Five ways to successfully recruit and retain jobs

The following article is provided by Tom MacCallum, VP of loss control at IAT Insurance Group.

Anyone who has been waiting – and waiting – for goods to be delivered, whether they are a buyer, seller, or manufacturer knows that US transportation is in trouble. Almost every link in the chain has been weakened and carpooling is no exception.

Recruiting and booking has only gotten worse with the COVID-19 pandemic. The American Trucking Associations estimates that the driver shortage hit a record high of 80,000 drivers last year and is expected to reach 160,000 by 2030. For an individual fleet operator, the average cost of replacing a driver is approximately $8,200. The driver shortage is a huge cost to the trucking industry and the wider economy, affecting corporate profits, the stock market, and the cost of goods and services for all of us.

The question is: How can the business establish itself and retain drivers? Because there is no single cause of the driver shortage, there is no single answer.

Here are 5 IAT strategies for creating a successful recruitment and retention strategy.

  1. As truckers scramble to fill jobs, signing bonuses are becoming the norm, and wages have been rising over the past few years. But it will take more than that to find and keep drivers. In addition to traditional benefits such as medical or retirement benefits, many voluntary benefits can be sweetened — things like fuel card discount programs, access to telemedicine (eg, doctor appointments), temporary and permanent disability, critical illness, and life insurance. . When truck drivers work as independent contractors (1099 paid), they do not have and often cannot afford health insurance. A voluntary benefits package that is flexible and affordable can make the job more attractive to all employees.

    Take telemedicine, for example, where a driver can schedule medical care around the clock. This is a great benefit for long-haul truck drivers who can get sick from long hours of work and lack of exercise. According to the CDC, long-haul drivers are twice as likely to be considered obese than other US workers. This increases the risk of sleep apnea, heart disease and diabetes, among other diseases. They also have a higher risk of high blood pressure and are twice as likely as other workers to smoke. Telemedicine, a cost-effective benefit, can help drivers manage their health. In addition, this benefit can reduce the time lost to illness or early medical treatment.

  1. Employees want to be recognized and appreciated. Although benefits work there, a reward based on a specific behavior can have a big impact – and can help retain employees. For example, instead of (or in addition to) rewarding drivers for longevity, a safety-related reward can increase motivation to drive. The average cost of all major car accidents is approximately $91,000 per accident. A safety reward system can help reduce the number of incidents and their often damaging consequences. When setting up an incentive plan, include specific goals such as identifying gaps in security training or lowering the cost of collisions. To get buy-in, work with staff across all departments as you launch the program. Listen to the challenges and preferences of your drivers. Choose rewards that your team will find important; it’s not always money. Schedule a time to give the prize. Every year? A quarter? You want drivers to see immediate benefits from their efforts. Finally, find a way to follow up on what everyone agrees on. While many truckers have in-cab telematics and can track drivers and behavior, many do not. Anecdotal evidence shows that as a company grows, these programs become organized and advanced. Regular programs include safety awareness dinners and “million” clubs only. Other informal programs include driver meetings that highlight company safety updates or recognize driver efforts. Consider buying your own driver’s tires after a few accident-free miles; building a driver’s seat; hold a driver appreciation BBQ; hire a security manager to manage traffic – and more. It’s a win-win when drivers are encouraged to drive safely – there will be fewer injuries and fatalities and less money for employers.
  2. Drivers want to work for a company that can protect them and they cannot fail to do so. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 843 motor vehicle deaths in 2019. Although it may not be obvious, creating high standards of safety and maintenance can increase your popularity among drivers. A company with high standards will attract the kind of employees who are motivated to meet those standards. If you want a great passion, knowledge of the latest technology, a commitment to safety, quality, and security, look into finding job candidates who do the same. This can be easier said than done if the pool of candidates is not very deep. But if you respect employees, pay them well, protect them, and take care of their needs, they will tell others. Your pipe will grow. However, to get there, you may need to change your compensation package. Paying drivers per mile, which many carriers do, adds stress to an already difficult job. It can also improve safety with drivers traveling at unsafe speeds to make up for lost time and miles on the road, for example. Let prospective and existing employees know that they will be well compensated for their good work. Another way to develop a positive culture around safety and maintenance is to open up channels of communication and create a culture of feedback. Ask employees about their needs and wants – and listen. They know what will improve their work. Ultimately, as the National Surface Transportation Safety Center for Excellence has documented in a recent study, trucking companies that prioritize safety through management and technologies improve operations. All of the carriers in the study who saw a significant improvement attributed their results to changes in management. management management of management of management of management of management of management of management of management the management of the management of the management of the car.
  3. Employee satisfaction is strongly linked to drivers that focus on the driver as an individual. Examples include trucking companies that have driver development programs that combine drivers with instructors, managers, ombudsmen, and even counselors. Its purpose is to provide prompt assistance and response to driver concerns and concerns. To help maintain good health and wellness, another company offers a weight management program (MetaMyo) designed specifically for their drivers. It provides daily drivers with food and menus to follow while on the road. It also tells them which car stops and stores the items. Following this advice not only helps prevent illness and absenteeism, but also helps employees feel positive about themselves, their employers, and their work. Being healthy means reducing stress, which can affect concentration on the road. When your drivers are engaged and committed to the company, you retain more drivers. Car carriers are taking a more supportive approach by creating a culture around their drivers, doing more to make the driver’s life easier, including checking with the drivers regularly to resolve any problems and helping them find a place to park and rest, for example, all by paying them well.
  4. This sounds simple, but it is not. Driver shortages can cause some companies to abandon good hiring practices and fill positions with any driver. Resist this and instead consider implementing the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP), which is not new but is gaining traction recently. The FMCSA PSP has been offering easy access to five years of commercial drivers’ accident and three-year driving records for years. Although not mandatory, this program is considered the best option because accessing these records electronically is more efficient than accessing information through the Freedom of Information Act or the Privacy Act. Companies that use PSPs to screen job applicants have been documented to reduce their accident rates by 8% and driver absenteeism rates by 17%. For medium-sized carriers, the reduction in accidents was more significant: 20.6% for carriers with six to 20 drivers and 12.1% for carriers with 21 to 100 drivers. A 12-month study of a commercial shipping company showed that using The PSP program actively prevented 863 accidents and more than 3,500 incidents of drivers outside of work. Hiring drivers with a solid PSP record greatly reduces the risk of accidents and driving problems. With powerful mobile intelligence, fleet operators are well equipped to ensure safety and behavior among their drivers.