If you’re like most carriers today, you’re feeling the effects of the capacity crunch and on the lookout for qualified, professional drivers. Statistically speaking, women make up more than half of the workforce in the United States, but less than six percent of the truck driving population. So how can you tap into more of this population segment and add female professional drivers to your fleet?
My organization, Women In Trucking Association (WIT), recently partnered with many of the industry’s top authorities to compile the Women In Trucking Association’s Recruiting Guide: How to Attract Female Professional Drivers. The report—available only to WIT members—provides insight to help carriers improve recruiting efforts by understanding why, how, and where to reach female drivers, including these three tips to more effectively market to female professional drivers.
Tip 1: Make sure to use high-value terms in your recruiting message.
Research conducted by graduate students at the University of Wisconsin–Stout found that the primary reason the women were attracted to a career in trucking was good pay. That’s why, in addition to including a thorough job description, your recruiting materials should be informative about wages and benefits, even speaking to job security and financial stability. Phrases like “competitive pay” or “comprehensive benefits” or “retirement savings” can be impactful in recruiting messages. These incentives were also noted as top reasons drivers stay in the industry.
Tip 2: Integrate the experiences and scenic views as components of your recruiting strategy.
The study notes that the freedom of the open road was an enticing feature of the profession. Similarly, other top-rated reasons included the enjoyment of trucking and travel. A survey conducted by GROUP1201, an Atlanta-based advertising agency, found that vibrant backgrounds, pretty countryside, sky, and mountain imagery were preferred by female drivers when looking at recruiting ads.
Tip 3: Consider emphasizing driving as a team when recruiting female drivers to your company.
Having a family member in the industry was the fourth top reason cited for becoming a professional driver. Many women enter the trucking industry to drive as a team with a husband, boyfriend, or other co-driver. Find ways to highlight the opportunities available for driving teams, and share stories from women drivers and realistic information about the job.
One final note. The C.H. Robinson Foundation is once again offering a Truckload Contract Carrier Scholarship Program. Up to ten $2,500 college scholarships will be awarded to qualified students of employees at eligible contract carriers of C.H. Robinson. Applications for the 2016 scholarships will be accepted through February 15. Please visit the scholarship website to learn more about the program and the 2015 recipients.