Twenty-three percent of Storey Trucking‘s drivers are women.
That figure is significantly higher than the national average. Across the country, 6 percent of truck drivers were female in 2017, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Most of the Alabama-based company’s female drivers work in teams with their spouses or significant others. The workload was shared, but the lines of communication with management were not.
“Historically, the male team driver would be the primary communicator when coming into the office. He is typically in the office more often than the women,” said President Eric Storey.
That began to change in September. The company began using WorkHound to solicit anonymous feedback from drivers. Now almost weekly, females are providing feedback and insights from women.
WorkHound feedback is initially anonymous, but employees have the option to identify themselves. This feature is valuable for managers who want to deal with specific issues on a case-by-case basis, or if they want to better understand their whole workforce.
For Storey Trucking, the WorkHound platform has helped elevate the voices of female drivers.
“Their feedback has been concise, to the point, and has often been accompanied by detailed ideas for consideration,” Storey said. “We can’t ask for anything better than that.”
This emerging dynamic has encouraged the company to keep a strong focus on planning. All drivers want to keep moving and earning. They also want to plan ahead for life on the road, whether it’s planning for healthy meals or warm showers. When management does its job anticipating drivers’ needs and concerns, it helps drivers better manage their day-to-day lives, Storey said.
The benefits of employee feedback aren’t just limited to women. Storey Trucking drivers have been receptive to the WorkHound platform since the company started using it. Drivers are increasingly willing to share ideas and thoughts in face-to-face communications. The platform has helped the company create a more receptive, inclusive environment for all drivers.
“It’s important that we construct our driver program in ways that represent every driver,” Storey said.
WorkHound is also featured in Storey Trucking’s recruitment efforts.
“We let new driver prospects know about our partnership with Workhound and trust it speaks to our commitment to treating each Storey driver as a qualified professional that has something important to say — that we really want and need to hear,” Storey said.
Along with recruitment, retention is one of the biggest challenges facing the trucking industry. Storey’s retention rates are better than the industry average, a success the president attributes to “investing in our people first.”
Elevating women’s voices in company discussions is important. While their concerns often mirror those of male drivers, a diverse range of voices inside the organization is good for understanding all challenges drivers face.
“Our employees deserve to be heard and acknowledged, and they always have constructive ideas about ways to better the experience,” Storey said. “Our drivers are our valued team members, and we want everyone that works for Storey Trucking to have a voice.”