A truckload operation that provides year-round consistent mileage and pay is a holy grail for drivers because it gives them more predictable cashflow. This in turn benefits the carrier because happier drivers are more loyal. But the seasonality of freight—especially related to the peak and valleys of holiday shopping— has made providing this type of working environment all but impossible for many trucking companies.
Con-way, the nation’s sixth largest transportation company, told FleetOwner that its truckload operation is different. Con-way Truckload, which is seeking team drivers, manages to eliminate the seasonality of freight levels and pay for its drivers thanks to the steady freight levels it moves on behalf of Con-way’s LTL operations.
Team drivers are generally among the toughest drivers to recruit because the relatively few that are available are highly sought after by linehaul operations, which are able to run the truck most of the day. However, Con-way Truckload’s ability to offer predictability in pay and mileage, as well as competitive compensation, gives it a significant leverage in recruiting team drivers, Clay Halla, president of Con-way Truckload told FleetOwner.
“Con-way Truckload was founded in 2004 for the purpose of providing linehaul for Conway LTL,” Halla said. “That’s how Conway Truckload was designed to run and that puts us in a very good position to offer what the drivers need.
“We need team drivers—two drivers and a tractor,” Halla continued. “We look for our more experienced teams who like to run lots of miles. Certainly the advantages are drop-and-hook freight—there is no loading and unloading of equipment. We also offer some long length of haul that allows drivers to [maximize their income].”
Additionally, Con-way Truckload said it offers other benefits to drivers:
- Compensation packages that compete with the largest truckload carriers
- Sign-on bonuses
- Driver referral bonuses
- Flexibility in providing routes to drivers, with some that keep the driver close to home and others that provide more miles and income
- New equipment that is comfortable and safe
These benefits have contributed to Con-way Truckload achieving “significantly better” turnover rates than the industry average, which was 121%, for linehaul drivers in large TL companies in the third quarter, according to the American Trucking Assns.
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