What do you need to do your job? Effective, compatible programs and applications. Clear, reliable communication channels. And either a comfortable office or flexible mobile tools for working remotely. Sounds reasonable, right? But if your company doesn’t provide what you need, other benefits may not be enough reason to stay, especially long term.
Same goes for commercial truck drivers. With driver shortages at the highest levels the American Trucking Association (ATA) has seen to date, every strategy for driver retention needs to be on the table—including investing in their professional experience.
Lighten your drivers’ mobile load.
Carriers and commercial drivers have been under immense pressure. While other priorities have consumed your focus, you may not have had the resources or time to invest in driver tools. But imagine traveling for a high-pressure job carrying a heavy, basic laptop loaded with incompatible programs. Or spending valuable time shuffling—and trying not to lose—physical paperwork.
Commercial drivers are professionals, whose office is behind the wheel. Investing in their job satisfaction and success will reflect in your driver retention rate for one simple reason: People prefer working for a company that values them.
Evaluate your fleet’s driver tools for opportunities to make their job easier and more efficient.
- Outfit each driver with a rugged, lightweight tablet built to go where they go.
- Load each tablet with vetted, proven, compatible mobile apps.
- Streamline core tasks and digitize paper-based processes.
- Unify their workflow onto one app, with one user experience and one sign-on.
- Help them avoid HoS violations by providing FMCSA compliant ELDs.
- Integrate electronic verified inspection reporting and ELD compliance with your current systems and platforms.
As you evaluate your fleet’s mobile ecosystem, ask drivers for their feedback. Explore how you can ease their pain points with modern mobile tools. Equip your drivers based on their real-world needs and pain points, and your driver retention rate will go up—as will the level of trust between drivers and their managers.
Unify their driver workflow, inside and outside the cab.
The TMS is the heart of operations. But when drivers have to use numerous, disparate tools to interact with the TMS, it slows down everyone and everything. As you enhance your drivers’ experience with a more modern mobile ecosystem, unify their workflow onto a single app they can access in and out of the truck cab.
Streamline their experience without changing your TMS. Look for a customizable driver workflow solution that integrates with virtually any TMS to simplify load and delivery operations. Route planning, messages, navigation, parking—unified trip management, all on their tablet or smartphone. Consider it their command center.
|Multi-app driver workflow||Unified driver workflow|
|Multiple tools, interfaces and sign-on credentials||One app, user interface and sign-on|
|Steeper learning curve for onboarding||One set of features to learn|
|Inefficient interaction with TMS for essential information and operations||Faster, easier interaction with TMS for essential information and operations|
|Unreliable communication with back office||Clear, reliable communication with back office|
|No ELD integration||ELD integration to avoid HoS violations|
|Inefficient trip planning, truck routing, guidance, navigation and daily tasks||Safe, efficient and flexible trip planning, truck routing, guidance, navigation and daily tasks|
|More admin time, less drive time||Drivers perform less admin and data entry on their in-cab tablet and smartphone|
With overall driver demographics becoming younger, the learning curve to perform essential job functions grows steeper. A unified driver workflow optimizes their daily tasks to help offset any lack in experience and general knowledge they may have upon entering the industry.
Care for the truck to show care for its driver.
No driver wants to drive a truck that keeps breaking down by the roadside. Prioritizing fleet health to keep each vehicle reliable and safe to operate demonstrates your commitment to driver safety and success as well as your company’s growth.
|Poorly maintained vehicles||Well-maintained vehicles|
|Leave drivers stranded, sometimes in unsafe conditions or locations||Get drivers there safely and more quickly|
|Eat at drivetime, schedules and profits||Maintain schedules and boost customer satisfaction|
|Cause accidents and leave drivers vulnerable to civil lawsuits||Prevent accidents and protect everyone on the road|
|Could be a red flag about a carrier’s priorities||Show your company’s commitment to safety, reliability and profitability|
- Remote diagnostics Monitor your entire fleet’s health in detail through a central, online smart fleet management platform.
- Truly verified pre- and post-trip inspections Catch small issues before they become critical withelectronically verified inspection reporting.
- Predictive maintenance Predict and prevent downstream issues with a modern predictive maintenance platform for all makes, models and major components.
- Over-the-air engine updates Keep engines up to date wherever the truck travels by authorizing appropriate personnel to update Cummins engines over the air, anytime, anywhere—using a mobile app.
You don’t need to keep each driver behind the wheel of the newest make and model. But if you want to keep drivers period, prioritize maintaining fleet health to keep them on the road, not on the roadside. For more on maintaining optimal fleet health, download our complimentary white paper, Rethink your shop, keep your fleet healthy.
Driving higher retention rates pays for itself.
Your company benefits, too—and not just in terms of higher driver retention. Hiring new drivers is expensive. Sign-on bonuses alone range from $2,000 to $10,000 for each new driver, and those keep increasing. Then add the time and expense for recruiting, training and company onboarding to get them in the door and hauling loads. Many small and medium-sized carriers have increased driver pay by as much as 10 percent, adding to the overall cost of operations.
Everyone needs to earn a living, including your company. And investing in drivers’ job satisfaction can pay for itself.
- Modern driver tools and unified workflows translate into greater operational efficiency.
- More of your current talent pool stays on, avoiding the need to pay as much in recruiting, hiring admin and sign-on bonuses.
- A reputation as a quality carrier attracts experienced, quality drivers, who want to work for a professional fleet.
- Healthier vehicles have a lower TCO and lower expenses related to breakdowns and critical repairs.
Enhance your retention strategy, enhance your retention rates.
According to the American Transportation Research Institute’s (ATRI) Critical Issues in Trucking for 2020 study, driver retention remains one of trucking’s top concerns—for the fourth consecutive year.
Retaining drivers is an ongoing issue for commercial fleets, especially as the economy changes and carriers feel the pressure to deliver more goods, on time. Provide the right mobile tools and a safe, reliable vehicle encourages them to stay longer instead of moving to a carrier that won’t.
Read our complimentary white paper, Use smart fleet technology to retain your drivers, for more on increasing your fleet’s driver retention through:
- rewarding high performers based on objective data and metrics
- prioritizing safety by building an effective fleetwide program
- helping drivers avoid violations with a quality, proven ELD solution
- keeping vehicles and fleet personnel healthy with contactless, over-the-air Cummins engine updates
When you’re done, contact us to speak with a specialist. We know the technologies, driver tools and fleet health solutions for greater efficiency and driver satisfaction.