job and loses respect for the carrier. After that happens, that driver will let their entire network know exactly what happened. That will only increase the difficulty in filling future jobs.  

The better policy is to be truthful in your job description and during your talks with drivers. Even if a driver tells you, “Thank you, but I’m looking for something different”, that outcome is much better than a driver coming on board, finding out they were misled, leaving and spreading the word about their experience.  

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

Sometimes it takes a carrier posting a job advertisement on Facebook for them to find out that their current drivers are unsatisfied. Maybe their pay is too low, their benefits aren’t desirable, or the carrier over-promises and under-delivers.  

Most times, posting their opinions on the internet isn’t a driver’s first choice. They want to have an outlet to tell their supervisors their feelings (anonymously or not), but many carriers don’t offer this. When that’s the case, a disgruntled driver may look to a social media platform or company review site to share their feedback. 

Instead of waiting to receive public and most likely unflattering feedback on a public social media platform, carriers should ask their drivers for feedback directly through engagement surveys, in-person conversations, or even a quick poll. 

This gives the carrier an accurate pulse on their drivers’ happiness and satisfaction, while keeping everything in-house. It’s also a great retention method because it shows drivers that the carrier cares. 

But collecting the feedback is only step one. It’s important to quickly address the feedback and make improvements when needed. Nothing is worse to a driver than when they provide feedback they were asked for and nothing comes from it. If that happens, there’s a good chance they’ll end up going to social media just like they would have in the first place.  

3. Offer Referral Bonuses and Performance Incentives

Instead of constantly investing in lofty sign-on bonuses to attract new drivers, carriers should implement referral bonus programs and performance-based incentives to retain their current, already-qualified drivers. These programs give drivers the opportunity to be acknowledged for their accomplishments and incentive to help grow the fleet.  

When implementing a referral bonus program, it’s a good idea to disperse the money in installments after the referred driver has been with the carrier for a specific period. Give the first chunk immediately, then the next half when the new driver reaches three or six months. Doing so protects the carrier from having a driver quickly leave after the money is given out. 

In addition, performance incentives should be used to 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 carrier’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.

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semi truck shortageIn the trucking industry, we hear a lot about a shortage of truck drivers and how that’s to blame for a lot of the logistics holdups our country is facing. While hiring and retaining truck drivers is definitely an issue that a lot of carriers are facing, there’s another that’s proving to be just as much of an obstacle; a shortage of semi-trucks.  

Why is There a Truck Shortage?

semi-truck shortageIf you’ve tried to buy a personal car, pick-up truck, or SUV in the past two years, you’re probably aware of the microchip shortage that the auto industry is facing. Unfortunately for fleet managers and would-be owner operators, this is an issue for the trucking industry as well.  

The problem is that there’s a shortage of the microchips that go into almost all consumer and commercial vehicles. These microchips are used to control important vehicle functions including everything from air conditioning to lane assist features.  

During the Covid-19 pandemic when lockdowns were initiated, people started driving less and staying in more, and using personal electronics like phones, tablets, and laptops. The factories that create these microchips started pumping out more and more of these personal electronic microchips while slashing the number of automotive microchips they made.  

Fast forward to today and the demand for new vehicles has returned to pre-pandemic levels. Lockdowns are over and the pandemic overall is pretty much in the rearview mirror in the United States.  

Unfortunately, these microchip factories haven’t caught back up with production of automotive microchips. Thanks to a huge number of factors including incentive to produce more profitable microchips for 5G smartphones, energy usage regulations, and strict ZERO Covid policies still being implemented in China, microchip production is still slowed.  

How is the Semi Truck Shortage Affecting the Trucking Industry?

The two main groups being affected by the semi-truck shortage are fleet managers and owner operators. Owner operators eager to either buy their first truck or upgrade to a new one are finding it hard to do so with limited inventory and skyrocketing prices for both new and used trucks. Many dealers across the U.S were sold out of semi-trucks by the end of January this year. 

