Jeremy Reymer, CEO and founder of DriverReach, is joined on this episode of Taking The Hire Road by one of his best friends in the industry, Leah Shaver, president and CEO of the National Transportation Institute. NTI is known as the trucking industry’s principal authority on driver pay data and trends. 

NTI works to provide carriers with actionable data and benchmarking studies, enabling them to make informed decisions about their own compensation packages and understand where the driver market may be headed in the future. 

“We show up to work every day to deliver opportunities for fleets to grow, to attract additional workers and expand in the market with an appropriately compensated, engaged and retained workforce,” Shaver said.

While NTI engages primarily with carriers, Shaver does not overlook the importance of individual driver feedback when it comes to measuring — and improving — the trucking industry. 

“Hearing the driver’s perspective is so important,” Shaver said. “Ultimately, if the issue is important to the driver, it should be important to the company and dictate the research we do here at NTI.”

Drivers are the backbone of the industry, and understanding how they are being affected by the current freight recession is crucial for carriers looking to recruit and retain talent today.

Despite the freight recession and wider economic downturn, Shaver noted that company drivers are still feeling optimistic about both their pay and their jobs overall. This is likely because competition for drivers — especially experienced professionals with safe driving records — is still strong throughout the trucking industry. 

In order to recruit and retain this type of in-demand talent during tough economic times, Shaver suggests carriers focus on engaging drivers in areas they can control — including safety, fuel economy and personal wellness — that also impact their paychecks. 

This approach allows top-notch drivers to benefit from performance-related incentives, which continue to fuel that sense of optimism and increase retention rates. 

While the majority of company drivers are feeling positive, the same cannot be said for owner-operators. Many independent contractors operate primarily off load boards, which means they feel the full extent of the down market. 

For many owner-operators, revenue is down and equipment costs are up. One way for them to weather the recession is to consider becoming company drivers, providing security for themselves and a new crop of experienced drivers for carriers. 

“There is a lot of opportunity to recruit folks who are not getting the freight they need or who don’t have contract freight, specifically,” Shaver said.

Click here to learn more about NTI.

More from Taking The Hire Road:

Trailblazing trucking: Gregg Troian’s progressive pursuit of innovation

Supercharging driver coaching with insights powered by machine learning 

Growing with Groendyke: Gaining ground in driver recruitment

The post Who’s the champion for drivers in your fleet? – Taking The Hire Road appeared first on FreightWaves.

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