Building a team of great drivers for your trucking company can be the most important aspect of growing your business, as opposed to just treading water and trying to maintain your position in the market. This makes it essential to recruit and train good professionals, and keep them engaged as employees once they become members of your team. Here are some ways you can find the most talented drivers, and keep them happy so they’re glad to come to work each day, and do their best for your trucking business.

Offer a competitive salary

To no one’s surprise, this choice appeared at the top of the list for more than three quarters of all drivers who participated in a nationwide survey asking about the most important factors in choosing a trucking job. It’s important to remember that ‘competitive salary’ doesn’t necessarily mean what you consider to be a fair wage, but it should be a salary in line with industry standards.

If you’re really going to attract the cream of the crop, it will even need to be slightly better than standard. It’s also worth noting that many drivers in this same survey indicated that good benefits was a factor at least equal to competitive salary in appeal, and in some cases was even more attractive.

Offer local jobs

Especially in recent years when long-haul driving has become far less lucrative than it once was, driving local runs has become much more appealing to good drivers. In fact, this has the double appeal of avoiding long runs that don’t pay well, and getting in more time at home, because long road trips are not necessary.

Reach out to new drivers

More and more new drivers are entering the trucking industry in response to steadily rising demand. It is estimated by the federal government that over the next 30 years, 40% more freight will have to be moved by trucks, and that means more qualified drivers will be needed to man them. By anticipating this influx of new drivers, you can help them obtain their credentials and become qualified professionals, thereby increasing the likelihood that they will become members of your own team, possibly even demonstrating future loyalty in return.