Some fleet managers and recruiting teams are getting to the point where they can’t expand the way they’d like to because they’re not able to acquire the trucks they need.  

Jason Kent Crowell

Jason Crowell, Director of Recruiting, CCT

Jason Crowell, Director of Recruiting with Drive My Way client, Custom Commodities Transport is one such person affected by the trucking shortage.  

“We were getting very close to having to stop advertising our jobs because of the semi-truck shortage. Luckily, it didn’t come to that. It’s definitely a very interesting time for the salespeople, the operations people, and certainly for the recruiters.” 

What Can Recruiters Do?

The best thing recruiters can do is nurture the relationships they’ve built with driver candidates even if they don’t have the trucks to put them in right now.  

“What we’re having to do is nurture some of those relationships that our recruiters are making a bit longer, because we may not have the truck capacity at the moment to hire them even if they’re a good fit for us.” – Jason Crowell, Director of Recruiting, Custom Commodities Transport

While it’s not the ideal situation, continuing to check in with quality driver candidates by maintaining regular touchpoints will give recruiters a better chance of landing them once their fleet has the capacity to bring them on.  

Will the Truck Shortage End Soon?

Some reports say that microchip production is ramping back up, but not to the levels we saw pre-pandemic. 

There’s some speculation that even when the supply chain for microchips returns to normal, we still won’t be seeing full lots of semis like we did in years past. Why?  

Through this ordeal, auto manufacturers have learned It’s more profitable and efficient to build only what’s needed instead of having huge numbers of trucks shipped out that may sit on the lot for months. 

The best thing for fleet managers and owner operators to do is to assume this is the new normal for the time being and adjust their plans to purchase new semi-trucks accordingly.

There may be a time when microchip production increases and we have a surplus of semi-trucks readily available for purchase, but that unfortunately doesn’t look like any time soon.

Custom Commodities Transport Partners with Drive My Way for Success

Custom Commodities Transport is the nation’s largest transporter of Activated Carbon. See how they worked with Drive My Way to meet their driver needs.

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Trucking recruiter Skills to master

As a trucking recruiter, you’re all too familiar with the challenges of hiring owner operators and company drivers: ghosting, high turnover rates, and an ever-changing recruitment landscape are just some of your daily obstacles.  

Since you are the first face of your company to interact with drivers, it’s critical to be prepared with the skills that will turn your list of driver candidates into hires. Here are the top 5 skills that every trucking recruiter should master. 

1. Be Strategically Proactive

It’s a driver’s market. If you want to be a trucking recruiter who successfully reaches quality drivers, it’s on you to be proactive. That said, being proactive should be a strategic plan and not just aggressive outreach.  

Consider the times and channels that are most likely to be productive for the drivers you seek. Recruiting for local or regional routes? Try calling in the evening to avoid busy loading and unloading schedules.  

Seeking OTR drivers? Make sure there’s a mobile-friendly website for drivers who are looking for jobs while on a driving break. Once you’ve optimized your strategy, continually reach out through multiple channels to engage new leads and reconnect with old leads.

2. Know Your Audience

This might seem obvious, especially to an experienced truck driver recruiter, but it couldn’t be more important. The Commercial Carrier Journal found that the overwhelming majority of surveyed drivers cited inadequate pay as a reason fleets are struggling to find drivers. That’s likely not a surprise. Perhaps more striking is that lack of respect and lack of home time are responses two and three for the same question. 

If you want to increase the number of quality drivers you hire, you need to know their priorities and address their concerns. 

Identify the benefits that are most important to your candidates, and offer those perks whenever possible. Be straightforward about what drivers can expect on the job. Many will find your honesty refreshing and a compelling reason to join your company.

3. Take Advantage of Technology

Gone are the days where a clean, mobile-friendly user interface was a nice, extra touch used by only the most tech-savvy trucking recruiters. According to the 2019 Overdrive Connectivity Report produced by Randall-Reilly, 74% of owner operators use a smartphone to access the internet. Over half of those same drivers use a phone more than any other device to access the internet. 

