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How to Recruit and Retain Drivers in the Logistics Industry

Published: April 12, 2019

Australia’s current truck driver shortage has prompted a number of businesses to review employee benefits offered to drivers in order to keep up with the competition induced by some private fleets, who might offer attractive rewards or promise a healthy work-life balance.

Some of the key factors behind the recent shortage of drivers include, stringent demands for qualifications, strict regulations, technological reforms, and competition from private fleets. While it has always been vital to offer competitive employee benefits, it has now become highly imperative considering the current environment and the trends driving change in the logistics industry.

Top Tips for the Highly Competitive Driver Hiring Task

The scarcity of drivers has transformed a previously challenging job of hiring drivers into a more competitive task. Recruitment practices have drastically transformed in comparison to those being followed a few years ago. The expectations of drivers have also evolved. For example, some drivers are now attracted to roles offering a healthy work-life balance; work-life balance is one of the top 3 key drivers of attraction for job candidates in the Australian transport and logistics sector. Becoming a successful logistics business essentially requires a well-defined model for recruiting drivers. This may include identification of objectives, having the appropriate systems and a well-trained recruitment team who is sensitive to drivers’ needs, in particular, generation X and Y.

Furthermore, it pays to monitor your competitors’ hiring strategies and consistently improve processes to reflect industry best practice. The driver hiring process of a logistics business can have a major impact on the success of the business as a whole. Investing in the right people and resources when recruiting drivers can become a source of sustainable competitive advantage.

Recruiting the Right Driver Assures Retention Along with Safety and Productivity

At this point, it is important to highlight that in some cases a driver can be the only person in a logistics business who brings in the revenue; however, sometimes these individuals are not being compensated appropriately for their efforts. Drivers are often forced to spend a great deal of time away from their families and in some cases management can be unsupportive.

Low salaries are not the only issue impacting upon driver turnover and retention.  Poor processes and policies are also key factors resulting in low driver retention. Logistics businesses can improve driver retention rates by providing drivers with what has been promised, ensuring that recruiters are well aware of what they are offering, valuing each procedure, conducting perception surveys including both drivers and non-drivers, and finally by implementing adequate training programs.

Legal Issues Facing Recruiters in the Logistics Industry

There is a number of legal issues that arise in the process of seeking, interviewing and selecting candidates for a position in the logistics sector.  In order to fulfil your obligations as an employer according to the laws and regulations relevant to the logistics industry your recruiters will need to stay up-to-date with legal issues. Your team may also need to implement new and up-to-date policies, review and update job descriptions, perform audits and optimise recruitment processes. Adequate and up-to-date documentation such as a written contract between the independent contractor and the logistics business which has been reviewed by an employment lawyer can further assist in mitigating the risk of legal issues.

How Technology like Precom Can Help

New technology like PocketMobile’s Precom software provides opportunities to significantly change the scope of the work of drivers in the heavy vehicle industry. Intelligent mobile tools make it possible to remove certain tasks while adding others, and make many tasks more efficient. Such tools can, for example, help optimise loading, give routing instructions and facilitate communication with colleagues, addressees, and management. While intelligent software  like Precom takes care of these tasks, additional new tasks can be introduced – these could include conducting surveys, reporting and taking doorstep payment.

PreCom is a powerful, extendable and configurable software tool that is designed for business-critical work. This intelligent software solution is extensively used by logistic service providers, postal organisations and other last-mile delivery operations. Using the Precom mobility platform simplifies work and hiring procedures (making it possible to implement tools such as mobile-guided workflows), reduces administration, facilitates on-boarding and training, increases flexibility, boosts productivity and optimises both the customer and employee experience.

PocketMobile, a leading provider of mobility solutions, is now part of the Trimble Transportation Mobility division of Trimble’s Transportation segment.

Discover PocketMobile’s Precom Platform along with the range of technologies and transportation solutions from Trimble Transportation at stand 250 in the Plaza at the Brisbane Truck Show.

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