3 Tips For Surviving Commercial Driver Shortage

The shortage of commercial drivers is no longer a news. In 2015, there was a report of over 30 000 empty seats which needed to be filled in the United States and the problem has kept escalating since then. It so surprising that there is a shortage of commercial drivers when commercial driving schools, as well as trucking companies, have been pumping out newly trained drivers. Statistics have shown a good number of certified commercial drivers who are unemployed but they aren’t lining up to fill the empty seats in trucking companies. As a trucking company, the following tips can enable you to survive the shortage of commercial drivers.Tip 1 – Creating Opportunity for Growth in your CompanyWorking for a company and remaining in the same position for several years can be discouraging. One of the ways to reduce the turnover of drivers and attract new ones is by providing growth opportunities. Based on the performance of the driver, they can be promoted to other roles such as team captains and supervisors. However, the criteria for promoting the drivers should be made known to every driver on the field in other to prevent those who went promoted from getting frustrated and upset. Also, a company where there are growth opportunities are quite attractive to the younger generation of drivers. Better equipped trucks, automatic transmissions, and improved sleeping cabins are few of the other ways to attract young drivers who seek more comfort and convenience.


Tip 2 – Offering Better Compensations and Performance-Based Incentives. Offering better compensations to drivers is not an added expense but a means of reducing cost. It reduces your cost of recruiting and training because you get to attract more experienced drivers while reducing the turnover of your existing drivers. Also, drivers who do their job well, arrive on time, drive safely, and are efficient and productive should be given bonuses. This keeps them motivated.Tip 3 – Making the Job EasyThere are new technologies such as the route optimization software which helps in planning accurate and well-optimized routes. This ensures that drivers never get stuck on the road. It assists them in increasing their productivity and timeliness thus making the job easy and seamless. Also, the software comes with a tracking device which enables the company to know the location of their drivers in real time. This enables the company to be able to send assistance to the driver in case of any problem or breakdown of the vehicle while on the road.


The shortage of commercial drivers does not only increase the cost of operating a company but it also decreases the revenue of the company. Irrespective of what you choose to do in other to mitigate the impact of commercial driver shortage on your company, the best tip is to start as soon as you can. If you have any question concerning how your truck company can survive the shortage in commercial drivers, you can always call or contact a Truck Driver Company.

Leveraging Technology for Organisational Excellence

Technology & HR-Leverage one for the other: “Technology and HR are enablers of business. Integration of the two would mean not only harmonious co-existence but also leveraging one for the other. Leveraging of technology for HR would mean digitizing the mundane HR activities and automating the back office and transactional activities related to recruitment, performance management, career planning, and succession planning, training and knowledge management. Leveraging HR for technology implies managing change associated with technology by way of communication, training, hiring, retraining, stakeholder analysis and conscious keeping. Thus they can play complementary roles.”

Technology and HR both have one thing common i.e., both these are enablers of business.

In recent times, technology has become synonymous with information technology, as hardly any other technological development of the past would have impacted all spectrum of business as information technology has impacted. Irrespective of the kind of business you are in i.e., services or goods, commodity or branded, trading or manufacturing, contemporary or traditional deployment of information technology in one form or the other is a foregone conclusion. To manage and deploy technology in an effective way, all business Organizations would need knowledge workers. Managing of these knowledge workers is the responsibility of HR function. Hence the integration of technology and HR is an absolute must.

Having understood technology and HR in the present context we must understand integration in this context. Integration would not only mean harmonious co-existing but would also mean one enhancing and complementing the other i.e., technology is used to enhance effectiveness of HR and HR functions helps in adopting and managing change which technology deployment brings in.

Leveraging technology for HR

HR management as a function is responsible for deliverables like business strategy execution, administrative efficiency, employee contribution and capacity for change. All these are accomplished through what HR people do i.e., staffing, development, compensation, benefits, communicate organization design, high performing teams and so on. In majority of these areas technology is being deployed.

e-Recruitment

Recruitment is one area where all the companies worth their name leverage IT. There are two different models of e-recruitment, which are in vogue. One is recruitment through company’s own sites and the other is hosting your requirement on the other sites e.g., monster .com, jobsdb.com, jobsahead.com, naukri.com, and jobstreet.com and so on so forth. The first models is more popular with the larger companies who have a brand pull for potential employees e.g., G.E., IBM, Oracle, Microsoft, HCL, ICICI, Reliance, Mindtree consulting etc. Other companies prefer to go to the job sites. Some are adopting both.