As for company drivers, 77% use smartphones to access the internet. 65% of company drivers use their smartphones to access the internet more than any other device. With this in mind, don’t just make your recruiting mobile-friendly. Optimize your process with the assumption that most drivers will be recruited first, and possibly exclusively, on a smartphone.

4. Prioritize Your Workload

Coming into a new year or quarter, it is tempting to take on a heavy load, but don’t get caught in the frenzy. Your hours are limited. Take the time to prioritize your leads based on urgency and fit early on to increase your overall productivity. 

Evaluate which candidates are most likely to fit your positions. Are they qualified? Which drivers are really a good match for you? Is your company really a good match for them? Speak with each driver and understand their priorities. Then, be candid if they’re not a good fit.  

Remember, hiring a bad match increases turnover and leaves a bad impression on drivers. Since time is critical, engage your strongest leads first. You’ll be glad you took time to slow down at the beginning so that you can efficiently recruit the drivers best suited for your fleet.

5. Build Relationships, not Just a Sales Funnel

As a trucking recruiter, you may feel like building relationships isn’t the best use of your time, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Even when time is of the essence, you can’t afford not to get to know your potential drivers. 

Taking the time to build relationships and treat drivers like people, not leads, might reveal key information that will improve positional fit. Unsurprisingly, finding a better fit ultimately leads to improved driver retention.  

Most recruiters know that drivers need to have the baseline qualifications for particular jobs, but it goes beyond just having the right certifications and x years of experience. As we know, experienced drivers have the opportunity to choose jobs that meet their lifestyle and goals. Identify what those are and find ways to meet them.  

Drivers who are satisfied with their time at home, model of truck, and who feel they can meet their goals with your company will perform better and stay longer. If you want to increase your carrier’s retention rates, taking the time to build relationships with potential drivers is time you can’t afford not to spend.

Comprehensive CDL Recruitment Solutions

Ready to start recruiting the right drivers? Our solutions experts are happy to answer any questions and show you how Drive My Way uniquely approaches CDL driver recruitment.

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3 Tips for Hiring a Local Truck Driver

As a truck driver recruiter, it’s easy to fall into the mindset that all driver candidates have the same needs and wants. But, just like candidates in any industry, truck drivers are individually unique in what they want out of a job, what motivates them, and how they like to be communicated with.  

While it’s impossible to have a truly unique approach for every driver candidate you’ll encounter, you should be tailoring your recruitment experience based on whether the driver is looking for local work or OTR/Regional work.  

If you’re hiring for local positions, here are three tips to help you fill your fleet with quality drivers.

1. Talk About What Local Drivers Care About

local truck driver

Home Time

While many OTR drivers are drawn to the call of the open road, local truck drivers highly value home time. In fact, it’s one of, if not the biggest reason these drivers prefer to drive local.  

When hiring local drivers, clearly state up front and early in the job description the amount of home time that this position will afford. If you don’t, you run the risk of losing quality drivers, just because it wasn’t obvious enough that your job is for local drivers.  

Pay

Every driver wants to know about pay, local truck drivers included. As a baseline, your carrier should be offering compensation near or above the average for your area. If you’re not sure what that average is, look at some of your competitor’s job postings and go from there.  

Just like home time, share pay information clearly in your job description and in early conversations with prospective drivers. If your company pays hourly, include the average hours that drivers typically work weekly. If they receive overtime pay after 40 hours, share the rate.  

Similarly, if your company pays CPM, share the average miles drivers work per week. Then, drivers can decide whether the job is a good mutual fit before either side invests any more time.

CDL drivers are aware that driving local routes generally means less pay than driving OTR, but they still want to know what they can expect.  

2. Don’t Leave Out the Details

Schedule

Local truck drivers expect to be home every day. That’s the bare minimum. But it’s a good idea to include additional information about their schedule in the job description as well. 

