In It For the Long Haul: Challenges of the Trucking and Transportation Industry

By: Emily Klaus | Marketing Associate

Talk about an underappreciated industry! When we think about how our packages get to us, we usually think of the tracking link we received in an email, and not about the people driving the truck and making that link relevant. Whether you’re driving your packages or cargo from business to business, it’s no easy feat being on the road all the time. Truckers, we hear you! Here are some of the biggest challenges facing the trucking and transportation industry.

Driver and Employee Shortages

You read that right. Even though it seems like large semis are all over the roads, there’s actually a severe shortage of truck drivers. Despite increased pay (although according to some studies, not proportional to inflation rates) and additional retention initiatives, the trucker turnover rate was at 96% at the beginning of 2015. Unfortunately for the industry, the economy is only growing, so we can expect the problems to continue.

Regulations and licenses for truck drivers are also contributing to this shortage. The cost of the training depends on state determination and the type of school you attend, but this can range from $3,000 to $10,000. That’s pretty expensive if there’s no guarantee you’ll be hired on. Fortunately, some companies will hire you on and pay for your training.

Rising Equipment Costs

Again, due the growing economy, companies need more trucks on the road. Unfortunately, this means more expenses for the companies: buying more rigs, supplying the fleet with fuel, and the cost of repairing a broken truck are just a few of the expenses a company can expect to shell out.

The price volatility of the fuel needed for the trucks is also a big challenge and a rising cost. Although fuel may be cheaper one month, it can go up in price rapidly and without warning. Often, companies are stretched thin financially because of the up and down of fuel prices. This is where a merchant cash advance from Jet Capital can help. We understand that cash flows don’t always meet business needs. Apply for up to $100,000 today at localhost/JClocalhost/JC!

Healthcare and Benefits

To attract more drivers, some companies were offering larger salaries and huge sign-on bonuses in addition to great benefits. However, while the demand for truckers is high, the supply pool is not. Healthcare is one of the main attractions to prospective employees, which is why transportation employers tend to offer generous packages, but those packages are costing the employers dearly. Thus, in recent years, health benefits for truckers are not as extensive as they used to be, which is a big issue for these employees.

Overall, truck drivers don’t have the best health. Many are sedentary for 10+ hours a day, eating quick, unhealthy meals and not getting nearly enough sleep. These conditions are a breeding ground for long-term health problems. This will eventually force the drivers to file health-related insurance claims, which may or may not be covered by their insurance. The challenge as a company is finding a way to balance your employee benefits costs with your always-rising expenses.

Jet Capital is here as a trusted resource for the transportation and trucking industry. For more information and resources regarding this industry, please see the list we’ve compiled below:


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