E-recruitment has gone a long way since its start. Now these sites have gone global. Sites like jobsahead.com and monster.com have established global network, which encompasses separate sites for jobs in Australia, Denmark, Belgium, and Canada etc. Job seekers are able to search job by region or country and employers target potential employees in specific countries. For example, 3 Com recently posted a company profile on the Ireland site that highlights the contributions of 3 com’s Irish design team in its global projects.

In the early days e-recruitment was plagued with flooding the employers with low-quality bio-data’s. Again technology has come as a savior. Now pre-employment testing like the one introduced by Capital One, a US based financial company, help in filtering the applicants. These tools test online e.g., applicants for call centers. ‘Profile International’ a Texas based provider of employment assessments, has developed tools that allow instant translation of assessment tests between languages. Further developments like video- conference specialized sites, online executives recruitments and combining online and offline methods are leading to more and more companies adopting e-recruitment at least as a secondary recruitment method. Arena Knights Bridge, a US based IT company conducts video based interview of its prospective employees and only short listed employees are met in person. Even Cisco was to launch the same.

Employee Self Service

Employee self-service is perhaps one utility of IT, which has relieved HR of most of mundane tasks and helped it to improve employee satisfaction. Employee self services is a plethora of small activities, which were earlier carried out by employee through administration wing of HR. These are travel bookings, travel rules information, travel bills, leave rules, leave administration, perk administration, etc. Earlier all these rules and information were in the custody of HR. Every user employee was expected to reach out to HR and get it done. Now with deployment of ESS in most of the companies, employee can request for travel related booking online, fill his/her T.E. bills, apply for leave, log time sheet and see his perks value disbursed and due etc. E.g., in Ballarpur Industries Ltd. leave administration is completely digitized in its corporate office. It is working towards digitizing travel related activities, perks and even compensation management and performance management administration. ‘Digitize or outsource all the mundane and routine focus only on core and value add’ – Vineet Chhabra V.P. -PDC BILT.

Communication

Communication which is most talked about management tool has always been a gray area in HR management. In large companies with vast geographical spread communicating with all employees had really posed formidable challenge to HR professionals. Technology has again come for rescue. Starting with telephones, faxes, e-mails and maturing into video conferencing, net cast, web cast etc. communication is one area of HR, which has been greatly benefited by technology. Mouse & click companies like Oracle, IBM has an intranet which caters to most of the information needs of its employees. Brick & Morter companies like BILT also have made a foray into deploying intranet for internal communication, which has corporate notice board, media coverage, and knowledge corners.

Knowledge Management

Another area of HR, which is leveraging technology, is employee development. Programmed learning (PL) i.e. learning at its own pace is one of the most effective ways of adult learning. Use of technology for this purpose can’t be over emphasized. Aptech Online University and ‘The Manage mentor’ are some of the Indian sites, which are in this business knowledge management, which is an integral part of any learning organization, which cannot become a reality without technology. Companies can harness the knowledge of its employees by cataloging and hosting it on the intranet. Talk to ‘Big-5′ or not ‘so big’ consulting companies you will find that main stay of their business is the knowledge repository. Technology has enabled them to retrieve it swiftly. In the competitive environment where speed is the name of game technology driven Knowledge Management constantly provides a strategic advantage.

If you look at HR module of ERP solutions like people soft, SAP, Oracle and Ramco they provide you with a comprehensive package which helps in man-power planning, recruitment, performance management, training and development, career planning, succession planning, separation and grievance handling. A transaction happening in all these areas are digitized and form a closed loop ensuring employee database is always updated. E.g. a joining letter of a new employee is system generated. It will be printed only when all mandatory fields of information are entered. Similarly a transfer order or a separation letter is issued from the system only if that transaction has been carried out in the system.