Will they have weekends off? What time does the shift start? How long is the typical workday? Will the days off be consecutive? All these questions should be answered by your job description or during the first point of contact with the driver.  

Route

There can be a lot of variation in job type and responsibilities for a local truck driver. As a result, including more specific information can be a helpful recruiting tool. Will drivers be primarily on highways or surface roads? Will there be frequent stops on a typical route? Is there one dedicated customer or is it always changing? 

Customer Service

Another important thing to discuss with local drivers is the level of customer service. If there is a customer service component to the job, don’t just assume that the driver will be ok with that. While a lot of drivers may be, some chose this profession to avoid customer service, so it could be a deal breaker. 

Have a conversation about it early on in the recruitment process and consider offering specific customer service training to your drivers if you feel it’s necessary.  

Level of Touch

Regardless of the level of touch required for your local truck driver position, include details about it in your job description. Loading and unloading isn’t usually a dealbreaker for local drivers, but be upfront about it just in case it is.

3. Articulate Your Value

Employee Value Proposition

Your value proposition is what sets you apart from other similar companies. In short, why should drivers choose to work for your company over competitors? It is critical that you are able to identify and stick to this value.  

It’s what will help you attract new drivers and prevent losing current ones to competitors. Your value proposition can be anything from an above average pay rate, to weekends off, or a great company culture. It’s whatever makes your carrier different from carrier B, C and D.  

Health Benefits

Many local drivers are very family-oriented, so offering immediate medical insurance might be particularly valuable. Having a full benefits package that includes medical, dental, vision, and prescription is a huge incentive in getting these drivers to come onboard.  

Company Culture

Since local truck drivers see their supervisors and colleagues more regularly, a good work environment and company culture can be particularly strong assets. 

Comprehensive CDL Recruitment Solutions

Ready to start recruiting the right local drivers? Our solutions experts are happy to answer any questions and show you how Drive My Way uniquely approaches CDL driver recruitment.Request a Demo

truck driver interview questions

Good truck driver interview questions do two things. They help you find drivers who are going to be a good fit for your carrier while helping you build a relationship with them at the same time. The best recruiters use a conversational style to learn more about drivers’ experiences and skills as well as their goals for a new job. 

Informative and approachable truck driver interview questions are the foundation of a strong recruitment for retention strategy. Here are 5 tips to help you get to know the drivers you’re interviewing and find one who fits well with your fleet. 

1. Start With the Basics

Chelsee Patton and Truck

Chelsee Patton, Director of Recruiting at RTI

The purpose of an interview is to find a driver who has the skills and qualifications to do a specific job. Inevitably, it is crucial to have a clear picture of their experience, endorsements, and total compensation needs. The challenge is to get that information in an approachable way.  

Drivers should feel like the interview is building a relationship rather than simply an effort to fill another seat with an anonymous face. Strong interviewers learn about drivers’ skills and experience through conversation.  

We spoke with Chelsee Patton, Director of Recruiting at RTI and CDL holder, about effective interviewing as part of recruitment. She shared these thoughts,  

“For carriers trying to improve their interview process, I would tell them to take a look at how they’re talking to drivers at the beginning of the interview. Are you automatically jumping into, “How much experience do you have? How many tickets? How many accidents?” If so, I would recommend conversationally talking through all of that instead of reading questions one after the other off a sheet.”

As you build relationships with drivers, keep a detailed record of their professional profile. Clearly denote the driver’s experience and endorsements. This information helps automatically filter out unqualified applicants. Drivers’ requested total compensation should also be clearly noted. If they express specific demands around home time, base pay, or benefits, make sure to include that information.  

Similarly, if drivers respond negatively to the total compensation you are offering, note that as a possible red flag. Delving into basic information such as skills and endorsements is an opportunity to learn key information while setting a positive tone for future interactions. 

