EpicVue, providers of an in-cab satellite TV packaged exclusively for the trucking industry, announced results of a survey indicating the top reasons drivers chose to stay with fleets. Among the top retention factors are independence and respect.
“What is most interesting is how closely correlated turnover rates are to the culture of an organization,” noted Lance Platt, CEO of EpicVue, who has a PhD in Business Organization and Management.
“By nature of its stability, organizational culture, once established, is difficult to change,” Platt said.
EpicVue’s study asked fleets what percentage of their drivers have been with them under a year, 1-5 years, 5-10 years, and over 10 years. “While most fleets are heavily weighted toward the shorter end, they often have good reasons if they’re expanding or hiring students,” Platt related. “Fleets with really good driver longevity, however, were able to provide ideas that seem to work well in generating higher than average loyalty.
Some of the ideas Platt says has gathered from fleets include:
- Polling drivers for ideas and feedback and creating new programs out of those ideas
- Having drivers help refine a performance management scorecard.
- Providing every driver with a company email address along with an iPhone so they can stay in touch with colleagues and family
- Sending managers to ethics and leadership training to ensure drivers get a consistent message.
Separate from the longevity, EpicVue looked at driver satisfaction by asking drivers how much they trust the company, whether they feel the company cares about their opinions, whether they feel the company communicates honestly, if they would refer a friend to the company, etc.
“The survey results provide a picture of how comfortable drivers feel at a company, which reflects how much they feel they’re respected and valued by the organization,” Platt said. “Every fleet claims they treat drivers like family and have great relationships as a result, but the answers to these questions often tell a different story.”
EpicVue also spent time at truck stops interviewing 270 over-the-road drivers to find out what leads to loyalty. Interviewed drivers ranged in age from their early 20’s to over 50, had an average tenure with a company of 5.73 years and on average spent 2.61 weeks away from home at a time. Three questions related to loyalty were asked:
- Other than the paycheck, what do you enjoy most about being a professional truck driver?
- Other than compensation, what is the best aspect of the fleet you drive for?
- Other than the money, what makes you most loyal to the fleet company you drive for?
“The findings indicate that independence (26%) is what drivers enjoy most about their job,” Platt reported. “In addition, the best aspect of a fleet for the drivers surveyed is a company they view as respectful, friendly, understanding and kind (37%). In terms of practices that create loyalty, one third cited companies that listen to suggestions, followed by incentives and benefits (25%).”