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Tips To Reduce Truck Driver Turnover

Truck Driver

Employee retention is a concern for most businesses. However, there are few areas where retention matters more than with trucking firms. If you can’t keep your drivers, you can’t move freight.

What makes it even worse is that turnover is high in the trucking industry. The turnover rate among carriers is often above 90%. These aren’t workers leaving the industry for other jobs, they’re simply going to other trucking firms that offer better opportunities.

Numbers like that indicate that trucking companies could do a lot to improve retention. This post will offer some tips to help companies reduce driver turnover.

Review Driver Compensation

Drivers want fair compensation just like any other professional. These are skilled workers doing a difficult and demanding job. If you are not offering compensation that compares to industry standards, it won’t be long before your drivers move on. Salaries are an important part of this consideration, but benefits can do a lot to enhance your retention efforts. Make sure you offer competitive health plans, vacation time, and retirement benefits.

Hiring Practices

Poor hiring practices can lead to high turnover in any industry. However, it can have an even greater impact on a trucking firm. As we mentioned before, the job is demanding, and it requires a higher level of commitment. Fortunately, there are things you can do to create a successful hiring process. Screen drivers thoroughly and create an interview process to get a feel for the individual. You should also review your onboarding process to ensure higher retention rates.

Offer Bonuses

Money is a big motivator for truck drivers. Most drivers accept the rigors of the job because it offers good money. One way to make your company even more attractive is to offer various bonuses in addition to the salary. For example, drivers will appreciate a nice holiday bonus. You could also offer performance bonuses. Being more fuel efficient or driving for so many months without going off schedule could be bonus opportunities for drivers.

Be Supportive

Trucking is a tough job, with drivers spending much of their time alone. It can be easy for drivers to feel at odds or even alienated from their employers. Trucking businesses should create a supportive work environment and let drivers know they are valued. Being appreciative and supportive can go a long way toward building loyalty among your drivers.

Show Recognition

Recognition can also be a good way to boost retention. One way you could do this is with truck driver awards. For example, you could have safety awards that come with certificates or even bonuses. You could also have various milestone awards like a million-mile club. It could also increase as the driver reaches new milestones.

Driver Well-being

Trucking firms should think more about driver well-being. If you show that you care about the health and well-being of drivers, they will reward you with greater loyalty. Along with that, it is also good for your business. Drivers who are healthier and less stressed will be less likely to need time off for illness and other issues. That means it can also help you prevent disruptions to your trucking operations.

Gifts and Perks

Some nice gifts and job perks can also be a way to help with retention efforts. For example, you could give a gift to drivers when they win some of the awards we mentioned. The classic example is giving a driver a watch for years of service. However, a more modern alternative could be a new phone. Gift cards for a meal out can also be a good gift for a driver. They might also appreciate things like coffee and breakfast foods at the terminal when they arrive in the morning.

Truck Upgrades and Updates

The truck is a driver’s primary work environment. Some trucking companies make the mistake of being cheap about upgrades and updates to their trucks. However, a truck that is in better condition and more enjoyable to drive is an investment in your drivers. While you might not see the return directly on the bottom line, it will boost motivation and save money on driver turnover.

Ask for Feedback

If you want information about what you can do to reduce turnover, there is no better source than your drivers. They will know what they want and the things that will make them more likely to stay or go. Ask for their opinions and listen to what they have to say. Review the feedback and act on as much of it as possible. Even the simple act of asking their opinion will show that you care and could boost retention.

These are a few of the top strategies to reduce truck driver turnover. However, there is a lot you can do, and every company is different. Try different things and make adjustments to fit the needs of your company and drivers.

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