2. Find Out What Drivers Are Looking for

Not all drivers are a good fit for every job, and that’s ok. Time is a precious commodity in the recruiting world, so find out early what drivers are looking for. Some drivers may talk about career plans and advancement opportunities. Understanding each driver’s underlying motivation helps frame the conversation and contextualizes that driver’s priorities. Use that information to focus on the job aspects that are most important.  

In some cases, a driver’s goals may not be compatible with the available position. That’s also valuable knowledge. In these cases, learning that quickly can help you end the conversation and encourage the driver toward other positions to save time.  

If you still want to attract the driver, make sure to be as transparent as possible about the open job. Unfulfilled or misled expectations will only lead to high turnover and a bad company reputation. Instead, put your efforts toward quickly identifying drivers who are a good fit and may stay in the job for many years to come.  

3. Ask Role Specific Questions

ChelseeInPink

Chelsee takes the wheel

Once you have a baseline of information about the driver’s qualifications and future goals, hone in on the specific job. Discuss features of the job that are atypical or have raised concerns from drivers in the past.  

For example, if drivers need mechanical knowledge, ask “What experience do you have fixing mechanical problems with your truck?” Similarly, if the position includes slip seating, ask drivers about their preferences and habits when sharing a cab. All of these truck driver interview questions shift the focus to recruiting for retention.  

4. Use Behavioral Interviewing

If you have a strong driver candidate based on their qualifications, the next step is to use behavioral interviewing to assess their on-the-job competencies.  

These questions look at how a candidate has handled past situations in an attempt to predict how they’d behave in the future. Behavioral interviewing questions look at a candidate’s problem-solving, priority setting, and conflict management abilities. 

To ask effective behavioral interviewing questions, use the STAR technique. Situation, Task, Actions, and Result. To start, ask candidates to describe their past experiences. Then, listen closely and evaluate based on the Situation or Task they encountered, the Actions they took, and the Result of their actions.  

Think about situations that current drivers for your carrier deal with and ask candidates how they would react if faced with them. This will give you a good indication of if they’ll be a good fit for your carrier. 

5. Share the Mic

Truck drivers want to know that their carrier will respect and value their contributions. One way to demonstrate your commitment to drivers from the start is by sharing the mic.  

Allow time for drivers to ask questions during the interview or at the end. Doing so signals to drivers that you care about their input and whether the job is a good fit for them. It’s also another valuable opportunity to understand what they prioritize. If they’re a strong candidate but undecided about the position, that insight may help you win the driver to your team.  

As a recruiter, it’s hard to predict exactly what drivers may ask, but prepare answers for common questions. This will likely include questions about home time, pay, benefits, and equipment among other things. Before you end the conversation, make sure the driver is clear about the job offer. Transparency upfront supports long-term retention.  

Good truck driver interview questions give you the opportunity to get to know potential drivers so you can focus on boosting retention. When drivers and carriers connect transparently over a job that is a mutually good fit, the interview time is well worth the investment. 

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.

Get the Ebook

social mediaLike most everyone, truck drivers are all over social media. It’s where they connect with other drivers, share tips for being on the road, and discuss current happenings. It’s also where they look for jobs and research carriers.  

As a recruiting team, how can you use that to your advantage? You want to make sure that drivers looking at your company come away with a positive impression, but that’s easier said than done. Here are 3 ways to strengthen your trucking company’s social media presence.  

Be on the Right Channels  

The first step is to make sure you’re in the right places to find drivers. While there isn’t much new data on what social media platforms truckers are on the most, you can find a lot of drivers using Instagram, Facebook, and now TikTok. 

The newest social platform, TikTok can be difficult for carriers to get on, as the majority of content is user-generated videos, and creating that on a regular basis takes a lot of resources. Facebook and Instagram on the other hand are easier social channels to manage and post on. You probably already have a Facebook, and maybe an Instagram account, but whether you’re leveraging them for their recruiting value is a different question.  

