Could an Overhauled Pay System Reduce the Driver Shortage?
The trucking industry needs new talent. This has been true for years, as veteran drivers enter retirement and the current state of things isn’t exactly bringing in waves of new hires.
Trucking is still a very popular occupation in the US, but the demands of the freight industry are growing quickly. Carriers have tried new strategies for filling the gap, as data from industry experts suggests that over 200,000 positions need filled within the next three years.
One of the biggest reasons drivers are putting the brakes on their careers in the freight industry is because of lackluster pay. Even some of the bigger carriers out there have been slow to raise wages over the past few decades, even as the cost of living has increased.
Drivers are usually paid by the mile, but this can make things a little unfair at times. Drivers who get held up in traffic or experience delays upon delivering a shipment will not receive any extra compensation in most cases. However, some companies claim they’ve found a more effective way to pay drivers – by the hour.
The thought of hourly pay for truck drivers was out of the question years ago, as carriers saw it as a sure way to lose money. Given that the aforementioned delays that could occur, carriers feared that the arrangement would lead to them taking a big loss.
However, telematics technology has presented a possible solution to this problem. With modern GPS tracking solutions, carriers can track their vehicles whenever they’re on the roads. If carriers can monitor their freight, they have less of a reason to be concerned about the hourly model.
Some believe this would offer a net benefit for truckers, giving them more money and better overall compensation for their time. An improved pay system could be the big change the freight industry needs to bring hiring and retention numbers back up.
A larger staff of dependable drivers could help struggling carriers adjust to new demands, allowing the industry to adjust to changes quickly. If drivers see a better way to making a living in trucking, they’ll think twice about considering another line of work.