The “Trucking Generation” is still on the verge of retirement.
In 1994, 60% of the truck drivers were between the ages of 25 and 44. In 2018, 55% of drivers are over the age of 45. This group of truck drivers, known as the “trucking generation,” is aging and on the verge of retirement.
Breakdown of Truck Drivers By Age
Driver turnover is actually down (to 78% from a peak of 98% at the beginning of 2018)!
The driver turnover rate peaked at 98% in the first half of 2018 before decreasing to the current rate of 78%. Companies are paying their drivers more which is working to keep drivers in place. At the same time, the freight market is softening which, according to Bob Costello, chief economist for ATA, leads to lower driver turnover.
How are companies improving their turnover rate?
1. Increasing Pay
Sometimes making employees happy isn’t all that complicated.
2. Leveraging safety technology to make drivers feel safer in their trucks
Truck driving is one of the most dangerous jobs in America. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the truck driving occupation had the 7th highest fatality rate at 26.8 fatalities for every 100,000 full-time workers.
3. Streamline onboarding, job load, and payment processes through technology
Technology can be used to simplify the business side of Transportation for both the employer and employee. Utilize technology that will allow truck drivers to get on the road faster and get them paid quicker.
4. Understand the drivers are alone a lot of the time and communication with them is important
Truck drivers are alone, a lot. Let them know they are appreciated. Check in on the long haulers. Encourage feedback; while you business owners are caught up in the daily rush and don’t have as much time to think strategy, the drivers have countless hours of just the road and their thoughts. Ask them about their ideas. They’ll appreciate being heard and you might hear a perspective that is useful.
5. Recognizing and rewarding performanceHere are some of the ways trucking companies are rewarding performance and boosting morale:
- Recognize milestones for tenure and safety
- Hold banquets
- Provide an occasional free lunch at the terminal