It feels good to be in demand, and there’s hardly a profession in greater demand today than the truck driver.
The American Trucking Association (ATA) estimates that the nationwide truck driver shortage around 50,000 empty seats, and expects that to increase to 174,000 open driver positions by 2026. It’s a problem hitting every goods provider, and the wood products industry is no exception. As the Hardwood Distributors Association told Woodworking Network, some wood products companies see the driver shortage as being directly responsible for their own fourth-quarter shortages.
Of course, the result is that there is perhaps no more profitable time to get into the trucking industry. An ATA survey of more than 100,000 drivers shows that fleets are reacting to the tight market for drivers by boosting pay, improving benefit packages and offering other enticements to recruit and retain safe and experienced drivers.
Timber Products’ TP Trucking division is working hard to stand out from the pack, going beyond great benefits like 401(k) matching, and medical insurance.
But the organization goes much further to take care of its drivers. In 2017, the organization was awarded the Truckload Award from the Oregon Trucking Association for its commitment to safety. TP Trucking works with drivers on route options to accommodate family schedules. In fact, TP Trucking has drivers on staff who use the additional bunk in their Kenworth T680 to bring the spouse or kid along for the ride.
If you know trucks, you know the Kenworth T680 is known as “The driver’s truck.” Based on recommendations from staff drivers and technicians, TP Trucking has updated its fleet to include more than 100 of these comfortable and powerful machines. This vehicle puts comfort at a priority, with 72-inch sleepers and a wide range of amenities.
Perhaps the most distinctive edge that TP Trucking offers is that it balances the welcoming feel of a small company with the benefits of a large parent company. And we see these benefits reflected in driver loyalty. While the national turnover rate for drivers is about 96 percent, TP Trucking sees roughly 16 percent turnover.
Those benefits come with tough expectations. Drivers must be older than 23, preferably with a minimum of two years of over the road experience. When not actively hiring, TP Trucking keeps applications on file. Candidates are invited to an in-person interview, then asked to pass a driving test. If hired, drivers start their two-week orientation, putting them on the road to being part of the TP Trucking team.
Interested? Apply and drive with us today!