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Industry News

A Little Driver Recruiting Secret

Each day we get dozens of calls from recruiters and fleet managers asking what they can do to attract larger numbers of qualified drivers. Our response is always the same. The two single biggest factors in driver recruiting are:

1. Geography – where you are hiring at
2. Desirability – how desirable your position is in relation to others in the same market

For most recruiters geography is fixed and can’t be manipulated. That leaves the “desirability” aspect. No matter where your open driving job is located you are no doubt competing with other jobs and carriers for the best drivers; and as you know, the most desirable jobs always have the greatest numbers of applicants and hires.

The question is “What can you do to make your driver jobs more attractive?” Obviously, if your open driver job offers great pay and benefits you will likely be able to fill it more quickly. However, if you’re like most carriers, with limited resources to increase pay for prospective drivers, you will need to look elsewhere for ways to improve the appeal of your positions.

One area of opportunity that few carriers think to exploit is the notion of “predictability”. This may sound foreign to you but a few subtle changes can go a long way in making your positions more appealing. Certainly its great to put together flashy ads with eye-catching pictures of trucks and mountain scenery, but most drivers are sharp enough to see past the fancy ads and recognize a worthless opportunity for what it is. Instead, you will want to focus your creativity on the substance of your open job rather than the substance of your job-advertisement. After all, you can have a great advertising message and communicate it thoroughly to the masses, but as they say, “Even if you put lipstick on a pig, it’s still a pig.”

While many in the industry have accepted “quality of life” (QOL) as the Holy Grail of driver recruiting, few have been able to impact QOL enough to make their positions more desirable. Most of the typical enhancements miss the mark on what QOL truly means to a driver.

QOL is more than just comfy truck seats, or a computer application that shows families where dad’s truck is on a map, or saying that “You’re not just a number here.” Those things certainly help, but they fall short of QOL.

QOL begins with the security of knowing what to expect on a daily basis. Being able to predict with some degree of certainty in five crucial areas can significantly enhance the desirability of any driving job. These five areas are “when”, “where”, “what”, “how much”, and “how long”. This is a simple yet powerful concept. Companies that are able to address these questions adequately can greatly improve their ability to recruit qualified drivers. Let’s look at the five crucial areas;

– When? – When will I work? When does my day start? What days will I work?
– Where? – Where will I be most of the time?
– What? – What will I be doing, driving, sitting-waiting, loading/unloading etc…?
– How much? – How much will I make each day, week?
– How long? – How long will my shift/run/load last? How long before I’m done? How much downtime before the next shift/run/load?

Note that most local driving jobs are inherently better able to answer these questions than their long-haul counterparts, and as a result, they are typically more desirable and easier to fill.

Drivers, like everyone else, strive for stability and predictability in their lives. Like most of us, they have bills that need to be paid on a regular basis, doctor’s appointments to schedule, personal events they would like to attend, and the need for predictable downtime. Drivers want to be confident that they will be home for Aunt Sally’s birthday party next month, or to see their son play in the big game. Ask yourself whether or not you could ever consider a job that didn’t answer all of these questions precisely. Would you want to go home and tell your spouse that you are considering a job where you’re not sure how much money you will actually bring home, or how often you will be home? Could you be comfortable not knowing how frequently you might have idle or unpaid time?

A good starting point to offering better QOL comes through offering drivers greater predictability in their work-life. While we understand that shippers often make it challenging for carriers to plan, or offer, more predictable schedules, we have seen how a proactive campaign on the part carrier to create more structure can pay off over time, in a big way. From there, the driver can build in the aspects of life that ultimately bring him the feelings associated with QOL.

For most, driving is not a very attractive profession. However, for every job out there, there’s someone who thinks that it’s a perfect fit for him/her. You simply need to apply as much structure as possible to your jobs for them to compete more closely with other mainstream jobs. The old school thinking that the driver’s job “is what it is”, must go away.

Celebrating National Truck Driver Appreciation Week

Since 1998, each year during the third week of September Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) set  aside a week to thank and recognize all their professional drivers, also known as National Truck Driver Appreciation Week (NTDAW).

TCA’s chairman Robert Low expressed his concern about the growing health problems truck drivers face due to a sedentary lifestyle, such as diabetes, sleep apnea, obesity and high blood pressure.  Low not only wants this week to be about honoring and thanking our nation’s truck drivers but also wants it to be about awareness of drivers’ health. He is changing National Truck Driver Appreciation Week to National Truck Driver Appreciation and Wellness Week (NTDAWW).

During NTDAWW, trucking companies will be hosting events at truck stops throughout each state to honor drivers. Low asks that health awareness be incorporated into events.

TCA will also be hosting a “Ditch the Pack” event on September 20th, to encourage truckers to quit smoking for 24 hours. This is to raise awareness on the benefits of quitting and to show support for those who have chosen to start living the smoke free lifestyle.

Drivers who want to locate these events during NTDAWW can go to  You will also be able to see what type of events and activities are available at each location.

