When it comes to the trucking business, if there is one thing we can all agree on, it’s the fact that the industry has been pretty slow in embracing changes. From relying on paper logs to running on dated technology; for the longest time, there were multiple instances where the industry had not stepped up to make the most of the perks of the modern era.

However, all that is a thing of the past now. In the past few years, the trucking industry has undergone a major transformation. The arrival of new technology, rules, and policies have replaced out-of-date practices and norms. 

Even though a section of the industry is still on the way to embracing these changes, many in the business have already made the shift.

So, what are these obsolete practices in the trucking business that need to be replaced ASAP? Let’s find out!

1. The Inability To Offer Enough Perks To Entice New Drivers

The trucking companies need professional drivers in large numbers as there is a huge amount of freight to be moved. But, getting new drivers has been quite a challenge for the past few years.

The changing outlook of the younger generation, along with the ELD and paperwork restrictions, has made it difficult for businesses to recruit new drivers to replace the senior truckers.

Thus, the industry has been facing a shortage of drivers for the longest time now. Once the senior group of truckers retires, the problem of driver shortage would further increase.

Many trucking companies have turned to offer better driver benefits, such as premium sleeper vehicles, allowing family members to ride along, and so on. Though that is a good start to retain and entice new drivers, there is a lot more that needs to be done.

2. Skepticism About The Use Of The New Generation Of Trucks

As mentioned earlier, the trucking industry is not too keen on embracing changes as they keep rolling out. And, this is evident in the widespread skepticism about the use of the new generation of trucks.

The leading companies like Tesla and Peterbilt are ready to supply electric trucks for delivery, in-port drayage, and intermodal transfer. These all-new electric vehicles come in all sizes, from the largest trailer vehicles to light trucks. 

There is also a rising buzz about the hydrogen-electric hybrids that have hit the market, with a top brand like Nikola investing in it.

The doubts about using these trucks are mainly based on range, profitability, and performance. But, the tests run so far have shown commendable results. 

So, not giving these trucks a chance would not be a good thing to do in the sight of the increased freight traffic.

3. Failure To Leverage Data To Improve Supply Chain Networks

The freight traffic increasing by billions each year also means that it’s high time to pay attention to improving the supply chain networks. And, one of the best ways of doing that is by leveraging the data.

The wireless devices and sensors will have a real impact in changing the industry for the better.

The Internet of Things (IoT) is spreading not only to the warehouses and factories but also to the roads. Thus, the entire supply chain is getting connected, which means faster and more effective delivery of goods.

Leading companies like Samsara are working to improve supply chains’ efficiency through their Industrial IoT solutions. They are working hard to build a platform through which they can track assets, monitor the safety of the drivers and vehicle telematics, and control the industrial procedures. 

So, the truckers should be open to these changes in increasing the seamlessness of their operations. 

4. Not Enough Pay Raises To Compensate For The Working Hours

The trucking industry has consistently recorded a growth of over four percent in the last few years. This growth is also an indication of the high demand for new drivers. 

Many companies have indeed started offering enticing bonuses for welcoming the drivers through their doors. But, there are times when these offers come with too many strings attached to be worth consideration.

Though the pay rates have increased considerably in the last five years due to driver shortage, they are still not enough to compensate for the hours worked and inflation.

Furthermore, the implementation of the ELDs has made many carriers reel from the exorbitant costs of switching over the trucks. This has also made them hesitant towards offering decent wages.

The need of the hour for carriers is to come up with a strategy to increase the payments without affecting their bottom line.

5. Not Investing In A Dedicated System Of Tracking 

The repeated calls to the drivers to know their exact location have become a thing of the past now. It is highly distractive to the drivers and a complete waste of time on your part.

Besides, we live in an era when we have advanced Global Positioning System or GPS devices available to send us updates by the seconds.

So, not investing in a system of tracking and monitoring would curtail the efficiency of your fleet and burden your back-office staff for no reason.

Moreover, GPS tracking technology does a lot more than simply pinpointing the location of the trucks. It lets you know about driver behavior and helps you keep the customer informed about the shipment. 

You will no longer need to be vague about the details when a customer comes us with queries about your truck’s location.

Do you still think calling up drivers every hour is a good idea?

The Bottom Line

The spread of advanced technology into trucking and logistics suggests that the technical, truck safety and legal issues will be better managed by the drivers now. 

There is no denying that a lot has changed in the business already, but it still has a long way to go. 

Nevertheless, all the signs suggest that the industry is moving in a positive direction, and we will get to see further improvements in the days to come.