7 Questions Trucking Companies Must Ask About an Applicant Tracking System

Small carriers may be able to operate and recruit truck drivers without an ATS. However, as companies grow to be mid-sized and beyond they need to purchase an ATS to manage their driver applications. Here are the 7 questions trucking companies must ask about an applicant tracking system.

7 questions to ask:

  1. What is the Price of This System?
  2. Can You Use it to Contact Potential Truck Drivers?
  3. Will you be Able to Speed up Your Process? 
  4. How Easy is it to Use?
  5. Does the ATS Provide any other Tools?
  6. Can You Easily Visualize Past Data?
  7. Can Your Driver Recruiting Agency Send Leads to the ATS?

What is the Price of This System?

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This question may be the most obvious of all seven questions. Of course, you are going to try and figure out the price of any new system you need to purchase.

However,

There are many different pricing models used by companies. Pricing models include:

  • Cost per user
  • Cost per number of employees
  • Cost per hire
  • Cost per feature
  • A flat fee charged either monthly, quarterly, or yearly

Before you sign any contract, make sure to read the fine print. Some companies are going to try and charge you for things like support and employee training.

Can You Use it to Contact Potential Truck Drivers?

If the answer to this question is “no”, then you need to find another ATS.

Being able to communicate with truck driver applicants via the ATS makes the process significantly easier. Things like unread emails and missed phone calls will be reduced significantly if you can communicate through your ATS

Also, being able to contact drivers through the ATS is going to allow you to reduce the time from application to first contact. The moment the application hits your ATS you will be able to call the truck driver.

The faster you can call driver applicants, the higher your conversion rate will be.

Will you be Able to Speed up Your Process?

In addition to speeding up your time to contact new applicants, your ATS needs to speed up the other steps of your process.

The ATS needs to allow you to collect and file paperwork, collaborate with fellow recruiters, keep the driver informed, and facilitate background checks.

How Easy is it to Use?

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An applicant tracking system is not good if none of the employees in the company know how to use it.

Also, keep in mind that some companies may charge you for company training sessions. So if you purchase an ATS that is too complicated and you need multiple training sessions, it can become quite expensive.

On the flip side of that, an ATS that is too simple may not provide all of the features you need. Think of yourself as Goldilocks looking for the “just right” amount of complexity.

Does the ATS Provide any Other Tools? 

Many applicant tracking systems are great at helping you keep track of new applicants and getting people hired. However, some ATSs offer features that go above and beyond.

If you have a large budget and can afford these extra features, they can come in handy.

Tenstreet, for example, offers applications that allow carriers to market to drivers, track their applications, hire them, and make sure the driver is following safety guidelines.

Can you Easily Visualize Past Data?

Looking back at past data is essential to any effective recruitment campaign. Your ATS should enable you to look at past results and see what works.

The truck driver recruiting strategy your company uses needs to be constantly evolving. Strategy evolves by analyzing the data of past campaigns and responding to the market.

If your ATS does not allow you to easily create visuals that depict past campaigns it may be tough to figure out what is working and what is not.

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Can Your Driver Recruiting Agency Send Leads to the ATS?

What good is your applicant tracking system if your driver recruiting agency can not submit applicants to it? If you have to submit the applications by hand after they are sent to you by the agency, you are losing valuable time.

Having a truck driver recruiting agency run your digital advertising and sending the leads they generate to your ATS is the most efficient way to get applicants.

A process where your digital driver recruiting agency feeds leads into your ATS for your recruiters to contact is best. This allows recruiters to focus on recruiting and not worry about anything else.

If you are a small carrier looking to expand into a mid-sized carrier, you will undoubtedly need an ATS. Use the 7 questions trucking companies must ask about an applicant tracking system to ensure you get the right ATS for your growth.

How to Use the Driver Shortage as an Advantage

The driver shortage is the largest issue facing the transportation industry today. According to the ATA in 2018 the trucking industry was short 60,800 drivers. If the current trends hold, the shortage may rise to over 160,000 by 2028. From a bird’s eye view, the driver shortage is a major issue that needs to be addressed. However on a local level, carriers can use the shortage as a tool to beat out competition. Implementing top notch recruiting strategies will enable your company to hire quality drivers instead of your competition.

Getting Ahead of the Competition

The best way to illustrate how a company can benefit from the driver shortage is through a hypothetical situation. In this hypothetical situation let’s say that there is a city with 3 trucking companies and 20 qualified drivers.

Each company has 10 trucks to fill, but obviously there are not enough drivers for each company to fill their trucks. Companies 1 & 3 have been around for decades and decide to use the same recruiting strategies that have always worked for them. They post help wanted ads around town, attend job fairs, and implement a referral program. These efforts produce some results and Companies 1 & 3 are able to successfully hire 5 drivers each. Company 2 on the other hand, is a relatively new company and they decide that old recruiting strategies were not effective enough. Company 2 decides to implement digital based recruiting strategies, offer a higher pay for drivers, and reorganizes the company structure to maximize efficiency. These changes in the recruiting process are highly effective and Company 2 successfully recruits the remaining 10 drivers.

Now that Company 2 has enough qualified drivers to fill all of their trucks, they are avoiding all the necessary costs that come along with idle trucks. Also, Company 2 is doubling the revenue that Companies 1 & 3 are earning. While Companies 1 & 3 are struggling, Company 2 is thriving which leads to them earning more business from local brokers. Eventually, if the trend continues, Company 2 will be able to buy out Companies 1 & 3.

Company 2 adapted to the times and used strategies that their competition were not using. The combination of effective recruiting and the driver shortage lead to Company 2 doubling in size and eliminating its hypothetical competition.

Becoming Company 2

It is safe to say that everyone wants to be Company 2 in the above hypothetical. That is a lot easier said than done. In order to be Company 2 you need to be better at recruiting and retention than your competition. Digital marketing recruitment strategies, such as geofencing, are far more effective than traditional recruiting strategies. If your company is not maximizing digital strategies then you need to bring in an agency that is highly skilled in this area. Dedicate one team to using digital strategies that fill your applicant pool and a separate team that focuses on recruiting.

The driver shortage is the number one threat facing the transportation industry as a whole. However, that is not the case on the local level. A company that recruits better than its competition will benefit from the shortage. That company will employ the majority of qualified drivers and outperform competing companies. Implementing digital strategies and reorganizing the recruiting structure will set your company up to use the Driver Shortage to your advantage.