2012 Fast and Furious

Summer has reached new highs with warm weather settling over much of the US and Canada driving electric bills high and air conditioning use even higher. Along with the sweltering heat has come lots of attention on the transportation industry. The latest news is that truckload driver turnover was much higher coming off the first quarter of this year. The news was bad for large fleets and even worse for smaller fleets according to ATA’s chief Economist Bob Costello. We can make some assumptions about that turnover but the common thread is that it affects everyone. The cost is not just to the trucking firms however. Turnover and job change affects the truckers and their families as well. Where it may be necessary to have some turnover due to CSA violations and retirement or accidents, changing jobs or trucking companies is not always the best answer. If you are a truck driver it may be best to reach out to management or ownership to see about fixing issues or problems that might be slipping by others in the organization. New business or changes in operations may be creating problems that can be resolved with some proper feedback and communication. Driver input can go a long way in helping maintain a competent, safe, and reliable staff. Turnover costs money and keeping a safe and satisfied team of drivers is the goal of most organizations. Its difficult to do that if the complaints and issues are only discussed among the drivers themselves. New ideas and improvements only come from good feedback.

Along with rising temperatures this summer comes the news that Transportation Company Insurance costs are rising. Even the good guys are seeing increasing from the insurance companies. These rate increases are becoming a bigger part of the business and maintaining a proper feet and providing coverage for customers as well as employees is on the rise. What can we do ? Well, first and foremost the costs go into the rates so in many cases rates to shippers will need to increase. That is difficult in a competitive and tight economy. Second, with healthcare and liability costs increasing the costs to insure or provide insurance coverage to trucking companies is on the increase. From a healthcare perspective,We can all help by taking preventative measures to stay healthy and addressing issues before they become a bigger problem. Proper diet and exercise are key components for not only truck drivers, but all of their family members as well. Safe driving and reducing accidents or incidents is also a key component to keeping costs down and manageable.

Finally, with Diesel prices jumping up more often than not, we can try to maximize our routing, reduce downtime and save fuel whenever possible thru good communication. Talking with dispatch or operations personnel on small customer issues or transportation routes can be beneficial to everyone. If we stay in contact with customer and employees on a daily basis we all benefit. From cost savings to new ideas to fixing issues and reducing turnover. It all helps!