How we addressed the CDL driver shortage in the consumer goods & retail industry

How we addressed the CDL driver shortage in the consumer goods & retail industry


Combating a common skills shortage

A worker shortage for Commercial (CDL) Truck Drivers is not a new issue but the global trend continues to increase at rapid rates.

“According the American Trucking Association, the US is “facing a record shortage with an estimated 50,000 more drivers needed to meet demand.  By 2026, the shortage is expected to triple.”

In all other developed and emerging economies, the need for road freight continues to escalate but the supply of workers is simply not available.

Seasoned drivers are retiring, younger generations are not interested in driver careers, working conditions are undesirable and the lifestyle is sedentary.

This line of work is highly regulated and can require many levels of qualifications and certifications.

The challenge

Attracting and recruiting talent in a tight market

The shortage of CDL drivers means a number of things for Consumer Product organisations, as well as consumers themselves.

Organisations cannot deliver fast enough to match digital purchasing, meaning less volume in the market and increased prices for consumers.

Automation and self-driving trucks are being explored, but this development is still many years to decades away and it is still unknown if it will fully eliminate the driver role or possibly just shift the role’s core responsibilities.

While the industry continues research and development for the future, the immediate need for CDL drivers remains paramount.

With such a tight market, our teams put forth a focus on talent attraction and recruiting retainment.

How we helped

Recruitment adjustments to meet the needs of the driver

To attract talent, our teams have set up customer website landing pages specifically for truck drivers, highlighting Employee Value Propositions (EVP) and all pertinent pay, bonus, and benefit information.

The site is also used to showcase open roles, markets, provide employee video testimonials and real life job previews.

Knowing that drivers don’t have much downtime or consistent access to computers, the sites are mobile-friendly and have a streamlined and easy form for drivers to complete during their short driving breaks.

To attract younger generations, our teams look beyond just salary and benefits as EVP.

Millennials are interested in experiences and it’s important to frame driving careers in a new perspective such as:

  • Allowing for a different work/life balance with longer work periods followed by extended time off
  • An opportunity to travel and experience different parts of the country.
  • New and exciting vehicle technology.

We promoted roles in social media groups specific for the trucking industry and gained great traction for our customers.

Separate teams and recruiting processes specific to driving roles were created in each programme, equipped with a dedicated team member from start to finish, as opposed to multiple process owners.

Once candidate traffic is driven to the landing page and the information form completed, the driver receives a follow up call immediately.

Additional touchpoints were added to ensure the candidate continues quickly through the process.

Where automation is used for contact in other groups, our teams have found consistent phone calls were actually more successful and relevant to this audience.

The teams coupled this with text notifications for interview reminders and on-boarding documents.

Our teams leveraged market data to support pay rate increases and sign-on bonuses per location, sourcing innovations, advertising recommendations, and competitor benchmarking analysis.

In one programme, the team improved process efficiencies with significant cost savings and recommended on-package job advertisements and targeted campaigns for driving roles with a portion of the savings.


Shared best practices for an optimised target operating model

Since implementing best practices with our RPO programmes, our customers have seen improvements throughout the full lifecycle including increased:

  • Number of candidates
  • Candidate to interview and interview to hire
  • Better time to fill
  • Overall customer satisfaction

One customer – the global leader in food and beverage products – has seen an increase in their US applicant pool by 31% in only 60 days from targeted advertising campaigns.

The pipeline is stronger than ever before with seasoned drivers.

We know this skill scarcity will continue so our best practices model is always evolving.

We accomplish this through collaboration sessions, data, and market intelligence analysis, and leveraging our best-in-class RPO Target Operating Model.

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