Driver hiring and retention is a year-long migraine for trucking companies. It’s also an important part of your safety plan. With the spike of holiday shipping approaching, and candidate pools pinched by the realities of COVID-19, hiring managers are hard-pressed to keep their fleets fully staffed. Carriers don’t feel they have the option of turning away applicants, even if those applicants aren’t in it for the long haul. There are also safety concerns to take into account.

hiringThere are steps you can take to ensure you’re hiring the best candidates. Learn from two experts in the field: Kelly Anderson, President of Kelly Anderson Group, and Mark Tinney, President of JOBehaviors. 


1. Respond to lead
– One of the leading reasons drivers tell us they did not go to work for a contractor is “no one responded.”

    A. If an applicant calls you’ve got to have someone to answer the phone. More than 50% of callers hang up when they get voicemail.

    B. If the applicant submits an online inquiry you are 90% more likely to recruit the driver if you respond within five minutes.

2. Conversational recruiting technique, not interrogation – Many people are demanding and demeaning to applicants. People get committed to people not to companies. Have a conversation with the applicant wherein you get to know their qualifications and needs, and you share your employment benefits as it relates to meeting their needs.

3. Show acceptance – If based on the conversation you feel the applicant would be a good fit with your company, then be the first to show acceptance. Here’s an example of a pseudo offer of employment – “John, based on what I see here I don’t know why we can’t take this to the next level.”

4. Set a plan of action – Once the applicant is engaged in moving forward with the hiring process based on their reaction to the offer you’ve made above, set a plan of action which outlines the steps that will be taken to get them ready to start on a specific date. Setting the target start date and the steps to complete along the way keeps the applicant engaged with you through the process. This is especially important if you have a lengthy qualification process. Every time you talk with the applicant, outline what you will do and what they need to do between now and the next time you talk. Set a specific time for the next conversation.

5. Hire people based on their behavior, not just qualifications – Qualifications meet the legal and regulatory requirements of the job. Behavior determines the outcome of the job that is done. Identify the behavioral characteristics of you best employees and hire people that share those characteristics. JOBehaviors has a great solution for this need.

 

What makes JOBehaviors’ process different?

The traditional hiring process verifies technical skills but does very little in determining the quality and dependability of a driver. While hiring managers perform due diligence, reviewing applications, conducting interviews, and administering background checks, the reality is none of the information available provides certainty of how the applicant will act unsupervised.

Hiring managers are under enormous pressure to keep up with the demand for drivers. Even if they understand the true cost of a bad hire, what’s the alternative?

In an ideal world, carriers could choose their drivers from a pool of qualified drivers and altogether avoid applicants who will have a negative impact on day-to-day operations and the bottom line.

A Proven, Predictive Approach

JOBehaviors, a member of Protective’s Vendor Referral Network, helps carriers do exactly that with a predictive assessment. It’s based on an extensive analysis of the behaviors that determine success as a specific type of driver (Delivery, Class-A CDL, Motorcoach and School Bus Driver) as well as a Warehouse Manager, Freight Handler and Diesel Technician. Plus, applicants cannot pass by saying what they think hiring managers want to hear, as the assessment controls for social desirability (all options appear equally positive).

Don’t Miss the Best, Avoid the Worst

Each applicant is awarded a rating of one through five stars, making it easy for hiring managers to prioritize candidates based on predictive quality. Just as importantly, it calls out the high-risk applicants, who are very likely to drain carrier service’s resources and quit their jobs.

JOBehaviors is not the typical pass-or-fail screening. Hiring managers can eliminate poor-quality drivers and take a nuanced approach to the pool of qualified drivers. This way, they can still meet their quantitative hiring goals, while improving the overall quality of employees.

Mark Tinney shared that carriers are increasingly using the service to recruit new CDL graduates. They hiring for behaviors and training for skills. One company has even reported that the average driver scorecard for new drivers is better than that of the legacy drivers!

 

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  • Driver Recruitment