We've mentioned that hiring truck drivers requires some imagination. The same is true in truck driver employment retention. Once you have your drivers, you'll need to stay creative to keep them. We often have discussed ways you can show your drivers that you’re invested in them and care about their well-being. One of the best ways you can do this is by helping your drivers stay active.
Investing in your drivers’ health and well-being will help convince your drivers to stick with you. Large companies like Prime Inc. have taken this challenge to heart and have built facilities for their drivers to use in Springfield, Missouri. Their main headquarters features a full-size basketball court and fitness center for their drivers. They have also built a fitness facility at their terminal in Pittston, Pennsylvania. These gyms double as both a recruiting tool and a perk for their current drivers for working for Prime. Obviously, not every trucking company has the billion dollar budget that Prime does to do this, but the concept is applicable everywhere. We've visited Jetco's facilities in Houston and they invested in a fantastic gym that resembles what you would find at a nice hotel. It didn't break the bank and it has everything you need at a smaller scale. Most importantly the President of the company, Kyle Kristynik, works out with the drivers after work.
You probably have a drivers’ lounge of some kind; set up a ping pong table in there. Hunt down a basketball hoop someone doesn’t want anymore to set up outside. For the drivers who are on the road, set up challenges tracking steps through Fitbits. These are great, relatively inexpensive ways for drivers to blow off steam and get moving. These are perfect opportunities to set up competitions among employees to build up camaraderie with a fitness benefit.
Exercise doesn’t do you much good if all you eat is junk. Eating right when you’re driving on the job all day can be a real challenge, so try and lend your drivers a hand. Put together a seminar on eating healthier on the road. Provide healthy meal recipes that a driver can make with a small skillet and proteins that fit in their mini-fridge. Even better, have one or a few drivers who are passionate about cooking in the truck provide a quick YouTube presentation for the entire fleet. Drivers will ultimately make these choices on their own but seeing one of their peers leading by example will be the best way to get
Even better, have one or a few drivers who are passionate about cooking in the truck provide a quick YouTube presentation for the entire fleet. Drivers will ultimately make these choices on their own but seeing one of their peers leading by example will be the best way to get buy-in.
Exercise and A Good Diet = Retention
Alright, there's more to it than that simple equation. But if you make an effort in this area, the insurance premiums drop and drivers see that you care. If your drivers have something fun to do on their downtime on the job, they will enjoy working at your company and build camaraderie with their fellow drivers. And even those who don’t use what you bring will notice the effort to do something for the driver. The same goes for promoting health. Maybe an older driver hears the message and starts to lay off the salt. Preventing a heart attack is a worthwhile endeavor.
Truck driver retention is a constant challenge and as we always remind you, it starts with the creation of a driver-centric culture. Going out of your way to keep your drivers active, healthy and happy is a crucial part of that development. Not only will doing so help reduce driver turnover at your company, but it just might bring you a few extra new ones as well.