Addressing the Driver Shortage

With millions of miles of roads, millions of tonnes of freight, and the economy in a slow recovery, one might think that there would be plenty of truck drivers available for work. This is definitely not the case, and everyone, even consumers, is feeling the pinch.

Difficulty in driver recruitment is being seen from coast to coast.  It is estimated by the Department of Labor that there is about a 100,000 driver shortage across the US.  Hundreds of jobs are going unfilled, month after month.

Several factors are influencing the shortage:

  • Regulations on health and safety are pushing many drivers out of the industry
  • CSA Scores (Compliance, Safety, and Accountability)
  • Interstate commerce laws and regulations on age
  • Cost of obtaining CDL
  • Difficult lifestyle

The Bad News

It is estimated that with the baby boomers retiring at an alarming rate, the driver shortage could reach 250,000 in the next 3 to 5 years.  Compound this with the fact that demand could increase more dramatically with a strengthening economy, it could spell disaster for an already stressed industry.

The Good News

All of these factors are driving up the pay rates for current drivers.  Salaries for drivers are up about 5% over the past 2-3 years; more growth is expected to keep driver retention rates high.  Also, many organizations are working with legislators and state agencies to provide reduced cost or even free training programs to those interested in entering the driving profession.

As an employer, what are you doing to stem the rising tide of the driver shortage?  We would love to hear your input.

Road Dog Drivers, a driver leasing company, provides the right driver at the right time. NOW!