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Trucking Jobs Study Finds Concerning Results

A survey conducted by the Conversion Interactive Agency and People Data Analytics found that since fall 2022, the number of people seeking truck driver jobs has decreased.

The number of trucking job seekers has gone down 6% from Fall 2022 and about 3% from Spring 2022.

Of those surveyed, 33.8% of drivers said they are currently looking for trucking jobs. This number is the lowest since Conversion and PDA began asking the question in Spring 2021.

Since Spring of 2021, Conversion and PDA have consistently recorded that at least one-third of drivers have expressed interest in finding other trucking jobs.

According to the news release, 11,141 surveys were sent out and 1,621 responses were received.

The Spring 2023 Driver Survey showed that less than half of the drivers surveyed are not actively looking for a new driving job.

However, it’s important to note that the number of drivers looking for new work has decreased from 40% in Fall 2022 to 33.8%, the lowest rate since Conversion and PDA began asking the question.

“Also notable, of the drivers surveyed, more than 30% prefer hearing back from a carrier within 12 hours of submitting a short form or application, while more than half prefer a response within 24 hours,” the news release stated.

“The results of the Spring 2023 Driver Survey demonstrate a continued trend we’ve seen where a majority of drivers are not actively seeking new driving jobs,” said Kelley Walkup, president and CEO of Conversion Interactive Agency.

“This builds the case for carriers to invest even more in their employer brand now, so when drivers are actively making decisions related to driving for a new carrier, brand preference has already been established.”

45% of drivers have expressed uncertainty in today’s freight market, which makes it increasingly more difficult for them to get the miles needed for them to earn sufficient wages.

Something carriers can do to reassure their drivers (and recruit new truck drivers) is highlight your company’s consistent freight and miles in your job listings.

“This recent survey underscores the challenges facing drivers today, with half experiencing a drop in pay over the past six months,” said Scott Dismuke, vice president of operations at PDA. 

“As the survey shows, predictable pay is a top priority for drivers seeking new employment opportunities. The freight recession has also had a significant impact on driver miles, with half of the surveyed drivers reporting decreased or fluctuating miles since last fall. This slowdown can be particularly challenging for drivers who entered the industry during the peak of COVID-19 freight, as they have only ever known a steady freight market. Proactive communication is essential to support all drivers through any economic situation.”

The Spring 2023 Survey also explored drivers’ preferences regarding hiring events when looking for new trucking jobs. 

“A significant majority of drivers, nearly 70%, expressed a preference for attending both in-person and virtual events,” the news release noted. “This finding suggests that carriers can derive benefits from virtual events, which demand minimal investment while delivering timely and qualified leads.”

Additionally, the news release states that “It is noteworthy that events remain one of the most effective methods for attracting drivers, yet many carriers are not fully capitalizing on the latest technologies and offerings available to them.”

Kelley Walkup, president and CEO of Conversion Interactive Agency commented on this finding, stating, “Events are one of the most effective ways to attract drivers, and yet many fleets are still underutilizing them as a recruitment marketing strategy. In today’s driver market, it’s critical for carriers to use every tool available to attract top talent, including in-person and virtual events.”

Both Dismuke and Walkup agree that carriers should be focused on truck driver recruitment and retention.

“To achieve this, carriers should also stay ahead of the curve by implementing driver-centric policies, tools, and addressing driver feedback to keep them satisfied in an ever-changing economy,” the news release stated.

“Prioritizing driver retention and recruitment creates a stable and productive workforce and enhances overall efficiency and profitability, which is essential in the highly competitive trucking industry.”

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