We work with a broad array of clients to help them generate more driver leads. We helped drive more than 1 million leads last year, in fact.
Working with so many clients gives us unique insight into the world of truck driver recruiting. We see it all! We see what strategies work, and we see those bottom-line-killing missteps that keep trucks empty and idle.
I spoke with Aaron Mowery, former college baseball standout and current Randall-Reilly VP of Recruiting Sales standout, about this issue. He rattled off a list of common mistakes he said we see fleets making in their recruiting efforts.
1.Not Working Leads Quickly
Short form leads come into fleets’ systems in real time, and should be responded to within 10-15 minutes. Many recruiters attend to these short forms hours or days later, which greatly reduces your chance of connecting with a driver. Here’s what we tell our recruiting clients about these short form leads:
– 80% of the time they’re coming from a mobile device, so reaching back out within a few minutes allows the recruiter to reach the driver while they still have the phone in their hand. As we mentioned in a recent post about maximizing phone calls, you need to strike while the recruiting iron’s hot. It’s now or never!
– Short form leads are company specific – these leads should be looked at just like a voicemail in the recruiting inbox.
– These leads should not get lost in the mix of other multi-carrier applications. Multi-carrier leads are not specific to any particular company and are much more difficult to convert into a hire than a company-specific short form lead. If a driver already knows about your company and has expressed specific interest in working for you, that’s a hot lead that requires immediate attention.
2.Not Learning the Art of Conversation or Asking Good Questions
Aaron said his team often listens to recruiters’ calls. While many are engaging, affable, tremendous conversationalists, some are … less so. Do your recruiters sound less than interested on the phone? Do they ask smart, relevant questions specific to the driver they’re talking to, or do they just fly through the same routine each time? Personalization and attention to detail make a huge difference.
Excellent recruiters match their company’s features and benefits to the driver’s needs. You do this by asking good questions and listening to the driver. Just like anyone else, drivers want to be respected, listened to, and treated as a professional individual worthy of investment.
That all begins mastering the art of conversation, and learning how to ask insightful, purposeful questions on the fly.
3. Lack of Empathy and Not Understanding the Trucking Life
It’s crucial for recruiters to understand and appreciate the job a truck driver has and the work they do on a daily basis. It’s dangerous, stressful, and incredibly taxing. Respecting the driver and showing empathy for their job comes across in their tone and conversation during those phone calls.
As much as possible, recruiters should familiarize themselves with the truck driving life and lifestyle. Put yourself in their shoes and consider drivers’ day-to-day challenges. Learn about specific driver pain points so you can anticipate questions and offer helpful information to alleviate concerns.
Being oblivious, rude, or uncaring is the fastest way to turn off a driver and get them searching elsewhere.
4. Not Setting Goals
Driving a truck is a hard job. So is being a recruiter! But just like any job, it helps to have measurable goals.
Aaron mentioned to me how many recruiters fail to set personal weekly, monthly, and annual goals. Not just the corporate goals that companies may set, but rather personal targets to shoot for like:
- X amount of drivers scheduled for orientation per week
- X amount of outbound phone calls made per day
- X amount of total phone calls per day
Goal-setting makes you more intentional, and gives you specific, tangible goals to hit. If you haven’t recently, ask yourself, “have I identified my win lately?”
Have you set measurable goals to achieve that win, and mapped out a strategy to arrive at your winning destination?
Recruiters who make a plan, make it measurable, and make it official are far more likely to succeed.
These are just four of the most common mistakes we see. They might seem like small details, but these are things that can make or break a fleet.
Whatever pain points you struggle with, we have your back and we’re here to help. If you haven’t worked with us before, have a look at this sample driver recruiting campaign to get an idea of what’s possible.
In the meantime, it’s wise to work with your recruiters to increase goal setting, and swift, effective, empathetic communication.