Training is tricky business, especially in an era where beverage distributors in virtually every U.S. city are dealing with a shortage of qualified CDL drivers. Finding them is hard enough. Keeping them is even harder. And when your operation invests in providing your delivery team with all of the world-class tools and techniques to keep them running on all cylinders, the last thing you want is to watch competing companies and industries poach your talent.
“This is an ever-increasing problem, especially in more urban areas where motor carriers have terminals or major companies may have distribution centers — such as Domino’s, Papa John’s, Panera, SysCo and other food suppliers,” says Steve Golladay, manager and owner of the supply chain logistics consultancy Total System Thinking Solutions. “Retention is becoming more difficult because you hire and then train a person for a CDL and they become a valued ‘commodity.’ Retention starts first with recruiting the right candidates, secondly by challenging the status quo of the job itself: ‘Are there ways to make the job more appealing and/or enabling expansion of the available labor pool?’”