Trucking HR warns of looming labor shortages

by Today's Trucking

OTTAWA, Ont. – Truck drivers have faired better through the Covid-19 pandemic than the average Canadian worker, Trucking HR Canada said in a labor market update released Tuesday.

“Although unemployment spiked to record levels in May 2020 for all Canadian workers including transport truck drivers (13.8% and 14.1% respectively), there was a significantly faster recovery among truck drivers, whose unemployment rate fell to 3.9% in September, compared to 8.4 % for all occupations,” Trucking HR said.

“In October, the unemployment rate among truck drivers edged slightly higher, to 4.9% — still well below the unemployment rate of 8.1% across all occupations.”

Trucking HR

Trucking HR said the upward trend in employment is even higher than it had predicted, signalling that a return to pre-Covid labor shortages could happen sooner than anticipated.

The organization had forecast a shortage of more than 25,000 truck drivers by 2023.

It said all signs indicate that the pre-Covid predictions of vacancies will be realized, potentially sooner rather than later.

“This factor serves as an urgent call to action for industry and government to work together to overcome this labor shortage so as not to hinder economic recovery,” Trucking HR said.

Have your say

This is a moderated forum. Comments will no longer be published unless they are accompanied by a first and last name and a verifiable email address. (Today's Trucking will not publish or share the email address.) Profane language and content deemed to be libelous, racist, or threatening in nature will not be published under any circumstances.


  • There is no a shortage of truck drivers. If yes, how can carriers want only to hire experienced drivers. Look to Kijiji. Indeed. There are lots of conditions. at least 2years, must haves, blar blar blar. Only trashy carriers consider hiring beginners. But minimum wages or No- compensation especially AB. They wearing towels are greedy to get rookies. They want novice’s blood. If Government want to accept Foreigners, at least they must not issue LMIA to carriers to advertise hiring Foreigners with LMIA. Novices spend lots of money to take it.

  • Many truck drivers are doing security work sleep in their own bed. The security guard at the homeless shelter makes over $26.00 per hour plus time and half after 40 hours per week$100 dollars one week course to permits. We need minimum wages for all truck drivers based on years of experience.

  • That is why Trump claims “fake news” to most of media. Their reports bases on who pay them. Most of trucking associate in Canada represent carriers, not drivers. Carriers always want to cheap salves who never complain. Therefore, they prefer to hire foreign workers instead of local experience drivers. Good companies can’t survive, because lot of company don’t follow Labour Code, and only focus on how to make profits quickly. No one won in this trucking industry but few greedy owners who became super rich in a very short time. Drivers become salves due to hardly any carriers follow Labour Code and also public safety is under risk.

    • Where is this labor code for truckers?
      There is no guarantee of a salary, except for the minimum without overtime. Overtime – after 60 working hours, which no one pays, because the main thing is the minimum for working hours. Nobody pays wages for time at work.
      That is, if the driver left for six days, and during this time he worked 60 hours according to the logbook, then his salary according to the labor code should not be lower than the minimum, or about $ 660-700 !!!!!!
      That is, the rest of the time does not count.
      Therefore, if the driver worked 70 hours and earned $ 900, then it is already considered that he earned overtime and more.
      This is massive deception and discrimination !!!
      It is very unprofitable for companies to recognize drivers as professionals, and pay salaries for the time, because it is impossible to cheat and keep the salary of a decade at the same level!

  • There is no shortage of drivers !!! Stop lying about it, trying to get cheap labor from abroad !!! You need to prohibit the salary for miles, and pay as they pay for the work of everyone else. When time is paid and drivers’ salaries increase by at least 30%, then there will be no shortage of drivers !!!
    Truckers were making 0.42 cents a mile 14 years ago, and 0.48 today. that’s $ 600 more in 14 years !!! Taking into account the price index, wages fell by half !!! So where does the shortage of drivers come from, if salaries only fall and there are no prospects? !!! When there is a shortage of labor, salaries rise to attract people, and since incomes have dropped, then everything is fine!

  • Everyone else works about a 40 hour work week, give or take a few hours.
    Why are truck drivers expected to work up to a 70 hour work week with no compensation after 40 hours for the same money?
    Some places expect you to off load your truck as well when they have people standing around doing nothing and most are a heck of a lot younger than I am.
    When I asked about that, I was told it was an agreement between their company and the company whose cargo I carry.
    I’m caught in the middle as the driver. Far as I’m concerned, not my job to unload their stuff but I don’t get to call the shots.

  • A number of truck drivers are now working in nursing homes in various ways including covid screener, security and cleaners at least twice the minimum wage in Ontario plus at least 10 hours per week overtime. Truck drivers have many more options that pay more.

  • good luck getting anyone,bad hours often away from home, shit pay, driver facing cameras and looked down on by employers.this industry is shameful and second rate .that is why there is a shortage already.

  • First off there is no driver shortage so stop lying. All the federal government has to do is look at how many people hold a CDL compared to what the companies say. More CDL holders have gotten out of the industry after a few years of driving because of extremely low wages and the poor lifestyle. The trucking associations say they need twenty thousand drivers today, but it’s a safe guess that there are over forty thousand CDL holders that have left the industry to find work elsewhere. It’s cheaper to bitch to the federal government so they dump more taxpayers money into training then to man up and pay up the drivers wages. To the companies stop being the maggots that most of you are.