If you haven’t heard by now, the United States shipping industry is in the midst of a serious truck driver shortage. Building over the course of the last fifteen years, it’s starting to make an impact on the daily expenses of American consumers with few viable solutions in sight. In today’s post, we’ll dive further into its causes and effects, as well as ways Visa Solutions is working to remedy the situation from multiple angles.
A whopping 70% of all American freight is delivered by truck for an estimated revenue of $719 billion in 2017. Although flashy new-age themes like delivery drones and same day shipping garner media coverage, long-distance trucking remains the critical artery in which the American
Long haul trucking requires refined technical skill and a limitless attention span. It’s also best learned on the job as opposed to in a classroom, an increasingly rare trait for careers in the internet-age. Certain experience and mileage milestones must be met in order for a driver to qualify for advanced jobs. Like any highly specialized industry, experienced professionals are well compensated for their expertise. The average salary for a career truck driver is approaching $100k annually and rising, with bonuses and perks more common than ever. Willing and qualified talent, though, remains scarce. Millennials have shown little interest in the trucking lifestyle, especially for a generation beleaguered by student debt and career limitations elsewhere in the professional sphere. The idea of instant gratification is an overriding post-2000 theme that young people have come to expect in every aspect of life. It’s a concept that seldom applies in long haul shipping, a world where patience and practice carry extreme value and always will. This culture gap is widening
by the day.
The pool of established and credentialed drivers is draining as the baby boomer workforce dwindles. Retirement and an exorbitantly high turnover rate for new hires have resulted in a shortage of an estimated 50 thousand drivers, putting a financial strain on the economy.
As a result of the talent shortage, and other factors, the overall cost of shipping is now estimated to grow at a rate of 7% a year . This figure is not one that can be ignored. Major retailers are taking action. Amazon, for example, has made noticeable increases to the price of their popular Prime 2-day shipping program in recent years, speculated to be a reaction, at least
in part, to rising shipping rates. Google, Tesla, and other tech giants are working on autonomous trucks, but they’re still years away from addressing the problem on a meaningful scale.
Luckily, an even more powerful body — the federal government — has taken its own steps to remedy the shortage. With the EB-3 Permanent Labor Certification and H-2B Visa programs, American businesses are given expanded freedoms to hire international talent to fill lynchpin domestic job openings in challenged markets. The shipping industry is one of the main intended beneficiaries of these programs, further demonstrating the seriousness of the driver shortage.
Immigration laws can be tricky, though. Visa Solutions is proud to work in-step with all three sides of these impactful specialty hires: employers, drivers, and government agencies. Our team of global recruiting specialists scout and screen international talent for qualifying shipping companies within these programs, accounting for each step in the process.
Shipping companies, especially amid the shortage, have more than enough work to deal with on a day-to-day basis than to be taxed with the burden of global recruiting. With Visa Solutions, positions aren’t just filled, they’re filled with eager and qualified professionals, excited to start a new life and lucrative career in America. For this reason, new hires made with the guidance of Visa Solutions carry a sterling retention rate and performance record.
The American truck driver shortage is a complicated problem caused by shifts in the economic and social norms of our society. Complex problems often require complex solutions. Visa Solutions’ end-to-end service smoothes out complexities associated with legal green card recruiting and hiring, making it easier for both shipping companies and international workers to drive full speed toward success.
- On March 12, 2019
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