Driver retention is an ongoing issue in the transportation industry. Overregulation and an aging workforce are the major causes behind the retention issue. Pay that fails to keep up with the demands of the job only exacerbates the problem. Considering these challenges, it’s not surprising that fleet managers are struggling to hold on to drivers.
Some believe that government overregulation creates regulatory drag. Some of the regulations drivers cite as problematic include electronic logging devices standards, speed limiters, ever-changing health guidelines, and hair testing. While the Department of Transportation designs regulations to improve safety, implementing them can prove costly and detrimental to driver retention. In particular, ELDs and speed limiters pose the greatest capacity threat. Experts believe these two regulations could affect capacity by 8-10%.
While businesses cannot do much about aging employees, they can do more to target new talent. For example, women are a largely untapped pool of candidates. Looking into candidates with commercial driving backgrounds such as prior military can help as well.
The issue of wages is not cut and dry. While pay must reflect the rigors of working in transportation, other areas need improvement as well. Appealing to millennials, for example, is an area where many motor carriers can do more. Some ways to achieve this are providing guaranteed downtime and payment as well as time at home with friends and family.
Other ways that transportation companies can improve driver retention include:
- Identifying and working with support groups such as Women in Trucking
- Improve and expand referral programs and bonuses
- Focus on driver quality of life and wellness
Transportation companies cannot ignore the cost of turnover. Time spent training and mentoring new employees adds up quickly. Improving retention rates has a direct effect on controlling costs. Contact the AssuredPartners team of transportation specialists to learn more about trucking best practices, risk management and coverages for your fleet.