Conversion Interactive Agency and PDA surveyed professional truck drivers on a variety of driver concerns to gather insights about topics ranging from the equipment and parts shortage, truck parking, what they are looking for in job descriptions and what online content is influencing their job search.
For the second year, more than half of the surveyed drivers claim they are not currently looking for a new driving job. According to the survey, 37.4% said they are currently looking for a job —up almost 3% from November 2021, when 34.6% of drivers indicated they were looking for a job.
“This is a pivotal moment for the trucking industry. We are living in the digital age of driver recruiting and carriers that have not adopted innovative technologies are going to fall behind,” said Kelley Walkup, president and CEO of Conversion Interactive Agency. “Truck drivers are creating online communities and basing their career choices on the reviews of other drivers. They are using social and digital media to look for new driving jobs, and the technology is constantly evolving.”
In addition, 71.6% of drivers surveyed said the most influential factor when choosing a carrier to drive for is online reviews from other drivers. Monitoring online reviews is becoming a critical piece of driver recruitment.
“Monitoring and responding to online driver reviews is essential to the success of any driver-recruiting effort,” Walkup said. “Articles, blogs and social media content are an underutilized strategy by carriers today. Drivers are consuming content online, so why shouldn’t it be about your carrier?”
While technology is rapidly becoming a crucial factor, there is still a strong desire for human interaction during the recruitment process. Almost 60% of drivers claim they prefer a phone call to electronic communication when communicating with driver recruiters during the recruiting process.
“Driving a truck can be a lonely operation, so it’s no surprise that drivers have a strong need for human interaction,” Walkup said. “However, employing advanced technology to nurture your leads can drive an increased amount of connection between your recruiters and prospective drivers.”
The driver survey data download includes information on a variety of factors impacting drivers today, including not only driver communication topics, but also other challenges facing the industry.
While the equipment shortage and parts supply chain issues continue to affect carriers, most drivers do not seem to be feeling the impact, with 55% of drivers saying the equipment/parts shortage is not affecting their job.
“While a majority of drivers do not seem to feel the effect of the equipment shortage, a significant number of drivers indicated the shortage is affecting their pay via a decrease in miles, as well as having to keep trucks longer,” said Scott Dismuke, vice president of operations for PDA.
“Aging fleets mean more maintenance; more maintenance means drivers are in the shop more frequently,” he continued. “If drivers are in the shop and not logging miles, their pay will suffer, so maintenance departments will be key to driver retention throughout the rest of the year.”
In the survey, drivers also weighed in on the parking shortage and how long it normally takes them to find parking. More than half of the drivers surveyed indicated it takes them 30 minutes or less to find parking, while 45% of the drivers said it takes more than thirty minutes to locate parking.
“While we clearly know from other data and surveys that parking is a problem, the results of this survey seem to indicate that drivers that don’t plan ahead are the ones that have the biggest issue finding parking,” Dismuke said.
“These results do show that drivers would appreciate some assistance with parking in the form of paying for parking or providing parking locations,” he continued. “When it comes to parking, carriers could do more to set their drivers up for success by offering additional training on trip planning.”
Driver retention continues to be a challenge for motor carriers, regardless of the economy.
“Driver retention is not easy and is really affected at the individual driver level,” Dismuke said. “Carriers need to know their data, know what their drivers are saying, and more importantly who is saying it. Carriers that can quickly identify and quickly intervene with drivers who are having issues will be at an advantage.”
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.