(2 minute read)
This article is written by guest author Joey Slaughter, a 25-year trucking veteran.
Turnover creates recruiting
I’ve attended a few truck shows over the years and have always noticed the army of recruiters who are usually located in one general area. Many times at these events, I see the same trucking companies represented. They have vast resources, recruiting budgets, and subsequently, a lot of driver seats to fill. Is it their lightning fast growth that requires them to actively recruit drivers as aggressively as the military looks for new members? Usually not, especially in these stagnant economic times. This means that the primary reason for an aggressive recruiting effort is to combat the effects of driver turnover.
Great drivers sniff out the truth
Professional drivers with adequate experience and a good driving record have a very valuable skill set these days. They aren’t going to work for the companies that are launching these frantic recruiting campaigns. The trucking companies that operate that way are in a “Catch 22,” a situation where there is no possibility of a desired outcome. They appear desperate as they accept drivers with DUI’s, numerous speeding tickets and other less than desirable qualities.
Happy drivers are a trucking company's secret weapon
Some of the best trucking companies use their own drivers as their recruiting force.
In order to do this, they must already have a high retention rate, which signifies that they’re doing things right. Who better knows what it takes to succeed with a company than the professional drivers who are already excelling at the job?
These companies are able to reduce their recruiting costs by sending out their best marketing tool all across the country each day: their driver, driving their company truck and pulling the company trailer.
Many of these companies encourage their drivers to recruit quality personnel who they think would fit in with the company. They do this by offering referral bonuses of $500+ to existing drivers who can recruit an individual who gets hired, completes orientation and delivers their first load. Think about it: there is no expenditure until there are quantifiable results. This is a more focused approach to finding quality employees.
The money saved when reducing the company recruiting budget should be invested in their current pool of drivers. They are the most important employees in the company and they need to be compensated very well. They aren’t only transporting the freight that actually pays the bills for the company, they are the most effective recruiting and marketing tools that the company have. A substantial investment in driver compensation not only retains the current work force, but helps guarantee the future workforce.
About Joey Slaughter:
Joey is a 25 year veteran of the trucking industry, spending time as an operator of dry vans, reefers, doubles, gasoline tankers, step decks, and auto haulers. His time as a company driver and now independent owner operator have led to seeing the industry from numerous perspectives. He’s also the author of the ebook “The Beginner’s Guide to Auto Transport".
Beyond Joey’s trucking career he is a US Army veteran, a representative for Freightliner’s Team Run Smart, and an avid writer.