ATA: More driver turnover could push pay higher

The turnover rate among drivers at both small or large truckload companies increased during the fourth quarter of 2015, and one national trucking says this could lead to increased pay for truckers.

A new report by the American Trucking Associations shows the turnover rate for large truckload fleets rose by 2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2015 to 102 percent. It’s the second straight quarter the turnover rate was at least 100 percent, the first such streak since 2012.

The ATA report shows turnover rate at small truckload carriers – those with less than $30 million in annual revenue – grew by 21 points to 89 percent in the final quarter of 2015. Despite this uptick, the turnover rate is still six percentage points lower than during the fourth quarter of 2014.

The turnover rate at less-than-truckload carriers rose one point to 11 percent in the final quarter, and averaged 11 percent for all of 2015.

“Obviously, attracting and retaining drivers remains a top concern for the industry,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “The rising turnover rate, coupled with anecdotal reports from carriers, shows what a premium there is on experienced, safe drivers. And those drivers have and will continue to benefit from rising wages and benefits.”