According to findings from the latest truck driver pay survey undertaken by the American Trucking Associations (ATA); the standard driver pay inclusive of additional work benefits, increased to a figure of almost 58,000 dollars.
This is an increase of more than 6,000 dollars from the previous similar survey done in 2017. This represented an increase in the haul driver
pay by more than 11 percent.
Additionally, trucking companies were giving out attractive hiring bonuses and enticing work benefits to attract new and retain the experienced haulers.
This is amid a nationwide shortage. What do these findings mean to the transporter and anyone aspiring to join this industry in general? The following points seek to answer that question adequately.
Huge pay Incentive:
These survey findings, from the trucker’s perspective, imply that you are set to earn more money from the increased salary rise and additional improved work benefit perks.
Most trucking companies are offering haulers, an additional payment to retain their services given their short supply in the industry. Therefore, as a driver, you are guaranteed salary increases as your work experience grows.
Also, you’re average earning potential is $58,000 annually by working in the trucking industry. Compared to other careers, this is a huge financial incentive for individuals aspiring to make more money.
A majority of trucking companies are offering attractive key job-related benefits to their employees as a means of attracting both new and talented drivers.
The following are some of the benefits that you will be entitled to as a truck driver:
• Paid family leave of up to 3 months is provided if you are a driver working for a company with less than 500 employees. According to the Department of Labor regulations, they will be eligible for this benefit if they have been in employment for more than 30 days.
Furthermore, if you are unable to work because you need to look after children who are out of school or whose caregiver is unavailable as a result of a public emergency like COVID-19.
• Comprehensive insurance coverage will be provided to you by the trucking company. This benefit will be accorded to you, for protection against the inherent risks associated with the trucking profession.
As a driver, you are predisposed towards acquiring certain health conditions as a result of long working hours, smoking, staying seated for long periods, and consumption of unhealthy diets.
You are also prone to serious road accidents and lifestyle diseases such as obesity, cancer, lung diseases, heart ailments, or death. Therefore, to cushion you against all these occupational risks, trucking companies have in place several options that include medical insurance, accidental death, and associated medical expenses, disability coverage, dental & vision coverage, among others.
• Contributory retirement plans are available by trucking companies to their employees. Also, by contributing to a company supported retirement program, provided you are over the age of 18, you will be entitled to take advantage of the ‘retirement savings contributions credit’.
credit is set at $1,000 for singles and at $2,000 for those who are married. Also, this further qualifies you to claim a plan offering free income tax preparation programs to taxpayers with an adjusted gross income of below $66,000.
• Paid vacations and sick leave of up to two weeks are also provided by fleet companies. The companies realize that as a hauler, you need to be alert and healthy to optimally execute your responsibilities.
Therefore, vacations and days off from work to attend to sickness will be provided to you.
• Reimbursements of tuition costs that you incurred while undergoing training at the truck driving school will be facilitated either partially or wholly by the hiring truck driving company.
Trucking companies will offer you a bonus for signing on as one of their employees. This is a recruitment strategy
which was implicated to attract more drivers to both the company and the industry in general; given the shortage of haulers.
These bonuses, however, are tied to your ability to achieve set targets like clocking a specified mileage.
If you are wondering why this is the case, the answer logically lies in the fact that giving out the full bonus outright will lead to the haulers moving to other companies offering huge benefits.
Consequently, it defeats the purpose of the incentives. Bonuses are also offered for distance traveled, hauling of certain tonnage, a good safety record, and long employment service.
The trucking industry incidentally is not the only one using the approach of bonuses to boost recruitment figures. The military has also been successfully adopting the same strategy for recruitment.
Your job as a conveyer is guaranteed given the existing mismatch between the fleet industry’s massive demand for haulers and the supply of the same. Therefore, your position as a hauler will always be available as long as your safety record is clean and you are experienced.
Middle-Class Lifestyle Route:
Given the occurrence of the COVID-19 pandemic and its resulting long term economic impact uncertainty; a truck driving career is seen as a route towards a middle-class American lifestyle for the millions who have been rendered jobless this year.
Thus, it follows that a trucking career enables you to earn more money through the increased compensation which in turn allows you to save and enjoy the middle-class lifestyle despite the presence of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Relevance in modern-day society:
The shortage of truck men within the industry is forecasted to double in the coming decade. As a result, there will definitely be more hauler vacancies to be filled. Consequently, ensuring that your skills and experience remain relevant in modern-day society will secure your position.
This also means that your career as a freighter will not be rendered obsolete by technological advancements the way other careers like postal workers have been overridden.
Aspiring haulers, job prospects within the trucking industry have been increased even further by the decision to hire more young individuals. Former military employees, women, and minorities were favored in this decision.
Comparison with other careers:
Generally speaking, truck driving as a career affords you huge benefits. This is compared to other careers
within the economy like the military, police, and teaching. A military conveyer can earn an average total pay of 40,000 dollars inclusive of bonuses and additional compensation.
While a truck driver in the freight industry can earn over 58,000 dollars. This shows that you could earn better pay working as a hauler in the civilian world than a hauler in the military.
The same was observed for a comparison with the police and teachers. Their average pay inclusive of bonuses and added work compensation was found to be less than private-sector truckers.
Thus, getting employed as a trucker means you will earn more than what teachers and police earn in terms of pay and increased compensation.
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