by Contributing Author
Being a truck driver comes with plenty of freedom, but it can be incredibly draining. Long hours on the road mean time away from family. Physical and mental health can suffer, and there aren’t many outlets for drivers to turn to when they’re struggling at work. When your office is a cab, you need a good company supporting you to feel like you can overcome whatever hurdles you’re facing on the job. As a manager, it’s your responsibility to provide an open company culture that truckers can trust. One of the biggest problems companies face from low job satisfaction is long-term retention. By improving driver satisfaction, you can build meaningful relationships that lead to more reliable workers and strengthen your business. Read on to discover three ideas for keeping truck drivers happy.
Get the Right Gear
Equipment plays a large role in the operation of a vehicle, but it also impacts how efficiently a person can perform their job. Keep your trucks updated, and make sure every rig is road ready before it’s dispatched. Additional features that can help make driving more enjoyable are amenities and safety features. A good bed, microwave and TV can make rest stops truly relaxing. Safety features like GPS tracking are another major benefit. You can review a detailed guide on everything you need to know about GPS tracking for trucks here. Having GPS tracking capabilities can include route optimization, improved safety and faster delivery times.
Make Time for Families
Drivers are not all middle-aged men with no ties to the world. They don’t exist solely to be on the road. Truckers are spouses, partners and parents. They have children they want to see grow up, and family members they want to spend time with. They shouldn’t have to choose earning a living over living a life. There are a few ways you can structure your business to go the extra mile and be more family oriented.
One option is introducing a ride along program that allows drivers to bring a passenger or four-legged companion on jobs. The ability to bring a partner and/or children for jobs can help stave off loneliness on the road. Home time is also important. Make sure that your fleet is the appropriate size for your number of customers. This prevents drivers from being overworked to meet demands that should have been taken care of by management.
Be Open and Transparent
One of the biggest sources of stress for drivers isn’t low pay but an untrustworthy company. Being forced to drive more hours than allowed or haul heavier loads than permitted is a major source of contention. A trucker can be put in a difficult position when they are being pushed by their company to perform more than they can. They either have to sacrifice a paycheck or go along with something they aren’t okay with. Make sure that you operate ethically, respectfully and openly at all times. Drivers should not be treated like dispensable tools. They’re people, and they should be treated as equals who always feel like they’re on the same page as you.