Increase in Outsourced Driver Recruitment Expected

Recession factors continued to slow the freight transportation industry throughout 2009, but many fleet operators have used the business downturn to rethink their driver recruitment strategies.

Spectrum Driver Recruiters, a specialist provider of Recruitment Processing Outsourcing to the transportation/logistics industry, is seeing an increasing demand high-efficiency services that will grow as freight tonnage increases as expected in 2010. The companies’ recent, pending contracts with large private corporations and commercial carriers indicate that the industry is gearing up for better days, according to Principal Ken Walker.

Many industry experts are predicting that the driver shortages of the past will soon return with much greater ferocity, as many drivers who have been unable to find work have abandoned the trade for other occupations. “Even with current lower levels of business and reduced demand for drivers, fleet operators have been realizing that they must deal with leaner times by identifying recruiting methods that are far more effective then those relied on during the past driver shortage,” said Walker. “As freight tonnage goes back up, it will take much longer for the number of available drivers to rise and get to the point where we reach the previous ’shortage’ levels of the past.”

Spectrum uses proprietary advertising techniques coupled with their own national database of over 340,000 commercial truck drivers to efficiently identify and qualify higher numbers of “right-fit” candidates for consideration, based on the client’s specific needs.  Spectrum handles background checks and certifications, and can assume full responsibility for strategy, services and compliance, providing turnkey service if desired.

Outsourced recruitment processing has proven to be highly beneficial when the fleet operator’s recruiting function serves multiple locations (typically with inconsistent recruiting strategies), when the transportation function relies on a generalist HR department, or when the company has limited in-house resources.

“Fleet operators have a large pool of experienced drivers to tap into right now, but it appears that a return to the days of driver shortages and retention problems are not far off,” Walker added. American Trucking Association (ATA) demographic studies have shown that key age groups for drivers are shrinking, causing the potential for shortages that will increase the time and cost of finding drivers.

Spectrum Driver Recruiters’ clients include small fleet owners, large commercial carriers and Fortune 50 companies. An Spectrum-developed software tool, offered free-of-charge, helps fleet operators to calculate the total costs of recruiting drivers, including both the labor hours needed for screening applicants, and the outside costs.

For more information on Spectrum Driver Recruiters, go to

Savings From An Unlikely Place

Spectrum Driver Recruiters is helping US fleets return major dollars to their bottom line by targeting a major expense that most often goes overlooked and under accounted for.

While “non-hire” recruiting costs may seem like an unlikely place to look for cost saving opportunities, many managers believe that, by eliminating the costs associated with the people they don’t hire, they have found a hidden treasure, capable of returning considerable dollars to their bottom lines. Spectrum Driver Recruiters, a specialist provider of Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) to the transportation industry, is seeing an upsurge in business due to the struggling economy. Spectrum reports that the increase in demand for outsourced driver-recruiting comes from the heightened need for large fleets to find ways to cut costs and streamline operations.


Major fleets that have normally had difficulty recruiting enough drivers to effectively sustain fleet operations are now seeing an increasing number of driver applicants. While that increase in traffic has been an enormous benefit to those fleets from the standpoint of selection, it has also required more resources to manage. “No one could have guessed eighteen months ago, that a shift towards a surplus of drivers in the market could result in anything other than a reduction in driver recruiting expenditures’, says Ken Walker, Spectrum Driver Recruiters. “However, savvy fleet managers, are noting that the influx of inquiries is putting an increasing strain on the resources needed to manage the flow of interested candidates, most of whom are not qualified and are never hired.”

Human resource experts refer to this unusable segment of candidate flow as “non-hire traffic” and report that though it is the most significant portion of the total recruiting expenditure, it is rarely recognized or quantified. Typically only costs directly associated with filling a position, such as advertising, are captured when quantifying recruiting costs. Industry experts report that on average, non-hire screening costs account for 95-97% of the entire recruiting expenditure. With this in mind, many innovative fleets are now targeting the elimination of non-hire screening through outsourcing as an opportunity to add dollars back to their businesses.

One of the most significant benefits of outsourcing some portion of the driver-recruiting function is that in most outsourced driver-recruiting relationships the recruiting vendor absorbs the cost of the non-hire screening element and delivers only hirable candidates who have been screened in accordance with the fleet’s normal standards. Many driver-recruitment outsourcing providers, such as Spectrum Driver Recruiters, even offer a savings guarantee that ensures that the engagement delivers the promised return.

For more information on Spectrum Driver Recruiters, go to

Direct-To-Driver Advertising Service Available To Carriers

Spectrum Driver Recruiters, a specialist provider of recruitment processing outsourcing (RPO) to the transportation/logistics industry, has announced the availability of its proprietary Direct-To-Driver advertising service as a standalone offering for those companies not requiring full RPO.

Spectrum Driver Recruiters, a specialist provider of recruitment processing outsourcing (RPO) to the transportation/logistics industry, has announced the availability of its proprietary Direct-To-Driver advertising service as a standalone offering for those companies not requiring full RPO.