For career planning, success planning, skill and competencies matrix methods are used by most of these systems. They search an employee with the required skills first in the in-house database of employees. Once put in practice in letter & spirit, this system not only enhances business results by matching the right candidate for right job but also improves retention of employees.

Processing payroll, churning out time office reports, providing HR-MIS are some other routine activities of HR which have been off-loaded to technology.

Leveraging HR for Technology

All HR professionals, preaching or practicing, learning or experimenting, teaching or studying have experienced leveraging technology for HR. But most of us come across a situation where we need to leverage HR for technology. Let us understand what do we mean by this.

Whenever technology is deployed afresh or upgraded it involves a change. The change may be at the activity level e.g., applying for leave through the intranet or at the mental model level e.g., digitizing the process succession planning which have been HR professionals forte. The people have always registered adopting change. This is one area where HR professionals are to deliver i.e., become change agents and lead the process of technology and change adoption. The resistance to change is directly proportional to speed of change. Now speed of change has increased and hence resistance.

Just to take an example, most of ERP implementation in the world have not been able to deliver all the expectations. Some of these have failed to deliver at all. While analyzing the cause of failure it has been observed that 96% of failures are because of people related issues and only 4% are because of technology.

It is the people who make the difference; hence HR should exploit its expertise to facilitate the adoption of technology. I would like to put together some of the thoughts on what HR should do for this.

At the time of recruitment, stop hiring for skills rather hire for attitude and a learning mind. Skills of today are no longer valid tomorrow. Managing ever changing change is the only criteria for success.

Functional or technical skills can be acquired during the job. Hence recruitment in the technology era needs to undergo a paradigm shift i.e., from a skill/competency based it needs to be attitude and learning mind/ ability based interview. That would translate into hiring for skills for future. In IBM every employee has to fill in his/her individual development plan where the employee commits its learning one/two new skills every year thus remaining competitive every time.

If we look at the chemistry of resistance to change it is either a skill issue or a will issue. To address the will issue we need to work at a comprehensive solution starting from recruitment (as discussed earlier), reward, compensation and leading to organization culture which promotes change. A living example is 3M, a US based company, where innovation is way of life, where 10% of revenue must come from new products every year. For them change becomes way of life.

To address the will issue further organization need to prepare a communication strategy which creates a ‘pull’ for the technology. For example, in Ranbaxy, when they went for SAP implementation they anticipated resistance. To address this they started a house journal, which was aimed at educating the employees on the benefits, which will result from adoption of ERP, SAP. This created a need rather a potential need or a latent need was brought out. Adoption of ERP did not become much of a problem.

At times adoption of technologies is perceived as a threat by the employees e.g., automation leading to reduction in workers, office automation leading to retrenchment of clerks etc. HR needs to be associated with the technical adoption right from the beginning till the end. At the selection of technical stage if HR is associated, it can map the skills required and create a pull during implementation and adoption. Post adoption it can release the excess non-re-allocatable employees.

To understand this process more clearly we can take example of ERP implementation. ERP is taken as an example as this is one technology adoption which effects employees across the org. irrespective of function and position. Any other automation may have affected only a segment of organisation. ERP implementation in any organization goes through the following stages.

1. Selection of package

2. Business analysis

3. Solution design

4. Configuration and customization

5. Conference room piloting (CRP)

6. Go-live and production

At each stage HR has to play a role, which will help in mitigating resistance to change.

During selection process, the change agent can understand the business benefit ERP would bring. This would help him to draw a comprehensive communication plant aimed at creating a ‘pull’ for the change. The communication plan may use its various weapons from the armory. The obvious examples are Newsletters, Newsflash. In-house journal, addressing by the top management, web cast, open house sessions, meetings formal and informal.

During the business analysis phase implementation team is supposed to analyse the existing business processes. At times this leads to surfacing of some data which is not very desirable by the process owners, leading to resistance at this stage, HR has to be again proactive and carry out a detailed stake-holder analysis. Such an analysis should give a lead to potential areas of problem and potential champions of change.

Solution design involves defining ‘To-be processes’ i.e., the way business would be carried out in future. At this stage HR has to play the role of catalyst to turn the heat on. The idea is to ensure to make maximum out of an opportunity of package enabled business transformation. HR can play a role by arranging to educate and train the right people on best business practices, just before this phase.

