Seventy-five percent of the workforce will be Millennials by 2025 according to a recent article in FleetOwner Magazine. The question is will that solve the driver shortage for the transportation industry? The same article stated that even if we market effectively to those people we still may not be able to solve the shortage and that may be skilled based problem.
We are starting to see the problem rise in the industry now. How many people do we have that have commercial drivers licenses yet don’t have jobs? The mentality of get them trained and get them rolling isn’t working as well as it should be. The reason is that some young people don’t possess the basic skills required to reach success in their chosen career. The social skills, passion for a career, and determination to achieve success are keeping back many of the people needed in the industry. A training school can only teach a person so much, the rest is up to the individual.
The article in FleetOwner magazine went on to say that many young people will remain in low paying positions or even unemployed based on their social skills and education. Many have not gone on to post high school education giving them the skills needed for careers in the future. You can read the article here by clicking on the link.
What I took away from the article was the passion for learning piece of this article. In essence we have the people we need but they either don’t want the job or don’t have the basic skills to begin training for the position. At the end of the day that doesn’t solve our driver shortage. In the industry we are starting to see longer programs helping people build up their life skills as well as training them for their desired career. Trucking requires so many life skills for a driver to be successful that training to drive only covers a fraction of what is required to be a professional driver.
When potential drivers are looking at positions with companies in the industry we often focus on whether the carrier will be a good fit for the new driver. Do they want to be gone for a long time or run local? Do they want to haul this type of freight or that type of freight? Those are very important questions, but do we need to look deeper into the person? Should we be asking questions such as what experiences have they had and how did they deal with them? As we know in trucking a driver will experience so many things that require decisions to be made on the spot that focusing on a persons decision making capabilities might be the best place to start when looking for drivers. Remember trucking isn’t just about the trucks, but the person behind the wheel.
About the Author
Bruce Outridge has been in the transportation industry for over 30 years. He is an author of the books Driven to Drive and Running By The Mile, consultant, podcast host, and speaker. TTSAO also known as the Truck Training Schools Association of Ontario has certified member schools in the truck training vocation ensuring quality entry level drivers enter the transportation industry. To learn more about the TTSAO or to find a certified school in your area visit www.ttsao.com