We were able to talk with April Smith, Driver Recruiter with Drive My Way client, Lansing Building Products. April told us about what Lansing posts on their social channels and how that helps attract drivers. 

April Smith,
Driver Recruiter,
Lansing Building Products

What kind of content does your company post on social media?

“We post company news and events, job postings, associate highlights and achievements, product, and customer accomplishments.”

What social media platforms is your company present on?

“We’re currently active on Indeed, LinkedIn, and Twitter.”

How does the content you post support your company’s recruiting efforts?

“Our social media presence promotes our company culture, engages job seekers, and helps attract top talent.”

Lansing BP’s recent Instagram post, celebrating Mother’s Day

Is there a certain kind of content that does particularly well?

“Photos and videos of our people do very well. A great example of this was our recent Mother’s Day post that shared pics of Lansing Mom’s and their kids.”  

What is the overall goal for your company’s social media presence?

“We want to build brand awareness and boost brand engagement through social media. We want people to have a genuine feel for our people, our culture and what makes Lansing Building Products a great place to work.”

3 Ways to Engage with Truck Drivers Using Social Media 

Driver Testimonials

Maybe the most powerful tool when it comes to social media recruiting, driver testimonials are great at showing potential candidates why your company is a great place to work. What makes this content so powerful is that it comes from a source that drivers trust.  

Many drivers have been misled in the past by recruiters. So, when a recruiter tells them all the great things about driving for a company, there’s a good (and reasonable) chance that they’ll be skeptical. They’ll be more receptive of that same message if it comes from a fellow driver. 

There’s a few different ways to driver testimonials. The most common is to ask drivers to send in a short video about why they enjoy working for your carrier. The other is to film drivers on site. Both are great, but asking drivers to send in a short video is usually more cost-effective, as you won’t have to pay for or rent video equipment. These videos also have an amateur feel that comes across as more authentic.

Mission Statement Video

One minute to show what your company is, what they do, and why they do it. That’s what a mission statement video is. These videos are used to give visitors to your social media pages (including prospective driver candidates) a bird’s eye view of your company. 

Mission statement videos should be short and to the point. B-roll footage of company trucks, drivers, and your building over a narration of your mission statement is a great way to go. If you’re unable to do video, you can do the same thing with still images. 

Consider pinning this video to the top of your Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn page. Many visitors to your page may want to get a quick overview of your business, and this is a great way to do it. 

Company Culture Posts

It’s always better to show than it is to tell. Sure, you can tell a driver that your carrier has a great company culture, but that probably won’t stick in their head. Using social media to show your company culture is a great way to send a message that will resonate with them throughout the recruiting process. 

Do you have any after work events? Parties during workdays? Do you celebrate work anniversaries for drivers? Documenting these events on social media is a great way to get engagement and showcase to drivers what it’s like to work for your company.  

The best thing about social media is that there’s very little (if any) cost to it. You can experiment with different post types to see what gets the best engagement with drivers and go from there.

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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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American Central Transport

Josh Mecca is the Director of Recruiting with Drive My Way client, American Central Transport. Josh has been in the trucking industry for over 16 years and was recently invited to the White House to hear about the current administration’s Trucking Action Plan. We had the chance to talk with Josh about his trip to the White House, why ACT is recognized as a Best Fleet to Drive For, his advice for recruiters, and more.

What did your experience in the industry look like before coming to American Central Transport?

I started my journey at a trucking company in the southeast. From there, I moved to Nashville, TN and worked at a transportation management company. That’s where I learned the ins and outs of the industry, including long haul, regional, day cab, and virtually every mode of truckload transportation. I really started to understand the trucking industry from a logistics standpoint during my time there.

Wanting to get back to working directly with assets, I moved to a Midwest carrier for a couple of years, specifically working with Owner Operators. Then just over six years ago, I moved back home to Kansas City to take this role with American Central Transport as their Director of Recruiting.

ACT has been named a Best Fleet to Drive For for 5 consecutive years now. How have you been able to do that?

