The truck driver shortage isn’t getting any easier to solve. With experienced drivers retiring and fewer young people entering the profession, trucking companies are struggling to find and keep drivers. But just because recruiting is hard doesn't mean you should give up. In this blog post, we'll share some strategies for recruiting and retaining truck drivers.
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Our episode of “Solving The Driver Problem” features special guest Jason Crowell, Recruiting and Retention Manager at Brady Trucking, Inc.
Scott Rea and Crowell discussed the recruiting evolution in the trucking industry. With their insight, you can attract a fleet of qualified drivers, even in the midst of the ever-changing supply and demand curve.
“Rather than talking about the company, we talk about the driver.”
As Crowell points out, every business is a people business. Your business is connected to people. Your employees are connected to you, to each other, and to the market they serve. If you want successful recruiting ads, try focusing on your drivers as people.
Crowell utilizes recruitment ads that feature videos of drivers talking about their experience with Brady Trucking. The videos aren't about Brady Trucking, though. They're about the driver and their unique perspective. Crowell knows that emotional connection causes people watching the ads to act quickly and click the call to action.
“No company needs to recruit everyone. We need to recruit the right ones, not millions of the wrong ones.”
Crowell has a tough job selling to drivers. His drivers face long, hard hauls that take them away from their families, their friends, and their homes for weeks on end. How does he convince someone that it's the right job for them? He doesn't. He just tells it like it is.
One way to hire best-fit drivers is to utilize a "realistic job preview." A realistic job preview is a short video that shows job candidates what the job they're applying for is like, including specific job duties and job requirements, before they apply.
By investing in a realistic job preview, you will:
Recruiting and retaining millennial drivers can be challenging. While it’s true that generations have different expectations, these tactics will help you be effective with ALL generations.
You need to understand millennial values and build recruiting and retention strategies around them. And best of all these are not just millennial values - these are human being values that everyone wants.
We’ve put together a number of articles that can help you attract and retain millennial drivers:
Apprenticeship programs and Finishing Schools expand your recruiting pools and help you ensure new drivers don’t come with bad habits. A driver’s tenure with your company is a better predictor of having an accident than a driver’s tenure in the industry. In other words, you can create safer drivers from rookies than by recruiting experienced drivers. Some of the benefits of offering an apprenticeship program include:
Registered apprenticeships enable employers to provide on-the-job training that meets industry standards while also giving workers competitive wages, benefits, and the opportunity to earn nationally recognized credentials. Through these programs, truckers can develop a wide range of fundamental trucking skills such as hard braking, lane changing, anti-lock braking, and tractor-trailer coupling. Registered apprenticeship programs have been an emphasis of the Biden administration in an effort to improve driver training programs.
When was the last time you applied to work at your company? How hard is it? How long does it take? Do you feel good or frustrated at the end?
It's important to ensure that each potential driver has the skills and experience to effectively do the job, but also that they’re able to get through the job pipeline quickly.
Reducing friction in the recruiting and hiring process can improve the quality of job candidates in several ways:
We live in a VUCA world - volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous. That much is out of our control. You're not helpless, though. It’s still possible to solve your driver problem, as long as you take a new approach.
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