Whether you own a large trucking company or are a smaller business just looking for some extra help, recruiting and hiring the right drivers can be a real chore. But, there are some strategies you can use to make it easier and more successful for everyone involved.
Where to Find Truck Drivers for Hire
To find quality drivers you have to meet them where they are, you can’t expect them just to come walking through the door of your business. With almost everyone having a cell phone in today’s world and 75% of those drivers checking Facebook each day, that (and other online avenues) will be where you are going to have the largest pool when recruiting new drivers.
Building an online presence through a website, blog or social media accounts will not only give you paths to communicating with potential new drivers, but it gives them an opportunity to understand the culture of your business and if it could be a good fit for them.
You can also utilize online job boards, aggregator sites (ex: Indeed, ZipRecruiter, LinkedIn), creating a great blog and efficiently adding in SEO so the algorithm ranks your posts at the top, Pay-Per-Click Campaigns, and a Driver Recruitment landing page on your website giving them a call to action. With so many different ways for drivers to find you, it’s important that you utilize as many as possible to give you the best opportunity to find qualified drivers.
Let’s Start with Some of the Do’s When Recruiting Truck Drivers
- Do Keep Your Social Media Accounts Up-to-Date and Relevant: If someone clicks on your page and you haven’t posted in 2 months this may have them questioning what kind of business you run. Many people’s first go-to research tool is social media to see if they feel like they could mesh well with a person or company. Make yours engaging and user-friendly.
- Do Make Your Website Mobile-Friendly: Most truck drivers are going to be searching online using their phones. If your website and careers buttons are not mobile-friendly and make it hard for them to fill out applications or questionnaires they may just switch to the next one that is.
- Do List What Your Company Has to Offer the Driver and not just what the driver can do for you. In today’s job market many people are looking to be a part of something, not just go to work. Show that you will value them as an employee and what kind of wellness benefits or flexible hometime you can offer.
- Do Visit College Campuses and Job Fairs to Recruit New Drivers. While some may shy away from hiring newly CDL-licensed drivers you can see this as an opportunity to train someone in the exact ways you would like to see them go. Sometimes if a driver has been on the road for a long time they can be stuck in their ways and not be open to learning the new technology or blending with your company’s culture. While this may take more investment up-front with training it could pay dividends if the driver feels loyal to your company for giving them a shot when other companies wouldn’t.
- Do Offer Referral Incentives. Sometimes old-fashioned word of mouth is still the best way to find great drivers. This can be in the form of a bonus after a driver stays for a certain amount of time for both the driver that submitted the referral and the one that was hired or maybe even extra vacation days or healthcare benefits. Knowing they each have something on the line can help make sure you get only the best drivers referred.
Some of the Don’ts In Truck Driver Recruiting
- Don’t Overpromise and then Underdeliver. The trucking industry as it stands today is a driver’s market. This means if you sell them a bunch of bologna just to get them hired and then a month or so in they realize it wasn’t legit they can pack up their bag and have another driving job within the same day. Be honest about the expectations you have for them as a driver as well as what they can expect from you as a company. Be open to understanding if they have a family at home they need to be able to get back in for or if they are a single person wanting to be on the road more frequently to cash in on a higher paycheck.
- Don’t Just Hire Anybody. If you are in a crunch and have more freight than drivers to deliver it can be very tempting to hire the next person that walks in with a CDL. There are so many ways this can go wrong. Not only could it end up being a disaster as far as personality or culture differences, but it could also end up costing you your CSA score and good insurance rates if you hire someone who isn’t responsible for your equipment. Not every driver is going to be a good match with every single company. Taking the time to hire the correct driver is better than going through seven bad ones.
- Don’t Be Close-Minded. While many people picture truck drivers as being guys, women have recently started taking up around 10% of the truck driving workforce and that number continues to grow each year. This is a part of the recruiting that you want to consider as more and more women get into the industry.
- Don’t Take too Long to Respond. If a driver fills out an application on your website and it takes you too long to get back to them, they may already be hired by another company. Good drivers will not spend a lot of time waiting for feedback. They know their worth and another company could take advantage of you dropping the ball.
The most important step in the recruiting process of a truck driver is to give yourself as many avenues as possible for quality drivers to find you and then respond quickly to them when they reach out. Meet them where they are and use the tools available to communicate with them and answer any questions they may have. In today’s world where everything is a click away, it’s important that you use these tools to your advantage to find quality drivers for your tractors.
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