Top job benefits should be pay and wellness
I was driving along listening to Dave Nemo when a guest made a comment that got my attention. He is a recruiter, and he complained that it is just too easy for drivers quit. I thought, “Maybe you aren’t doing enough to keep them.”
Later that week, I got an email from a woman with a Master of Science degree in health and wellness. She wanted to know how to reach truck drivers. I started putting these two events together.
We have a lot of problems in this industry. One of them is driver health. The turnover rate is another. These two problems feed off each other. We can change our way of thinking. If drivers accumulate benefits like health packages that include wellness over time, then drivers would have incentive to stay.
What if companies put their money where their mouths are and show they care? Start a wellness program. Drivers could get involved. When we are being recruited, ask about pay and wellness. Instead of asking if a company has health insurance, ask them if they have a wellness program.
The FMCSA Medical Review Board is getting ready to set BMI standards for sleep apnea testing. That could affect 30 percent of drivers. Companies are already complaining that they can’t find enough quality drivers. Instead of recruiting new ones, they will need to keep the ones that they have.
Health care costs can be reduced through wellness care. Health insurance companies are recognizing the value of wellness, and itis time for trucking companies and their drivers to do the same.
Communication in the trucking industry is becoming more impersonal. With electronic communication, a driver can go weeks without even hearing a voice from the company. If a trucking company had a wellness coach, drivers could have a real connection with the company. It would show the driver that the company does have the drivers’ long-term interest in mind. Maybe then it wouldn’t be too easy to just quit.
Jeff Clark is a trucker, a grandfather and an eight-time marathon (26.2 miles) finisher. He is dedicated to helping truckers improve their health through better habits. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or https://twitter.com/marathontrucker.