Most millennial truckers looking to leave: report

OTTAWA, ON – Trucking industry recruiters are looking for ways to attract new millennial-aged workers, but droves of existing workers under the age of 35 are already thinking about leaving.

Seventy-five percent of drivers between the ages of 18 and 35, averaging six years of experience, plan to leave within five years or aren’t sure they will stay, according to Trucking HR Canada’s new Millennials Have Drive report. Referenced reasons include the lack of pension, benefits, advancement potential, or respect from customers. They are dissatisfied with long hours, rising costs, wages, the desire for self-employment and the need for a work-life balance.

The challenges are not limited to drivers. Thirty-six percent of non-drivers between 18 and 35 plan to leave in the next five years because of few opportunities for women to advance, health and wellness issues, high stress, unsatisfactory working conditions, and wages and benefits versus hours worked. They’re also looking for ways to align careers with personal morals and values.

It’s a troubling finding given that millennials represent 37% of Canada’s workforce, while just 15% of today’s truck drivers are under 35.

“With the industry’s growing labor needs, Canada’s trucking employers need to be prepared to welcome this generation into the workplace,” said Isabelle H├ętu, Trucking HR Canada’s director – programs and services.

Some fleets are doing better than others. The majority of fleets (77%) recognized through Trucking HR Canada’s Top Fleet Employers program have one in five drivers under 35, with overall turnover rates below 22%. In contrast, only 50% of surveyed employers have a plan to recruit and retain the younger workers.

The tools to attract the younger generation will sound familiar. Millennials are looking for secure jobs, the ability to use technology, and the opportunities to receive ongoing feedback, coaching, mentoring and recognition, according to the report.

Trucking HR Canada recommends six ways to attract, recruit and retain young employees:

  1. Review and update current recruitment approaches and strategies
  2. Review and refresh your corporate culture
  3. Review compensation structures and strategies
  4. Consider mutually beneficial, flexible work opportunities
  5. Provide and promote opportunities for professional development
  6. Implement coaching and mentoring opportunities

For a copy of the full report, visit


John G. Smith is the editorial director of Newcom Media's trucking and supply chain publications -- including Today's Trucking,, TruckTech, Transport Routier, Inside Logistics, Waste & Recycling, and Road Today. The award-winning journalist has covered the trucking industry since 1995.

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