As it turns out, it doesn’t look much like a crisis at all. These days, candidates have the leverage to walk away from a job opportunity if the prospective employer doesn’t yield to their every whim—because there’s always another recruiter down the road willing to make a better offer. And I mean “down the road” literally: drivers say that recruiters knock on their doors at rest stops, and sometimes even jump in the cab while the vehicle is idling.
In a fascinating and somewhat hilarious article titled “What it’s like to be a truck driver when suddenly everyone wants to hire you?”, LinkedIn managing editor Chip Cutter reports:
Recruiters are ‘running around like Amway salesmen,’ said Rand Stapleton, a 52-year-old driver based in Burlington, Ontario, who mostly transports Voortman Cookies and grass seed for Appleby Transportation. He receives at least two messages a week, asking him to consider leaving.
Cutter’s article profiles a an out-of-work driver named Bob Stanton, as Stanton makes his way around a trucking show, wielding his “newfound power” as a driver in a competitive recruitment market:
No matter what Stanton demanded, recruiters from Walmart and a slew of other companies were eager to please. They signed off on no trucks over four years old; no refrigerated trucks; a transponder so Stanton could bypass highway weigh stations; and minimum pay of $1,000 a week. They didn’t even flinch when Stanton refused to drive a Kenworth T680 because the steering wheel rides too snug on his belly. ‘I’m a BUFF — a big, ugly, fat, effer,’ he explained to one recruiter, blurring an expletive.
Stanton may sound bold, even brazen, but his approach pays off: he leaves the show evaluating 7 different job offers, one of which includes a $10,000 signing bonus. The moral of the story? Many carriers will take help anywhere they can get it—even from a foul-mouthed BUFF. As long as he has clean driving record, well, that effer has a job.
Of course, the shrinking talent pool is just one factor in the shortage. Don’t let your onboarding and compliance training processes turn away your hard-earned drivers. While we can’t necessarily help you attract more Bob Stantons (Bobs Stanton?), Compli’s trucking compliance platform can help you retain your most valuable asset.