Turnover rises at large truckload carriers

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The annualized driver turnover rate for large truckload carriers during the first quarter of 2007 was 127 percent – 6 percentage points higher than the rate in the last quarter of 2006. Those carriers ended the first quarter with 1.8 percent fewer drivers than at the start.

“The softer freight demand contributed to the increase in large TL driver turnover,” says ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “Nearly 80 percent of the large carriers in our sample saw their number of employee drivers fall during the period. In some cases, the drivers that left were not replaced, due to soft and choppy freight levels.”

These challenges didn’t create turnover at small truckload carriers, however. Those trucking companies saw the average annualized turnover rate drop to 102 percent from 112 percent. In addition, small carriers added 3.5 percent to their driver ranks, marking the second consecutive quarterly gain in the number of drivers.

ATA uses $300 million in annual revenue as the dividing point between small and large truckload carriers.