The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday that average pay for freight haulers is up 17% in less than two years as the fight to meet hiring needs continue. This brings the average annual pay to a record $57,000.
In comparison, average wages across other professions have risen 4% over the same time period.
"Many freight haulers have in the past year pushed through their biggest
raises in decades. Truck-stop job boards and satellite radio airwaves
are saturated with want ads, some offering sign-on bonuses topping
$5,000 and free bus tickets to drivers willing to switch employers.
Companies are equipping their fleets with satellite televisions and
other amenities to make life on the road more comfortable."
Drivers are in demand, as we have reported first-hand here at Gary's Job Board. The industry is booming because of the improving economy; the strong dollar is "increasing demand for for imported goods that must be transported from ports to cities and towns nationwide."
Interest in the profession, says WSJ, is waning.
“Everyone is fighting over the same drivers,” said Dan Pallme, director
of the Intermodal Freight Transportation Institute at the University of
Memphis. “Eventually, what has to happen is salary has to rise, and the
only way motor carriers can do that is by increasing the costs to their
“Given the fact that the cost of transporting products over the road is
rising, it has kind of forced us to rethink our distribution network
strategy,” said Jim Keppler, Whirlpool’s vice president of integrated supply chain. “Driver pay is a big part of that.”