As we all know, drivers are in high demand. Every fleet in the country is looking to recruit as many drivers as they can from a very limited pool of potential employees. It’s a tough time to be a driver recruiter.
However that doesn’t mean that you can’t be successful. It just means that you have to be able to highlight your own strengths and attract quality drivers as effectively as possible. Events provide the perfect vehicle to reach drivers with your message and connect with them.
Below are 5 ideas that will improve your driver recruiting efforts through events.
1.) Set goals for the event.
Goals are an integral part of every organization. If you don’t know where you want to be then you can’t get there. The same is true for events!
Set goals for every event. Make sure that you have clear expectations for your recruiters and your marketing staff. If you want to recruit ten drivers and build a prospecting list, then you understand your goals, but you also have to communicate that to your staff. Your goals will help you understand what you expect to gain from the event and how to create a plan to get there.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, but at some point city planners set out expectations.
2.) Highlight what makes you the best employer.
Drivers have a huge pool of fleets to choose from when they are searching for a job, but for fleets the pool of applicants is very limited. Because you know what your goals are for the event you should have a clear message about why you are a good alternative to your competition. As a driver recruiter you have to understand what your company offers that attracts drivers and highlight that at your events.
If you know that your insurance and wellness programs are above industry standard then you should highlight that at your events. If your compensation package is industry leading then put that somewhere in your collateral, or better yet in big letters on your booth. You need to give prospective drivers a reason why they should work for you.
Differentiating yourself from every other fleet will keep your brand top-of-mind.
3.) Advertise your trade show presence to your audience.
Since you are using paid media to connect with your audience then you should be using them to raise awareness about your event. You need to let people know that you will be there. If there is excitement about your fleet being at a trade show or event then you will see increased traffic. Increased exposure of your brand to qualified drivers is important. Also, it never hurts to have a huge crowd at your booth.
Most attendees make a plan on what booths they are going to go to at events. Most trade shows and recruiting events have, at least, dozens of demonstrations, booths, and speakers present. For many attendees it is simply impossible to visit every single one.
If attendees aren’t aware of your presence you will be left out of the plans to visit your booth, and you will lose out on connecting with them.
4.) Interact with your attendees.
Nothing attracts people like a personal interaction. The importance of even having a short conversation and shaking hands with the attendees at your event can’t be overstated. When was the last time you went to a restaurant and felt happy after receiving good service? I doubt you have ever been happy with bad service, whether in a restaurant or elsewhere. I will bet money you didn’t leave them a high tip.
Ensure that the recruiters you are sending to your events are personable ones. You only have one chance to make a first impression. Bad impressions are lasting impressions.
If you were personable, when they leave and think back on the event they will remember that you took time to introduce yourself despite having a million other things to do.
5.) Follow up after the event.
After the event, make sure you add a personal touch and follow up with qualified drivers. Call them on the phone, or send an email. Give them an opportunity to express any concerns or questions that they have about working with your fleet.
Continuing interaction between recruiters and drivers outside of your events is integral to the recruiting process. At the end of the day there are hundreds of other employment opportunities drivers could be following up on, but since they are talking to you, don’t treat them like a name or a number. A short and continued follow-up process after events will make them feel appreciated and respected.
Obviously these drivers have shown an interest in your fleet, and it is important to make sure that you are showing them the appropriate interest too.
I’ve said it before, and I will say it again, the available pool of drivers is low, and every fleet needs them. You have to show drivers that they will benefit from joining with your fleet, whether they are a company driver or an owner-operator. By planning your goals, highlight yourself as an employer, advertising your presence, interacting with attendees, and following up after the event, you are on the road to success.