RFX Blog

Trucking Industry Desperately Seeks New Independent Contractors and Drivers

October 5th, 2012

Trucking Industry Needs Drivers

Jobs in many industries have a bleak outlook right now; however this is not the case with trucking jobs. Several companies are seeking over-the-road independent contractor trucking professionals to fill a growing shortage.

Free Training Programs Being Utilized

Some trucking companies have responded to the shortage by offering free training programs for drivers. This is because the shortage in independent contractor trucking jobs is due in part to the cost of obtaining a CDL. This training can cost thousands of dollars before a single paycheck is ever earned. Often times this training is bundled with full-time employment to anyone who passes. The only catch is that those who are interested must first work for a set period of time, such as 90 days, working to load and unload freight before they will be accepted. Since safety concerns and the lack of training is often a deterrent for people, many companies have elected to provide training free of charge with a few strings attached.  One string is that drivers must remain in one of the trucking jobs offered by the company for at least one year after being hired. But when compared with the alternative of paying for such training, it can be the perfect opportunity for anyone who is serious about becoming an over-the-road truck driver.

Projected Growth

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that job growth for over-the-road and independent contractor drivers will increase by more than 21% by the year 2020. This will amount to more than 300,000 new trucking jobs in the coming years. The reason for the expected growth is that there are a number of independent contractor drivers leaving the profession due to age, health concerns, and a dislike of the new FMSCA rules enforced by the Department of Transportation compared with the olden days of over-the-road driving. This has created a number of vacancies, and that number is not expected to shrink any time soon.

Reasons for Shortage

Undoubtedly, it takes a special kind of individual to excel as an independent contractor. These individuals must be in fairly good health and be able to sit in one place for an extended period of time. They must also have a safe driving record and be able to pass a criminal background check. Truck drivers sacrifice a great deal of time away from their families, and this can deter people from entering the profession. Since all these things hinder people from considering independent contractor jobs, most companies are actively trying to eliminate another deterring factor, which is the lack of a Commercial Driver’s License.

Who is Accepting?

The types of people who are taking advantage of these opportunities are truly astounding. According to Joan McKinsey, a truck driver recruiter, she is seeing applicants such as teachers to even accountants asking for an application. Others may have worked in construction or performed machine work before deciding to consider over-the-road or independent contractor driving. Applicants fall into all age categories, as some new drivers are entering the profession after having more than three decade’s worth of experience in other industries.

The shortage of truckers means there is hope for those who have inadvertently found themselves unemployed. With the free programs being offered by major trucking companies, there is no time like the present to make the change.

Posted on October 5th, 2012 in Trucking Industry