Honestly, it’s become something that’s ingrained in our culture. Every time we think about a new program, whether that’s changes to compensation, home time, benefits, or anything that impacts our drivers on a daily basis, we ask ourselves “How does this fit into being a best fleet? Does it make the lives of our drivers better?” 

At the end of each year, we always do an internal debrief based on feedback from the Best Fleets to Drive For program.  We compare what we did well, what we can improve on, and what we’re missing. We do this because we want American Central Transport to be at the forefront of providing the best work-life balance that drivers deserve.

Historically, our industry hasn’t really taken those wants from drivers into consideration, but being part of the Best Fleets really challenges us at our core to do everything we can to make not only our company a better place for drivers, but to attract and retain more talent to the industry as a whole.  

The market for truck drivers has been extremely competitive for a while now. Do you feel this is because of a true shortage of drivers, or something else?

American Central TransportI’ve always been very skeptical of the notion that there’s a literal shortage of drivers who want to get into trucking. The reason I’m skeptical is because of the number of leads, applications, and people we see out there looking for jobs.

Drivers are realizing that, for a lack of a better term, they’re in the driver’s seat right now. They control where they go and who will employ them for their services, and rightfully so. They’ve got a hard job and they sacrifice a lot to do it. We as carriers really need to understand that if our job isn’t attractive for drivers, we’re going to fall short.

We’ve recently started a driver finishing program with two CDL schools here in Kansas City. We were noticing that a lot of times in our industry, a driver would finish their CDL training and immediately be thrown to the wolves before they had a real chance to get their feet under them. This led to a lot of careers in trucking being thrown away before they began because these new drivers would have such bad experiences.

Companies didn’t want to invest in the training that these new drivers needed beyond the bare minimum, so we decided to take a different approach. Once they’ve finished CDL school, we help our new drivers by giving them the support and knowledge they need from an experienced trainer while increasing their pay every 90 days for that first year they’re with us.

Recently, you were invited to the White House. Tell us about the experience and what you took away from it.

Josh at the White House

It was a great event to be a part of. It focused on this administration’s Trucking Action Plan to help our industry become more attractive. The plan focuses on a few pillars, one of those being more trucking apprenticeships to attract new drivers, especially women and minorities into the industry. 

The biggest takeaway from the White House event was that we need to support transportation as an industry and support the people who want to be in trucking. When I got my start all those years ago, I had a coworker with over 40 years of experience take me under his wing and give me guidance. We still stay in touch to this day and talk about what’s going on in my career and his retirement. It’s that type of support that all new drivers should have when they come into this industry.

To be invited to that event was validating on a career note. Sitting there on the White House lawn made me really feel that American Central Transport’s doing something right and positively impacting the industry.

When it comes to automation in trucking, what do you think the future looks like?

I truly don’t think the trucking industry will ever be fully autonomous. I think there are going to be segments where we see platooning or some other moves towards automation, but as a whole, I don’t think our industry will ever be there.

I do think trucking jobs are going to look different in 15-20 years, but I believe that behind every steering wheel there’s still going to be a driver piloting it.

What advice do you have to give to other recruiters in the trucking industry?

In trucking right now, drivers and recruiters absolutely need each other. But it’s extremely important that recruiters are painting an accurate picture of who the company is that they’re recruiting for.

The worst thing you can have is an orientation surprise. In the 8 years I’ve been in recruiting, an orientation surprise is never positive. You never want a driver to say, “Well I didn’t know about this”, or “I wasn’t told about that”. As a recruiter, you need to make sure that you’re upfront about everything with drivers, even if it’s something they don’t ask about, but you feel is important to the position.  

If you’re doing your job as a recruiter, you’ll start to realize when a driver is going to be a great fit for your company but also when a driver isn’t. If you say something like, “Hey, you sound like a great driver. I think we’d work well together down the line, but right now, I feel it isn’t the best fit. Let’s touch base in six months”, you’ll be surprised at how much drivers will appreciate that honesty. And once you do connect down the road, you already have that foundation of honesty built. 

