Trucking companies know that in an era of driver shortages, a sound driver-retention plan is critical to keeping their trucks rolling. It’s easier—and cheaper—to hold onto a trained employee than to recruit and train new ones.
That’s true for firms in every sector of the industry, including tank-trucking companies like Plattsmouth, Neb.-based Liquid Trucking. One of the country’s 30 largest tank-trucking companies, Liquid Trucking serves the continental U.S. and Canada with a fleet of more than 150 tractors and 280 tanker trailers, specializing in agricultural, food-grade, and hazmat shipments.
To attract and keep drivers, Liquid offers well-equipped trucks and a competitive pay structure. However, in 2014, company officials became concerned that Liquid’s turnover rate was out of step with its benefits and culture. Drivers were leaving at a higher-than-expected rate, and the management team didn’t know how to reverse this trend.
[…] The study, by Stay Metrics, a driver training and retention solution provider, takes a deep dive into a specific aspect of driver “churn”: early turnover—defined as a departure within the first year of employment. It’s a bigger problem than you might realize: More than 70 percent of driver turnover occurs within the first year of employment, with 35 percent happening in the first three months, the company says.[…]
A driver shortage predicted for years by trucking firms could be reduced if carriers use data analytics instead of professional recruiters to find the best employees for the job, according to Stay Metrics, a trucking-industry analyst firm affiliated with the University of Notre Dame.Trucking companies across the U.S. have warned for years that changing demographics and a more difficult operating environment would lead to a shortage of qualified drivers, which in turn could dramatically increase the cost of bringing goods to market. The American Trucking Associations (ATA), a trade group representing mostly larger fleets, reported a shortage of 48,000 drivers as of the end of 2015, a figure that could reach 175,000 drivers by 2024, ATA says. Some private forecasts said the magnitude of the shortage could be worse than that.