Are Independent, Contracted Drivers The Way Out of the Nationwide Labor Shortage?

The capacity crunch on workers that’s staggered commerce throughout the world isn’t slowing down any time soon. According to a report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of people quitting their jobs was at a record high of 10.4 million by the end of September 2021, as opposed to just 6.5 million people being hired in that same period. This “Great Resignation” has led people to look for consistent, higher-paying jobs that offer more dynamic, worker-oriented schedules that they can see themselves doing for a long time to come.

“drivers are flocking to these options while leaving employee-driver programs”

In particular, the labor shortage has significantly impacted the logistics industry’s ability to attract and retain delivery drivers. In October 2021, the American Trucking Association reported a shortage of 80,000 drivers, and estimated that number will double by 2030. Without steady access to high quality drivers, your customers will suffer from slower, lower quality service. And as supply chain bottlenecks continue along with rising inflationary costs, you’re caught in twin dilemmas: paying more for service that often fails to meet customer demand.

This is where the largest companies in the United States have adopted the Uber model to tackle the driver shortage head-on. Instacart, Doordash, AmazonFlex, Shipt, and many other “sharing economy” drivers are flocking to these options while leaving employee-driver programs, and businesses are feeling some relief from employee driver shortage pressure via contracted drivers. Their drivers have flexible schedules, more control over earning potential, and faster on-boarding (which is the biggest selling point for many businesses right now). But these businesses and independent driver programs were not designed for transporting high-value, bulky, or large quantities of packages. 

Outsourcing final mile delivery to a proven final mile service like USPack, to specifically address the driver labor shortage, can reduce the strains of capacity crunch while also providing your customers with high-quality delivery experiences. Here’s the value that outsourcing final mile logistics can mean for making sure you have the capacity you need in 2022 and beyond.

Automating hiring workflows yields high quality and greater predictability

In an era fraught with unpredictability all across your supply chain, it’s one less burden to know that when it’s time for your goods to go out your doors and into your customers’ hands, you have the quality drivers and capacity you need. With the most efficient driver recruitment workflow in the industry, backed by our proprietary technology, USPack can help alleviate worries about capacity and on-time delivery.

Sourcing better candidates through technology and experience

Capacity is directly linked to having drivers, plain and simple. Professionally-driven processes are the key to sourcing sufficient top-quality drivers. What does a professional process look like? Here are a few questions you should be asking your in-house team (if you use an in-house network) or your logistics provider:

  • Where are you sourcing candidates from? How efficient is your sourcing process? 
  • What does the screening process look like? Does it include background checks and drug testing?
  • How repeatable is the process at the scale your business requires? 
  • For every driver that is contracted, how many are vetted and what’s the close ratio?

USPack’s dedicated recruitment team has a full suite of resources to provide pre-qualified candidates for our field operations. We screen, background check, and drug test each candidate to assess whether they’re a strong fit before they ever get behind the wheel. Our time-tested and proven recruitment model is one of the most advanced in the industry, and a far better predictor of long-term success than any used by crowdsourcing companies. 

Our driver contracting is powered by our proprietary technology, which enables us to cast a wider net for candidates and realize faster and more efficient results. Our contracting approach, refined through decades of experience, is repeatable at any scale of operation.

Delivering superior service and retaining drivers through better conditions

Attracting great drivers is one thing, but keeping them is another. With our decades of experience, we know first-hand that a driver’s daily environment is directly correlated to the quality of service they can deliver (no pun intended) and how long they stay with a company. It’s why we make a concerted effort to create an atmosphere where drivers are valued. 

“drivers have flexible schedules, more control over earning potential, and faster on-boarding”

We strongly believe in welcoming a diverse talent pool, and providing drivers with stable hours and a sustainable potential income. On average, USPack independent contractor drivers earn significantly more in a week than crowdsourced food delivery drivers.  When drivers have greater commitment, they form relationships with the people at your final destinations, giving rise to fulfilling delivery experiences on both sides and strengthening your brand image.

These better conditions, which are extremely instrumental in retaining drivers, are a direct result of our highly reliable hiring model—delivering organizational efficiencies that make operations smoother and bringing in more revenue per driver.  Independent contractor drivers can earn more than employee drivers by servicing multiple customers.

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