Employee referrals are hugely helpful for recruiting, especially in the trucking industry, where turnover rates are high. According to Zippia research, referrals make up nearly half of internal hires. For example, if your fleet has 20 drivers, that means nine drivers came from referrals — no small amount.

Referrals can also help increase quality hires, boost retention rates, and save money on cost-per-hire and turnover. However, you might struggle to get the kind of referrals that will help your company thrive.

Here are some powerful tips for increasing good truck driver referrals and enjoying the benefits we mentioned above.

1. Build a Strong Employee Referral Program

For most companies, a referral program is an obvious solution to boosting referrals. While this isn’t the only option (as you’ll see below), it is a powerful way to get quality employees through word-of-mouth.

Here’s how a referral program works: Instead of using traditional hiring methods like posting on job boards, you turn to your current employees. They can recommend people they know who might be good additions to your team. If the referral leads to a new hire, you reward the employee who gave you the referral.

Referral programs help your company by:

  • Building a strong, positive image of your work culture
  • Creating advocates for your company and culture
  • Ultimately saving you money on cost-per-hire
  • Increasing retention rates
  • Showing appreciation for your current drivers

Make your referral program as straightforward as possible for your current drivers. For example, have one recruiter as the primary contact for drivers to refer people. You could also set up a referral page on your website where the new driver can easily submit their information.

Also, think about making the referral process fun for drivers by turning it into a contest. Drivers can compete with one another to see who gets the most referrals.

The reward could be a cash bonus, extra PTO, or a special trip or event for the driver who wins. Don’t be afraid to get creative with it!

How Much Should a Truck Driver Referral Bonus Be?

Every company is different, but referral bonuses are typically somewhere in the range of $500 to $1,500. Some companies give referring employees extra PTO or other rewards instead of cash.

Think about what you can pay for a referral program to be worth it. What will make your current drivers excited about recommending new people?

2. Offer the Best Possible Candidate Experience

Besides an employee referral program for your fleet, there are other ways to maximize the number of referrals you get.

For example, you can (and should) treat driver candidates well. Make the recruitment and hiring process smooth, responsive, and even enjoyable. Be honest with candidates about the status of their application, and don’t leave people waiting to hear back from you.

Treating candidates right will help you develop an excellent reputation. Even if someone interviews with you and doesn’t get the job, if they felt respected and excited about your opportunity, they might still recommend you to other driver candidates. You’ll naturally get more referrals just from offering a good experience!

3. Send Out Employee Surveys

Happy drivers are more likely to make quality referrals. So, you deploy employee surveys to find out what’s working for your drivers — and what’s not. Then, you can make changes that provide a better work environment and, ultimately, encourage drivers to refer people to your company.

4. Feature Star Employees and Share Testimonials

It’s one thing to talk all day about how awesome your company is; it’s another to have other people back you up. Find ways to showcase positive employee experiences and the pros of working for you.

Ask your best drivers to share testimonials about their experiences with your company. Written testimonials on your website and company social media profiles work great, and video testimonials can be even better.

5. Show Up at Relevant Events

Lastly, attend local job fairs, trade shows, and community events where you can get in front of the community and drivers. You’ll build brand awareness while showcasing the positives about your company and encouraging more referrals.

Each of these tips can help bring great drivers to your team. If you need hands-on help improving your driver recruitment strategies, contact AMG Driver Recruitment today!

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