Among the most common search terms used to find this blog site are “incentives”; “bonus” and “rewards”. There is, evidently, a lot of interest among fleets to tie safety performance (and tenure) to incentive or reward programs.
While we’ve offered articles on those topics in the past (“Driver Recruitment and Retention: A Winning Combination” for example, or just use our search function at this site if you’re curious about other articles), we figured it was time for another update.
Recently, Heavy Duty Trucking published an article titled “Finding and Keeping Driver With The One-Two Punch: Pay & Respect” (Click HERE to see the entire article). While their article was more concerned about recruiting and retention than safety, some of the themes and advice could apply to safety issues as well.
A couple of interesting quotes from the article include:
- Large truckload carriers have seen their turnover rate hold above 90% for eight quarters in a row, according to the latest figures from the American Trucking Associations.
- Generally drivers cite two main broad reasons for jumping from one company to another: pay and respect. And the same factors that can keep drivers with your company can also help attract new drivers to your company – especially when you consider the importance of word-of-mouth and referrals.
- More companies are avoiding across-the-board mileage pay increases in favor of various incentive packages, bonuses and incentives that reward the best performers.
- Fuel economy is a major driver of these types of programs. But perhaps just as important is safety and compliance.
- “Driver retention comes down to having quality relationships with your drivers,” says Andrew Winkler, director of operations at Nebraska-based Grand Island Express, which had a driver turnover rate in 2013 of 36%. “Happy drivers don’t leave good carriers. Treat them with the respect they deserve…and that starts at the top. Our president insists on meeting face to face with each new driver or orientation class.”