CRST Expedited, Inc. has announced a second $10 million pay increase to its experienced drivers. The increase went into effect on Jan. 15 and comes just 15 months after the company’s first $10 million increase in driver pay.
“The raises are designed to reward experienced drivers and incent driver tenure in a highly competitive marketplace,” said Cameron Holzer, president of CRST Expedited. “As the driver shortage worsens the competition for qualified, experienced drivers continues to increase. As CRST continues to grow, we need to invest in our drivers to retain and grow our fleet.”
In addition to the pay raise, CRST has implemented what it calls a “culture-changing initiative” focused on improving the driver experience and reducing driver turnover. The Gold Rules initiative emphasizes a corporate culture that centers on meeting all driver needs, providing regular driver home time and increased pay. Since the initiative began eight months ago, driver turnover has declined by 20 percent, according to the company.
“We believe that the combination of our culture-changing Gold Rules initiative, plus the pay increase will make CRST a great place for drivers to build their careers” said Holzer. “Additionally, we believe, the entire industry will need to increase wages for drivers in order to ease the perpetual driver shortage.”
CRST has invested in drivers in other ways over the past several years:
- by building a state-of-the-art driver training and truck repair facility in Riverside, Calif.;
- expanding the driver training facility in Cedar Rapids, Iowa;
- and launching a Commercial Drivers’ License (CDL) training academy (the North American Driver Training Academy) in Cedar Rapids.
CRST trains up to 250 new drivers each week in its facilities. It offers on-campus lodging, classrooms, affordable quality meals and entertainment. Additionally, the company offers safety training to its drivers at no cost.
In the past few years, CRST has grown through acquisitions and organic business growth to become one of the largest and most diversified transportation companies in the U.S. with projected 2015 annual revenues in excess of $1.5 billion. It currently employs more than 7,000 company drivers, independent contractors and office personnel across the nation.