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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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covid recruitingWhile the COVID-19 pandemic seems to mostly be in the rearview mirror, it brought a lot of changes to the trucking industry. While some of these changes seem to be going by the wayside, some look like they’re here to stay. Here are 5 ways that COVID has impacted driver recruiting. 

1. Remote Interviewing and Onboarding Process

One of the biggest changes that COVID brought to the workforce was remote interviewing and onboarding. While most carriers implemented remote interviewing and onboarding when that was the only option, some have begun to move towards it as full time.  

Why? One reason is that it can lead to carriers finding and interviewing better driver candidates. In a labor market this competitive, something as simple as offering a driver the ability to do the interview and onboarding process from wherever they’d like could be the thing that sets your carrier apart.  

Another reason is that speed has been shown to be a top metric in getting candidates to come on board with your carrier. Having a remote process speeds everything up, giving candidates less time to find and accept another job offer.

2. Vaccine/Booster Requirements

Even before the COVID vaccines were made available, there was a hot debate on whether or not companies should require employees to be vaccinated. This debate got even hotter when a federal mandate was announced that would require some truck drivers to get the vaccine.  

While nothing ever came of that mandate, with the Supreme Court striking it down as unconstitutional, companies still have their own discretion on whether or not they require drivers to get vaccinated. 

3. Driver Pay Increasing

Pay has been a pain point for drivers for decades. Though there are a number of issues that have contributed to it, most agree that the deregulation of the trucking industry in the 1980’s was the biggest reason that drivers began to earn less.  

But the COVID pandemic has led to a surge in driver pay. With increased freight demand and competition for drivers, carriers are increasing payroll budgets to ensure they have drivers in seats. Wal-Mart just recently announced that the average pay for their truck drivers would be increased to between $95,000 and $110,000 annually.  

While the majority of carriers may not be able to match what mega fleets like Wal-Mart can provide, offering drivers overtime and detention pay are two ways that carriers can show they’re committed to offering fair compensation.   

Another thing carriers are noticing is that it’s much easier to fill home daily positions than it is to fill traditional OTR positions, even if the money is better. A lot of drivers are fine with taking less in pay, if that means being home with their family each night.  

4. Truck Shortage

The truck driver shortage has been a well-documented and much talked about issue for years, even before COVID. Another issue that’s been becoming more prevalent is a shortage on trucks as well.  

Jason Crowell, Director of Recruiting with Drive My Way client, Custom Commodities Transport has been dealing with this issue since last year. 

“My bosses were almost ready to tell us to stop advertising our driver jobs because they were afraid we weren’t going to have enough trucks. Luckily, it didn’t come to that. It’s an interesting time for the operations people, the salespeople, and definitely the recruiting team to have a goal to get to x hires but not have trucks to put them in.” 

Just like with consumer cars and trucks, the shortage of semi-trucks is caused by a shortage in computers chips that are used in these vehicles. These issues were originally brought on by COVID supply chain problems, but are now being exacerbated by the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, as well as lockdowns in China.  

Carriers should prepare for this truck shortage to be the norm as it’s expected to go on for a while longer, with some predictions that it’ll last until 2024.  

5. Increased Driver Shortage

When the pandemic first started, many drivers were laid off due to an almost complete halt in demand for moving freight. Once things started to open up again in 2021, the opposite seemed to happen. Trucking companies found it more and more difficult to find drivers to help them meet the huge increase in demand they were experiencing.  

Just how difficult is it for trucking companies to find drivers? A study by Coyote and Emsi found that it takes 9 times the amount of job postings to hire a truck driver than it does any other blue-collar profession.  

This is why it’s more important than ever for trucking companies to focus their time and resources where it matters.

Drive My Way works with carriers to get their job postings in front of the right drivers at the right time. We’ve helped our clients find the right candidates to fill their CDL job openings and we’re able to help you too. 

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