Updated: Dec 17, 2021
Carriers and trucking company owners face an endless amount of stress each day keeping their companies up and running. Here are the top 4 concerns for transportation carriers in the United States.
The number one concern for carriers is the current driver shortage. There has been an increasing driver shortage throughout the country for a couple of years. The biggest contributing factor to this shortage is driver retirement. A lot of drivers have simply reached the age of retirement and choose to do just that, retire. Companies are losing a lot of their dedicated drivers to retirement and are unable to permanently replace them. It is unclear exactly what factors are responsible for this inability of companies to hire permanent drivers. They are likely hiring drivers who are not lasting within the company due to retention issues which we will talk about next.
Hiring new drivers is a lot easier than keeping them on board. Driver retention is the second biggest concern for carriers in the industry. There are several factors that influence driver retention but the most important ones revolve around how happy drivers are with their job, compensation, and balance of OTR vs. home time.
Compliance and safety are both major concerns for carriers. If you are found to be in violation of compliance regulations it can affect your business in a negative way. Safety scores can also be impacted by compliance violations. When your safety scores drop, and you have violations under your MC and DOT, this can cause you to lose contracts as many companies require you to have a certain safety score on top of keeping your violations to a minimum.
Insurance is likely one of a carrier's biggest expenses, outside of the cost of purchasing or leasing trucks. Getting insured is expensive but simple, but staying insured is another thing. As I mentioned before when talking about compliance, violations can really negatively impact your business. Another negative impact that compliance violations can have is on your insurance. Your insurance company may drop you if you have too many violations as you will become a risk for them to insure. Once an insurance company drops you it can be incredibly difficult to find another insurer willing to work with you.
Another risk that comes with getting dropped from your insurance company is losing your authority. Now you don’t literally lose your authority, but you will have to re-instate your DOT and MC. This will also happen if you let your insurance lapse at the end of your contract. What this means is that when you try to book loads, companies will see you as a new carrier and will likely make you wait several months before booking with them again. It is essentially like starting your MC all over again.
While these may not be the only things carriers have to worry about, they are definitely the biggest issues that they come across. If you are a carrier, make sure you keep these things in mind and always plan for incidents ahead of time.