Article

Automation: A Better Way to Recruit Drivers

Workflow management tools, analytics and behavioral assessment can make the hiring process easier and quicker.

October 2014, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

by Jim Beach, Technology Contributing Editor - Also by this author

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Driver turnover among large truckload fleets averaged 92% in the first quarter this year, according to the American Trucking Associations, and 78% for small carriers. Industry experts say turnover is even up in trucking segments known for their retention, such as private fleets and less-than-truckload.

What those numbers mean is that carriers of all sizes and types spend a lot of time and money recruiting, qualifying and hiring drivers — a process that could drown a company in paperwork. Fortunately, automated systems can reduce or even eliminate the paperwork burden, streamline the process for both the carrier and driver applicants and in some cases, result in a better pool of potential hires.

A number of vendors offer products specifically designed to automate the recruitment process. HireRight, for instance, offers on-demand employment background checks, drug and health screening and other qualification services. The company’s background screening application can be integrated with a company’s existing applicant tracking system.

Oklahoma-based Tenstreet's recruiting product automates collecting application data through the web and includes a digitized signature feature.

One Tenstreet user, Cargo Transporters of Claremonth, N.C., finds the biggest benefit of the applicant tracking system is the convenience of digital signature, says Shelly Dellinger Mundy, director of recruiting and retention.

"Without ever faxing, emailing, scanning or mailing these applicants, we can begin to process their applications," she says, noting that the system has dramatically decreased the amount of time it takes to hire an applicant.

Mundy says the system also makes it easier to monitor which recruitment channels are performing.

“What I personally like is all our leads, applications, inquiries are processed through Tenstreet. As the director, I can see what sites are producing, in a very easy-to-read format. And, disseminating the applications to my staff is a much fairer process. Before, we had recruiters assigned to certain Internet sites, job boards, etc., to receive the applications generated, which was fine until your internet site, job board, magazine wasn't performing.”

Arkansas-based flatbed carrier Maverick Transportation uses the SHIPS recruitment workflow tool from EBE Technologies. The software helps automate and streamline the recruiting process based on carrier specifications while meeting regulatory requirements.

“Using workflow from end to end allows us not only to save time and increase accuracy, it also helps us in an electronic way, to validate the qualifications of the driver both internally and with third parties,” said Wayne Brown, vice president of information technology at Maverick.

This ensures that when a driver shows up for work, “there are no surprises,” Brown says. “We validate that all the ducks are in a row before they ever show up on campus.  And we are able to do this programmatically utilizing work flow and business intelligence tools.”

From the driver’s perspective, once he has arrived there is very little data to enter to begin the pre-hire and hiring processes. “We simply allow them to validate the accuracy of what they entered on their application.”

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