How Tech like Geotab ELD Is Affecting Truck Driver Jobs, Recruiting & Training
There has been a lot of talk about technology in the trucking industry in recent decades. Often, the conversation revolves around how automation and self-driving vehicles will affect driving jobs. For a list of reasons why demand for truck driver jobs isn’t likely to disappear anytime soon, read this article we published on the subject here at Nextran Truck Centers.
There is plenty of innovation influencing the trucking world that has nothing to do with self-driving technology, from trailer sensors and Geotab ELDs (electronic logging devices) to other Internet-of-things devices. See how technology is enhancing job performance, recruitment and training strategies in the trucking world.
Improving Truck Driver Job Performance with Technology
As technology breaks new ground, big data and machine learning continue to affect more aspects of our daily lives than we realize. The reality is that these technologies can improve business operations, employee performance, driver safety and job satisfaction.
Engine control modules (ECMs) receive data from many parts of the truck to monitor and report everything from electrical problems to sudden deceleration events. Products like the Geotab ELD monitor and record Hours of Service (HOS) compliance information, including Records of Duty Status (RODS) and Driver Vehicle Inspection Reports (DVIR). These soon-to-be universal features ensure reliable data capture via cloud software, allowing fleet managers to easily view large volumes of data all in one place.
With the power of data, analysts can see which drivers have the best fuel efficiency, braking habits, speed management, lane keeping and more. They can also see where every piece of equipment is at any given time and create risk profiles for drivers. Analyzing data patterns tells them how to make their trucking operations more efficient—more efficient than we could imagine if we didn’t have the technology.
How Technology Can Transform Driver Training
One area where technology still stands to be useful is truck driver training. Companies often have trucks outfitted with the most advanced technology, but their training processes still rely heavily on paper. Because cloud data (test scores, attendance records, etc.) allows for a comprehensive view of information, instructors and training program specialists will be able to pinpoint key areas where they can make immediate improvements. For example, standardizing testing online and tracking attendance information digitally can:
- Eliminate the need to hunt down files from multiple sources
- Reveal comprehension levels so instructors can see who needs more help
- Show disparities in instructor effectiveness (if students have different teachers but take the same test)
- Help measure the effectiveness of the material (if most people miss the same questions, there may be a better way to present the subject matter)
Technological innovations have been employed across the trucking industry with great success, but training programs are often overlooked. Many companies and government entities are now answering the call to digitize the process.
Digital Technology’s Increasing Role in Driver Recruitment
According to the Bureau of Labor statistics, the average age of a truck driver is 55. For years, quality truck driver jobs have gone unfilled, and a lack of interest in the well-established career path among younger workers hasn’t helped. Despite highly competitive benefits (flexible home time, college tuition reimbursement, etc.), many companies have simply not been able to reach a younger recruitment pool. But digital technology may be the answer.
It’s no secret that millennials do just about everything on their smartphones. That’s why businesses stand a much better chance of recruiting young candidates for driving jobs if they meet them where they are. The following three examples demonstrate how technology is helping recruiters reach a younger talent pool that could be the antidote to the transportation industries hiring woes:
- Virtual job fairs: The COVID-19 pandemic only accelerated what was already becoming a trend in the recruiting word. Virtual hiring events offer a low stakes way for interested candidates to learn more about an employer.
- Augmented reality tools: Companies are developing augmented reality tools and mobile apps that can instantaneously transport smartphone users to a truck yard or an office building where current employees and professional drivers can describe their professional experiences as if they were standing in the same room.
- AI screening for interviews: Artificial intelligence tools can screen drivers for certain criteria and then allow qualified candidates to automatically book appointments, saving time and manpower while ensuring the highest quality leads.
Contact Nextran Truck Centers for All Your Truck, Parts & Service Needs
With 18 locations across the Southeast, Nextran Truck Centers is more than just your heavy-duty truck dealer or high-quality parts and service provider. We’re your partner for every leg of the journey to help keep you on the road. That includes keeping you up to date on the latest technological developments affecting the transportation and trucking industry as a whole. To learn more about maximizing your fleet’s resources with brands like Mack Trucks, VolvoTrucks, Ford or Isuzu, contact Nextran Truck Centers today.