Hiring truck drivers in this competitive market can be a tall order. The market is competitive, and companies who improve driver satisfaction by using both technology and the right programs are much more likely to retain and hire drivers for the long haul. Here’s how you can attract, and keep drivers in this turbulent era.
Why the truck driver market is so competitive
It’s no question that the market for good truck drivers is hyper-competitive at the moment. There are a few reasons.
Firstly, the demand for goods transportation by truck is high, which leads to a high demand for truck drivers. Secondly, the trucking industry has a high turnover rate, with many drivers leaving the industry or retiring. This creates a constant need for new drivers to fill open positions.
A for-hire driver’s job can be demanding, with long hours on the road and time away from home, making it difficult to attract and retain drivers. The COVID-19 pandemic has also had a significant impact on the trucking industry, with an increase in e-commerce and online shopping leading to an increase in demand for last-mile truck drivers to transport goods faster than ever before.
How to use technology to improve work satisfaction
Why are truck drivers leaving their jobs and in some cases the industry? Because they aren’t happy where they are. Long hours lead to drivers who not only feel overworked but feel unsafe. They can also feel underappreciated. And when those drivers leave they take your reputation out into the world, which can make it harder when it comes to hiring their replacements.
Some of the best ways to retain drivers are also the same methods you can use to hire truck drivers in this competitive market. They include improving safety and efficiency, as well as committing to protect drivers.
There are four easy ways to increase driver safety for those working in your fleet.
- Training: Implement training programs and renewal training to keep drivers on top of safety policies and procedures.
- Create clear safety procedures: make sure you have the above-mentioned policies and procedures in place, and that you enforce and measure them.
- Stick to regular maintenance and safety inspections on your equipment. It is easy to let this slide when you get busy, but don’t. It can be a huge factor in driver retention.
- Usesafety technology like mobile applications or video to improve driver performance and take corrective action if needed. Always be sure drivers know this tech is in place and how it will be used.
But safety is just the first step.
Drivers hate to waste time and hate deadhead runs or downtime more than anything else. This is why it is important to develop a system for better efficiency. Look at routing, load timing, and more.
This is another area where technology can help, including routing and dispatching software, navigation software, weigh station bypass, trailer tracking, and more. The more informed a driver is, and the more efficient they can be, the more satisfied they will become.
At the same time, this eliminates overtime and overtired drivers offering them more time at home with their families. This solution also saves fuel and puts less load on your fleet, saving you money as well as helping you keep drivers. When it comes to retaining drivers, efficiency is near the top of the list.
Protect your drivers
What about when bad things happen to good drivers? Do you defend your drivers if they are in a no-fault accident? Do you have technology in place to prove that fault? What about breakdowns? Do you have software for crash detection that can call for help even if your driver can’t?
These are all key safety and efficiency features that let drivers know you are on their side and there to protect them. Time on the road can feel lonely and isolated. The more you help your drivers feel connected and valued, the more likely they are to stay with your company.
How Solera Fleet Solutions can help
How do Solera Fleet solutions come in? We offer a variety of software solutions to meet your company’s needs. This includes load boards and TMS, but also driver-focused features that improve their experience overall. They include:
The Mentor eDriving App: This app helps you score driver safety, offers training on the go, and even improves the behaviors of at-risk drivers, producing a 51% risk reduction over time.
SuperVision: Offers the most comprehensive continuous license monitoring solutions in the US and Canada, offering everything from driver training modules to the monitoring of Hazmat and other documentation, all in one place. This improves both your and your driver’s efficiency and safety.
SmartDrive Video Safety: Seeing around your vehicles and inside the cab enables you to continuously improve driver performance and in the case of an incident, document that your driver was doing everything right.
Omnitracs: Helps create more efficient routing, improved driver workflows, and the ability to bypass weigh stations, which all result in making the driver’s day run smoothly and keeps their stress levels low.
Spireon: Trailer and asset management tools help you save time, and keep your trucks full and moving on schedule.
Setting Your Company Apart
The key to hiring and retaining great talent is to set your company apart from the rest. A great safety record, initial and ongoing training, efficient operations, and a reputation for protecting your drivers and looking out for their safety will help new drivers feel comfortable working for you.
But it will also help you keep those who are already working for you, and keep them from looking for greener pastures elsewhere.
Want to learn more about hiring and retaining drivers in a competitive market, and learning how we can help? Check out all fleet and driver management solutions today.