The truck driver recruiter is an important position.
A company needs you to seek out, and bring them quality drivers for their trucks that are reliable and safe.
No drivers means no company, so it’s a big job with lots of responsibility.
In this article I will tell you what a truck driver recruiter does, what is the ‘right stuff’ for a recruiter to have, and how you can make a successful career of bringing awesome drivers to a career they enjoy!
1. Truck Driver Recruiter Job Description
A driver recruiter is responsible for supplying the life’s blood of the trucking company. The drivers.
Without drivers, a company is just a yard of trucks and trailers.
Truck driver recruiters seek out drivers that would fit the needs a company requires.
They match qualities with rules that a company sets out for prospective drivers.
Rules like: amount of years on the road, salary requirement, types of loads, even things like if a driver is certified to haul HAZMAT loads.
Recruiting is not just filling cabs, a recruiter needs to retain the drivers that they bring on.
2. How To Become A Truck Driver Recruiter
Companies want someone that they know they can rely on to keep a steady flow of new drivers, as well as being able to retain the current drivers they have.
Becoming a truck driver recruiter is as simple as visiting this job board and searching “truck driver recruiter”. From there you will find recruiter jobs and learn more about what they are looking for.
With learning it is possible to be an independent driver recruiter.
These people take on contracts from companies, and recruit on their own.
It takes learning the industry for people who don’t know anything about the trucking industry.
You need to know what a driver holds dear, when they take a job.
Training courses are offered to teach people interested in taking this route.
For those wanting to be an independent recruiter it is even possible to do it as a driver.
Some companies jump at the opportunity to have an inside man (or woman) doing the recruiting.
They have crucial experience, and are able to forge a trusting relationship with a truck driver, more so than someone who stays in an air conditioned office making phone calls.
These inside recruiters have done the nitty gritty and have a better understanding of the benefits of driving for that company.
3. Truck Driver Recruiter Qualifications
Truck driver recruiting jobs do not typically require a fancy education to join.
Most jobs require just a high school diploma, and work experience, which is not always experience in recruiting.
It takes a certain kind of personality to thrive in this role, however.
People who have worked in sales will find themselves right at home in truck driver recruiting.
As with most recruiting you are doing both selling the role, and qualifying the potential driver.
A truck driver recruiter will need to have knowledge of what a driver does, as well as knowledge of the industry in its current state.
For prospective recruiters that want to work with a company, you will need some work experience.
This can vary, as personalities right for truck driver recruiting can come from a few different walks of life.
Customer Service Representatives: people that actually enjoy working with their customers may find their fit recruiting truckers. You are working with a recruit, to help them get what they want in searching for a company to drive for.
Similar to helping a customer find what they are looking for in a store. You are helping them solve a problem, which in this case is finding employment with a good company!
Sales People: You will find that your skills in qualifying a sales prospect and closing the deal, lines up in a very similar way to recruiting people for a job.
Recruiters In Different Industries: Looking to shift gears, and find a new and interesting career using your skills you’ve already acquired as a recruiter?
Truck driver recruiting may be right up your alley! You will be learning a new industry, and working with a different kind of recruit, but if you have worked recruiting already you will possess the hard and soft skills to make a smooth transition.
4. Truck Driver Recruiter Salary
As of March 2019, the average salary of a truck driver recruiter is $51,349 per year.
The salary of a truck driver recruiter can vary depending on a few factors.
The size of the company is a big factor.
A company with a few trucks would not pay as much as a big firm like Celadon for example.
Celadon is one of the biggest trucking companies in the country, and they have many cabs to fill.
The type of company you work for can determine your salary.
Recruiters are not limited to just working for a trucking company. Some companies are built entirely around recruiting for trucking companies, externally.
They are tasked with filling a contract of a certain amount of drivers.
Retention is less important here, as these companies simply try to fill cabs.
For the entrepreneurial recruiter that likes to work for themselves, being an independent recruiter offers a different kind of pay out.
Independent recruiters typically get paid by the amount of drivers they bring on, as well as how well they retain that driver.
In this role, salary is formatted in a “sky is the limit” kind of way.
The more recruits that sign up to drive and stay, the more your earning potential.
The state you are based out of can also affect what kind of salary you will make in this career path.
States that are hot spots for trucking have lots of opportunity in trucking recruiting with higher salaries.
The top 5 states for trucking according the AJOT (American Journal of Occupational Therapy) are Tennessee, Washington, Oklahoma, Texas, and Indiana.
If you live in one of these states chances are you can find a truck driver recruiting job that pays well.
5. How Do Truck Driver Recruiters Get Paid?
Payment can be done in a few different ways depending on the job, and where you are employed. Truck driver recruiting often has a similar pay structure to a salesman.
