The industry is slowly transitioning from ‘Boomer’ to ‘Zoomer’.
More and more truck drivers from the Baby Boomer generation are retiring every day and Gen Z is now becoming old enough to fill the void left by boomers retiring.
However, truck driving is not a popular career choice among young people.
More people are retiring from the industry than entering it. This is leading to carriers everywhere having to compete with each other to attract Gen Z drivers to join their fleet.
Here are 5 steps to get Gen Z drivers into your trucks:
- Work on Building Your Social Media Presence
- Build Flexibility into Your Routes and Hometime
- Have Strong Organizational Values
- Invest in Your Driver’s Personal Development
- Show Them the Money
Generation Z is extremely online. The majority of people in this generation have had a social media presence for over half of their lives.
66% of Zoomers claim that social media is an essential part of their lives and 65% of the generation will see their usage increase this year.
78% of people in this generation report using social media to research companies they are interested in.
If you want to reach an audience of younger drivers, you must have a social media presence.
Gen Z expects you to have a social media presence. They will search for your company on social media whether or not you want them to.
One of the most important things when it comes to building a social media presence is to diversify the platforms you are on. Do not focus on any singular site. An overwhelming amount of people are on Facebook; however, YouTube, Twitter, Snapchat, and TikTok are increasing in popularity with Generation Z.
Spreading your influence across different platforms ensures you will reach young drivers with your content and hopefully persuade them to work for you.
Here is an example of the type of trucking content Generation Z is responding to on TikTok:
Build Flexibility into Your Routes and Hometime
People are quick to claim that Gen Z and even Millennials are lazy and entitled.
Younger people value workplace flexibility over things like title, pay, and status. Any research into Gen Z career paths and you will find stories of people who work late nights so they can surf in the morning or employees who live in the back of a van.
Young truck drivers will work just as hard for you as older drivers. But you need to give them some flexibility to live the life they want away from work.
Building flexibility into your positions and promoting that flexibility will help you get Gen Z drivers to apply and work for your company long-term.
Have Strong Organizational Values
Generation Z cares more about the values of their employer more than any other generation. They want to work for a company that shares their values and acts on them.
DO NOT tell young drivers your company has values that your company does not truly believe in. People will sniff out the inauthenticity and cross you off their list of places to work.
Having strong organizational values does not mean you need to become a social justice warrior.
Drivers from Generation Z do not need to see your executives online tying themselves to trees or partaking in month-long hunger strikes. They want to see a company that has 3-5 strong values and that the company acts on those values consistently.
Your organization’s values can be as simple as “Family comes before work” or “Employee health is our top priority”.
The key is that your values are authentic to your company and you act on your values.
Invest in Your Drivers’ Personal Development
Young drivers want to feel supported by the company they are driving for.
They do not want to be viewed as “meat-in-seat”. That type of mentality is the easiest way to guarantee you will not have any Gen Z drivers working for you.
One great way to invest in your drivers’ personal development is to help them improve and maintain their health. The Trucking Fitness Company is an online program to assist drivers’ health habits while on the road.
Paying for a membership with The Trucking Fitness Company sends a message to all of your drivers that you want them to live the best life possible.
Show Them the Money
Money talks, no matter how old you are.
Young people today grew up in the Great Recession and are now entering their adult years in an economy that feels like it can collapse any day. They witnessed their parents having to deal with a collapsed economy in 2008 and now have likely dealt first hand with COVID economic backlash.
Mix in the fact that student debt is at an all-time high and Generation Z knows the value of having money.
Promoting the fact that your drivers can earn a quality living with only a couple of years of experience will attract many young people to the career.
Zoomers need to know that truck driving is a lucrative career with great job security.
The Boomer to Zoomer transition is in full effect. Your company needs to stop using recruiting techniques that worked 20 years ago on the drivers who are entering the industry now. Follow these 5 steps to get Gen Z into your trucks and your company will thrive throughout this transition.
Looking for assistance attracting younger drivers to your fleet? Fill out the form below to speak with a Meramec Solutions specialist!