PETERSBURG, Fla. — An increased demand for shipping, along with an overall national shortage of long-haul drivers, is sparking a significant increase in trucker compensation.
In the U.S., approximately 72.5% of the nation’s freight weight is moved by truck.
Ecommerce continues to boom. In the U.S., the total revenue from retail e-commerce for 2021 was estimated at approximately $768 billion—and it is expected to reach $1.3 trillion by 2025.
According to employment agency ZipRecruiter, in Georgia, the average truck driver salary is $46,988, which ranks the Peach State as 11th in the nation in truck driver salary.
Georgia’s average salary is just $1,407 lower than the national average.
“Better pay for drivers stems from increased awareness of the motor freight industry, and of trucking as a vital profession,” Brad Ball, president of Roadmaster Drivers School said.
A new training center in Conley, Georgia, will help bring new workers to a shorthanded industry, and a new opportunity for people who need good jobs.
Conley, located about 20 minutes south of Atlanta, is a major hub for the trucking industry; dozens of trucking companies large and small have terminals or other facilities in or near Conley.
This, says Ball, is due not only to Conley’s proximity to Atlanta, the number-one freight market in the country but to its presence in what is known as “Freight Alley,” a network of highways that roughly defines freight traffic moving throughout the southeastern U.S.
Like the rest of the country, Ball notes, Georgia needs truck drivers.
Georgians also need gainful employment with a future and trucking, says Ball, is one of the increasingly better-paid professions open to non-college graduates.
It is also, he points out, despite its somewhat stereotyped image, welcoming to a broad and increasingly diverse range of applicants.
According to a recent American Trucking Associations survey, more than 40% of truck drivers are now minorities and a rapidly increasing number are women.
Most importantly, Ball adds, there is no wage gap tied to race or gender in trucking.
“Everyone is paid by the mile,” he said.
The training involved in learning to handle a truck and qualify for a commercial driver’s license is relatively brief, four to five weeks from beginning to end. While the training is not inexpensive, Ball notes that the demand for new drivers is such that many trucking firms will pay for a new employee to be trained, and in some cases will also pay a salary during the training period.
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.