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How Efficient is Your Driver Recruiting Process?

Are you efficient at managing your leads? You might say “yes” or “no” or you might not be sure. But the real proof of whether you are or not is in the number of hires you are able to produce. Even if you have the tightest, most buttoned-up recruiting process, changes and advancements in the trucking industry will never stop creating room for improvement.

No fleet turns 100% of their leads into hires. That means there is always a percentage of leads lost throughout the recruiting process. So how can you reduce the number of lost leads?

Before we answer that question, you need to be able to identify where you are losing leads. It helps to walk through the process of turning a lead into a hire and examine its moving parts. A common way to break down the truck driver recruiting process is with the conversion lifecycle. Every fleet experiences the conversion lifecycle with each lead. So let’s take a look at the lifecycle phases:

Generate a lead.

Make initial contact with the driver.

Determine whether to prioritize a the driver based on their interest level.

Hire the driver.

Recruiting Conversion Lifecycle

Using the conversion lifecycle, let’s take a look at how leads can be lost during your recruiting process by plugging in hypothetical numbers:

According to the diagram above, you’re losing a percentage of leads at each step of the process for reasons like drivers not responding when contacted, drivers not qualifying, orientation no-shows, and so on. You may be thinking “this is normal.” But when you lay it out like this, it is easy to see the substantial difference between the 10,000 (hypothetical) leads you start with and the 300 (hypothetical) hires you end up with.

So with that visual in mind, I think we can agree that there is, indeed, room for improvement. To get more hires, you have to convert more leads. To convert more leads, you need to become more efficient in your recruiting process. So where do you start? So how do you go about increasing efficiency within the phases of the conversion lifecycle? Let’s take a look at some solutions.
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Increasing Efficiency in Your Recruiting Process

Target Phase

Common IneffienciesSolutions
  • Leads not captured in ATS

  • Leads not assigned to a recruiter

  • Leads not attributed to a source
  • Test applications across all media to expose errors in the ATS lead attribution (e.g. wrongly sourced leads, wrongly assigned leads, etc.)
  • Utilize a qualifying center
  • Routinely check unassigned lead board
  • Frequently update ATS routing guide

Connect Phase

Common IneffienciesSolutions
  • 35-40% of all leads are unreached

  • Recruiters spend only 33% of their time actively recruiting

  • Too slow to contact prospective drivers after acquiring lead information
  • Automate routine tasks (e.g. use automated emails or text to instantly respond to new applicants)
  • Utilize a qualifying center
  • Take advantage of local presence dialing and voicemail features
  • Define roles within your team (e.g. have someone qualifying drivers and quickly passing the lead to recruiters

Engage Phase

Common IneffienciesSolutions
  • 55-60% of leads are disqualified
  • Recruiters are unsure of who to call next
  • Unqualified leads take up recruiters’ time
  • Nuture leads to make sure they’re qualified
  • To point recruiters to who to call next use:
    • Source conversion rate
    • Manager-defined queues
    • Reminders and task lists
    • Calendar notifications
  • Use lead scoring to avoid wasting time on unqualified leads
  • Take detailed notes to weight a driver’s interest

Engage/Convert Phase

Common IneffienciesSolutions
  • 80-85% of qualified leads don’t get scheduled for orientation
  • Calls are either too short or too long
  • Poor follow-up
  • Make sure recruiters stay up-to-date on new techniques and tactics
  • Improve call times with recruiter coaching
  • Improve poor follow-up with:
    • Scheduled tasks
    • Calendar items
    • Encouraging notes
    • File auditing

Convert Phase

Common IneffienciesSolutions
  • 15-20% scheduled for orientation fail to attend

  • 15-20% of orientation attendees are not hired

  • High turnover rate
  • Feature introductions from leadership to encourage attendance
  • Complete more of the hiring process prior to orientation
  • Create an enjoyable orientation experience

  • Track top disqualification reasons to screen unqualified leads prior to future orientations

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Focus Your Efforts on One Area

The information above might tempt you to work on improving your entire recruiting process all at once, but the reality is that you do not have the time and effort to do it all. All you need is to make a tiny improvement in one area and you’ll produce more hires. The question is which area should you focus on? To answer that question, let’s take a look at how many hires you can produce if you increase efficiency by as little as 5% in different areas. Keeping the conversion lifecycle diagram above in mind, let’s calculate:
Based on a 5% increase…

  • Orientation show rate: 18 additional hires
  • Orientation attendance to hire rate: 18 additional hires
  • Contact rate: 25 additional hires
  • Qualified lead rate: 35 additional hires
  • Scheduled for orientation rate: 90 additional hires

The answer is obvious. The area of scheduling drivers for orientation produces the most hires when improved. So this is where you should put your focus. Focus on the area you have the most control over. When it comes to speaking directly with drivers, the skill of your recruiters plays a bigger part here than any other area.

Start by improving that area, and you’ll see some of the greatest increases in your number of hires.

It is not easy to avoid losing leads, especially when the reason you lost them is unclear. You have no control over a driver’s choice. But what you do have control over is your side of the conversation: the recruiting process. So you need to make the best of your process.

As you saw earlier, even a 5% increase in efficiency in just one area of your process leads to more hires. Increase efficiency in your recruiting process little by little and you will see an increase in your success.

To get started, you can plug your numbers into our recruiting efficiency formula to get an idea of where your recruiting efforts currently are efficiency-wise.