Some recruiters are paid by a salary for doing their job as a recruiter.
With just a salary, commission does not happen.
Keeping your job is what happens when you recruit and retain drivers.
Bonuses happen in some companies to reward recruiters for a high recruiting and high retention rate.
Base Pay + Commission
Many places pay a base pay, as well as giving a commission for signing on more drivers.
Bonuses are also awarded to recruiters that are able to maintain a high retention rate.
This pay structure will be more common for independent and rolling recruiters.
Most independents will be payed for each recruit that signs on, and bonuses are sometimes given for a recruit that is retained over a period of time.
6. Truck Driver Recruiter Training
Training for truck driver recruiting can be done in a few different ways.
There are courses offered to teach you.
The courses online to teach you how to be a recruiter are geared towards becoming an independent or “rolling” recruiter.
There are webinars offered from some companies, as well as an Udemy course. The Udemy course is more geared around being a “rolling” recruiter, meaning it is for truckers that want to drive and recruit at the same time.
Training from the company you work for. Many companies put their recruiters through training to help them be successful.
Most companies will not let you just “sink or swim”, that could be expensive, and increase their own turnover in their recruiting department.
7. Tips To Become A Successful Truck Driver Recruiter
There are many things you can do to be a successful truck driver recruiter.
These are some of the big things to be mindful of as your starting out.
Developing these habits in your work will help you be successful as you continue to grow in your new career!
Driver recruiting requires juggling many things all at once.
There are deadlines to meet, drivers to talk to, applications to review.
Organization and proper time management is key to being successful.
Good Record Keeping
Recruiting is managing people.
You will have a great deal of people you are in and out of contact with, people you will be contacting, and people who will be contacting you.
You must keep good records to keep a proper track on how the recruiting process is going.
You would not want to be caught off guard by someone who wants you to remember them, or forgetting a good candidate altogether.
Remember that a good driver has many options available to them, so keep good track of your people, so you can get good people driving with you!
Forge Strong Relationships
Recruiting is not a one and done thing.
You need to forge strong relationships with your recruits.
You are their main point of contact for any questions and concerns they have.
Having a strong relationship where they can trust you will help you with your main goal: retaining them.
Really Knowing Your Candidate
A huge gripe about recruiters is that they seem to call anyone and everyone with a pulse to drive.
Some seem to not know the importance of really qualifying a recruit, and when the driver thinks all is well, they are shut down by the company.
It makes them think it was all a waste of time.
Getting really good at pre-qualifying your candidate will save a lot of hassle on both ends.
8. Recruiting and Retention
There are two main components to being a driver recruiter.
The obvious one is recruiting. You are filling up the cabs with drivers. The second, less obvious component is retention. This is a big issue, and separates a good recruiter from a great recruiter.
A recruiter that can bring on a driver, and keep them through thick and thin is extremely valuable in the current trucking environment.
Retention is the main quality that defines a good recruiter. The longer a driver stays on, the better it looks on a recruiter.
Anyone can get someone to sign up, companies worry more about keeping a driver driving for them.
What is driver retention? Retention is keeping a person after you have successfully recruited them.
Retention is the main goal that a recruiter should strive for!
You can sign up a million recruits, but if none of them stick around, then you are right back to square one.
Answer questions to truckers honestly, and don’t make promises that can’t be delivered on.
Truckers have a pretty good B.S. radar, and they can smell if you’re feeding them a line.
Not delivering on your promises to them is a surefire way to tank your retention rate, and may have you reading a different article about a different career.
9. Events (where to find truck drivers)
Events are a great way to recruit drivers.
The relationship started at a job fair, or hiring open house can be instrumental in finding good drivers.
A face to face chat is easier for both parties than doing a phone call.
The recruiter can answer any questions, qualify a driver on the spot, and create a better relationship, which will work wonders for retention.
Company Open House
Company open houses are going to be for the recruiter that works for a company.
Companies will hold hiring events on site to try and bring on new drivers.
This gives recruiters opportunities to speak face to face with a prospect, tell them about the job, and they can even do things like show off their fleet and trailers.
Some places hold job fairs, where companies can sign up, and pay a fee to be a part of the fair.
The company can send their best people to talk to potential recruits.
Here many recruiters find success, because they can get to know a recruit face to face.
The relationship can start much stronger talking to a person in front of them, instead of receiving a cold phone call.
Trade shows are a great way to talk to drivers.
They are similar to a job fair, because the company has a booth where they can meet people interested in the company.
Recruiting is a big job, and it may seem overwhelming, but it can be a very rewarding job.
You can help people find their dream driving job, and steer them towards the path for success.
It takes the right kind of person, but if you want to find a rewarding career helping truckers, then being a truck driver recruiter may be the right fit for you!
Written by: Quinn McCoy