There’s been a massive change coming to the trucking industry for years. A slow dissatisfaction that’s been building as an older generation retires and younger drivers take the wheel; as ecommerce demands outpace supply chains; and as more people across every industry demand better working conditions and a better quality of life. Drivers want better work-life balance, better working conditions, and better pay. The trucking industry needs to offer more to drivers to boost recruiting and retention.
But how can you offer more to drivers in a sustainable way, amid constantly increasing operational costs and competition from new tech-forward companies trying to disrupt the industry? Here are three strategies.
Offer meaningful benefits
According to a Commercial Carrier Journal survey, the top three changes that would most influence drivers of all ages to change fleet or jobs are greater compensation (35%), more time at home (17%), and more control over routes (17%).
While higher pay obviously ranks first, that may not be something you can afford right now. The other two factors boil down to control. Drivers want to be able to choose routes that allow for daily or weekly home time. They want to select local routes whenever possible. It’s that element of control that allows for greater work-life balance, greater job satisfaction, and ultimately—greater loyalty.
Consider offering benefits that provide that aspect of control to your drivers, in addition to ones that provide meaningful improvements to their day-to-day lives. These might include:
- Greater control over routes and more home time
- Student loan repayment and/or driver training reimbursement
- Competitive maternity & paternity leave offerings
- Paths for regular promotions or pay raises
- Mental and physical health benefits, such as free memberships to trucker fitness programs
- Flexible work and flexible pay
Offering and promoting these benefits can boost your recruitment efforts and lead to a bigger pipeline of applicants. And because they’re benefits that have a lasting impact, they’ll also lead to increased driver retention down the line.
Address cash flow concerns
The life of a driver is often fraught with expenses, from insurance and fuel to constant truck maintenance. Consider what happens if a driver’s truck breaks down in the middle of the night and needs repair. Or if they run out of fuel unexpectedly.
They may end up reaching into their own wallet to cover the cost. In fact, for an independent truck driver, their expenses can average more than 70% of their gross pay. This means that 70% of what they earn is going right back into expenses for managing their business.
Another option might be turning to outdated payment processes like EFS Checks, but that can take too long when time is of the essence. A third option would be using apps like Venmo or CashApp to request an instant transfer—but with the new IRS regulations on how much money can be sent to contractors, using these apps isn’t always feasible.
Beyond one-off payment emergencies, drivers also benefit from faster settlements for jobs completed. It’s crucial you find a way to pay drivers instantly so they have enough cash flow to cover daily expenses and any unexpected expenses that come up, too.
Provide faster pay
Many companies are turning to higher pay to attract more talent—some to the tune of $10,000 cash bonuses. While higher pay will obviously help with recruiting, it’s not something you can dole out long-term. Faster payments for truck drivers are just as covetable.
But how do you provide truly instant pay? Factoring companies may boast "instant settlements," but pay can still take days to land in your drivers' accounts. You need a partner that enables real-time payments, pushed to accounts within seconds.
Branch partners with companies and carriers every day to make this happen.
By partnering with Branch, you can:
✓ Deliver TRUE instant settlements to drivers for a better on-the-road experience. Send bulk or individual payments to drivers at any time—even nights and weekends—at no cost.
✓ Help drivers and owner-operators stop worrying about cash flow concerns so they can reinvest in their businesses and get back to driving without worry.
✓ Build a bigger pipeline of applicants and retain your existing workforce by offering improved cash flow and faster payments.
Branch integrates with your existing payroll to help you go from long pay cycles to truly instant payments—helping you recruit and retain more drivers at zero cost.
Want to learn more? Read more about Branch for Trucking and Logistics or click below to talk to a Branch expert.