The Importance of a Driver Employee Referral Program for Trucking Companies

Posted August 13, 2018 by Administrator in Transportation | 0 comments

In light of the current truck driver shortage, many trucking companies are raising pay as well as using a mix of recruitment strategies to attract new driver candidates. One of the most effective recruitment policy is an employee referral program.

The retention rate of employees that are referred by an existing employee will stay with your company an average of 2.7 years, compared to 1.5 years for candidates that were recruited from job boards. Employee referrals result in the most qualified applicants at a 1 to 10 ratio; applicants recruited through another avenues average 1 to 18.

Some of the most successful trucking companies have employee referral programs. There are several advantages to hiring an applicant that has been referred by a current employee.

  • In general, the time required to interview and check references for a new hire that has been referred by an employee is less – 20 days on average for a referral as opposed to 39 days for someone hired via a job board
  • New hires know at least one person in the company, giving them someone to turn to for guidance and support
  • When an employee refers someone to the company, it helps to retain both the existing employee and the new one

If your company is not using this valuable recruitment strategy, it is a good idea to consider instituting an employee referral program. Here are 5 things to keep in mind as you design a new program or fine tune an existing one.

  1. Who can participate?

Who will be eligible to participate in your employee referral program? Is it limited to drivers, or will you include managers, interns, temps or other staff members?

  1. How will the program work?
  • Will you give a different amount to different types of applicants (i.e. experienced drivers, recent grads, less experienced drivers, students, etc.)?
  • Will you offer a one-time bonus or offer incentives for various milestones, such as the new hire completing their first load or remaining active for 90 days, etc?
  • Will you offer to earn mileage pay for each mile your referred driver covers?
  • Make sure you specify reward amounts and payout timeframe and structure.
  1. How will you track the program?

Set up an applicant tracking system that includes a referral source field (type of referral = employee) and the name of the referrer. Collect any other pertinent information, such as the date of the referral. You can use a simple tracking form such as Google Docs or an Excel spreadsheet to track the information.

  1. How will you market the program?

Consider using the following marketing tactics to get the word out about your employee referral program:

  • Launch party to build excitement
  • Pre and post launch communications in company email, newsletter or other communications systems you are currently using
  • Consider using a SMS texting service to continue to reach out to your existing driver-base
  • Make sure your hiring managers and recruiters understand the program completely and the value it brings the company
  • Don’t forget to let new hires know about the program as they can be a valuable source of new applicants.
  • Hold fun driver referral contests that give drivers an exciting reason to recommend new applicants. The rewards/prizes should be interesting and relevant to drivers. Keep the contest fun and engaging and recognize participants throughout the entire campaign.
  1. Are you using employee referral program best practices?
  • Keep the rules of the program simple and easy to understand. If it’s too complicated, people will be discouraged from wanting to participate.
  • Use an interactive system that makes it easy and personalized for employees, such as setting up a cloud-based referral system.
  • Make sure you follow through on the rewards of the program as promised.
  • Don’t be stingy with rewards – your employees are helping your company and should be rewarded accordingly.
  • Contact the referrers and thank them personally. People really appreciate the recognition and are more likely to refer in the future.

Employee referrals are a powerful source of finding potential drivers. When they have an incentive to make the effort to make a recommendation, your company will benefit with more leads, new hires and better retention rates.

Cline Wood Insurance offers customized insurance, risk products and services that will improve your bottom line. You can depend on Cline Wood to offer solutions tailored to your needs. To learn more about how Cline Wood can help your trucking company, click here.

This document is not intended to be taken as advice regarding any individual situation and should not be relied upon as such. Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC shall have no obligation to update this publication and shall have no liability to you or any other party arising out of this publication or any matter contained herein. Any statements concerning actuarial, tax, accounting or legal matters are based solely on our experience as consultants and are not to be relied upon as actuarial, accounting, tax or legal advice, for which you should consult your own professional advisors. Any modeling analytics or projections are subject to inherent uncertainty and the analysis could be materially affective if any underlying assumptions, conditions, information or factors are inaccurate or incomplete or should change.

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