Fikes Truck Line reports improved retention, turnover

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Fikes Truck Line says it is retaining more new contractors in the first year of their lease, and that turnover among their owner-operator fleet is declining. The Hope, Ark.-based company says retention jumped 13 percent this year, to a total of 70 percent of all new leases; while turnover dropped from 80 percent a year ago to 65 percent in 2005.

Gary Salisbury, FTL’s senior vice president and chief operating officer, announced his company’s statistics at the recent Recruitment and Retention Conference in Nashville, Tenn. This is the second consecutive year of improvements, Salisbury says, and they were achieved in conjunction with programs targeted at increasing profitability among contractors.

Front-end initiatives to increase profitability include tracking more data about loads, distances and deadhead, Salisbury says. FTL also is covering tuition costs for contractors and operations staff to attend the two-day Certified Master Contractor business program sponsored by the Alliance of Independent Trucking, he says.