Starting with its private database of more than 300,000 commercial drivers nationwide, combined with other proprietary processes and communication tools, Spectrum says it broadcasts open positions to the supply chain driver community faster and more effectively than newspaper advertising. Spectrum says that within hours, it is able to reach drivers who are out over-the-road and may not have access to local newspapers, allowing fleet operators to better compete for highly qualified drivers.

Unlike newspaper advertising, Spectrum says it prescreens the respondents as part of its direct-to-driver advertising service. Spectrum says it also conducts complete background checks, submitting only qualified candidates to its clients for the final hiring decision.

Newspaper ads usually lack a screening mechanism, and significant time and resources are then wasted sorting through unqualified respondents, says Ken Walker, principal of Southfield, Mich.-based Spectrum Driver Recruiters. The ads often result in zero hires, and have to be repeated. The cost of our direct-to-driver service, with the prescreening included, is comparable to that of newspaper advertising. And, as needed during the advertising period, we’ll continue to circulate the job opening at no additional charge.

Spectrum Driver Recruiters clients range from small fleet operators to large carriers and Fortune 50 companies. The company says it also has developed a software tool that is offered free to fleet operators to help them calculate the total costs of recruiting drivers, including both the labor hours needed for screening applicants and the outside costs. For more information, go to

Free Software Helps Estimate Costs of Driver Recruiting

Spectrum Driver Recruiters has announced the availability of their new Driver Recruitment Cost Estimator, a free software tool that will help fleet operators calculate the total costs of recruiting drivers, including both the labor hours needed for screening applicants, and the outside costs.

Spectrum Driver Recruiters has announced the availability of their new Driver Recruitment CostEstimator, a free software tool that will help fleet operators calculatethe total costs of recruiting drivers, including both the labor hoursneeded for screening applicants, and the outside costs.

Estimated averages in the trucking industry indicate that approximately 100 respondents are needed to fill every open driver position. The total cost of the process is often not fully accounted for or acknowledged. Spectrum Driver Recruiters focuses on reducing the cost of processing the 99% of respondents who are not hired. Spectrum reduces both the hiring timeline and the associated processing labor by using their proprietary techniques coupled with their own national database of over 300,000 commercial truck drivers.

The Cost Estimator software uses a simple but comprehensive fill-in-the-blank format to identify and quantify all time and cost factors involved in the hiring process, to verify areas where cost reduction can be significant. For each parameter, an industry standard is shown as the default value; the user then adjusts the data based on their operation.

As an example, a company with a 1,000-driver fleet, with a 50% turnover rate, needs to hire 500 drivers per year. A planned increase in drivers could bring the total hiring target to 600 drivers, requiring about 60,000 respondents to fill these positions. Only half of the 60,000 respondents will complete an application (30,000), and about 40% of those will pre-qualify and will be phone screened (12,000). Only 25% of the screened respondents will meet the minimum hiring standards and qualify to be interviewed (3,000), and of those candidates, 20% will be hired (600). Along the way, tens of thousands of hours are expended reviewing resumes, screening applicants, performing background checks, and conducting interviews.

The Cost Estimator allows management to plug in their actual data, ratios and hourly labor costs, as well as outside costs such asadvertising, to determine total cost. Labor and cost factors for each step in the process are displayed in a spreadsheet format.

“The software calculates the total cost per hire, and more importantly, the total cost per non-hire,” said Ken Walker, Spectrum Driver Recruiters. “We developed it for our own use, but now want to make it more readily available to the transportation industry. Driver recruiting is our only business.”

Trucking industry professionals may request a free copy of the Spectrum Driver Recruitment Cost Estimator by visiting, or by calling toll-free 855.795.1100.

Founded in 2000, Spectrum Driver Recruiters (, based in Southfield, Michigan, serves the North American transportation community with specialized logistics-recruiting expertise, proven methodology, and a proprietary database of over 300,000 qualified commercial truck driver candidates. Improved hiring speed and a substantial reduction in overall driver recruitment costs and investment are the proven result.

SOURCE Spectrum Driver Recruiters

Spectrum Revamps Marketing Campaign

Spectrum Driver Recruiters ( is a leader in placing pre-screened, qualified drivers for trucking companies.

Spectrum Driver Recruiters in “Fleet Owner” Magazine

Spectrum Driver Recruiters aims to help carriers overcome recruitment issues using its proprietary driver database and referral system to find safe candidates who fit well with a client’s corporate culture and requirements. Spectrum Driver Recruiters aims to help carriers overcome recruitment issues using its proprietary driver database and referral system to find safe candidates who fit well with a client’s corporate culture and requirements.

Spectrum Offers Truck Driver Recruitment for Clients in North America

Spectrum Driver Recruiters is a driver recruiting firm specializing in finding qualified, commercially licensed truck drivers for transportation clients anywhere in North America. Spectrum is able to supply more qualified candidates than typical in-house recruitment efforts because the company’s proprietary recruitment system puts an open position in front of more people, faster than any client could do on his own. As a result of finding more qualified applicants for a position, Spectrum can then filter through these to identify the very best driver for the position, and then present that driver to a client for his approval.