During the configuration and customization HR has to keep on beating the drum, the customization of a standard package is a big no-no. Similarly, during the conference room plotting (CRP) it should help in identifying the right persons to be involved in CRP. A thorough testing at this stage would result in lesser pain at the time of going live. This is also time to focus on training of end users, the employees who are going to use the system once implemented. Training- retraining -training to ensure all the prospective users are comfortable with usage of software before the system goes live.

During the go-live stage HR has to work over time to keep the motivation levels high. This is the time when management starts losing patience as one glitch after the other keeps appearing and virtually bringing the business to halt. At this stage, HR has to play ‘conscious keeper’ for the top management once into product relocating the surplus is a challenge for which it has to be prepared before it.

This examples makes it clear that involvement of HR during the entire life cycle of technology is valuable. ERP is not an isolated case. It is true for any other technology adoption only finer details may vary. Hence HR must play a proactive role rather than being just a silent spectator or mere executers of the wishes of business or chief technology officer in case of technological changes.

Having set the case in different perspective, it seems only logical to leverage technology for HR and vice-versa.

National Economic Reforms Science And Technology Directives

In the last half of the 20th century it was President Kennedy who took up the gauntlet of outlining a national directive focusing on science and technology. The course that the United States chartered then propelled America into the space age. No longer was man confined to this planet alone. We reached for the stars and did the impossible. We put a man on the moon, built the International Space Station, launched the Hubble Telescope which opened up the universe for all of mankind, and sent the Voyager on a never ending quest to “boldly go where no man has gone before.”

This all came about because a sitting President had the courage and took the leadership to lay the groundwork for the United States to act on a decisive plan of direction which open up so many windows of opportunity for millions of Americans. Some how for the past five decades the United States lost the exuberance that prevailed when President Kennedy pointed this country in a new direction.

Sure, there have been many marvels along the way in technology, science, and medicine. The Internet for one has opened up a whole new world filled with opportunities never before imagined. Heart transplants are now almost a routine procedure. So many more wonders have come into existence since the early 1960′s but, the leadership to identify and implement a national plan of direction that would put the United States onto the path toward that brighter future hasn’t happened since we put a man on the moon. It is within National Economic Reform where there is a direct plan of direction for the United States. Article Six is probably the most ambitious directive there is. But, this component is vital for the future of America and really the rest of the world. Implementing National Economic Reform is crucial for the future of not only the United States but for all of mankind especially when the Science and Technology Directives are realized.

The United States must recognize and take decisive action on five fronts now outlined in Article Six of National Economic Reform. One of the most important issues is the extent of Global Warming has on humanity and economies all over the world. This first directive is probably one of the more contentious and ambiguous issues today. We have to accept the facts as they present themselves.

First of all mankind has relied on the fuel of the first and second industrial revolution for far too ling. Today’s technology has afforded the United States to dispense with any and all types of fossil fuel while at the same time ushering in alternative lower cost green energy to supply the energy needs of this nation. There is no excuse other than Greed to keep the American public held hostage by the major fossil fuel conglomerates. Energy independence is realistic now using affordable alternative energy. The Third Industrial Revolution is now beginning and it is under the directive of Science and Technology in National Economic Reform that the energy of the tomorrow will emerge. We must remember that when the first Industrialized Revolution unfolded the fuel that ushered in a new found way of life was all based on fossil fuels. What followed was a feeding frenzy of drilling and mining which only created and environmental catastrophe that is unfolding today. Yet, in the United States our governmental officials for the most part are in a state of continued denial that our industrial infrastructure, that by the way was built and continues to use fossil fuel, is the cause of all the environmental impact that global warming is having all around the globe.

All of civilization is at a critical juncture today. We have developed more technologies in the shortest amount of time than in any other period in history. The sad fact today is that there are multitudes not only in the United States but all over the world that are left with-out the benefits that these technologies could bring. More and more people are facing dire living conditions here and over seas. Over one billion people are literally starving to death. The threat of Global Pandemics is as real as it gets. We have and are continuing to develop better technologies to eradicate hunger and the threat of a Pandemic today. But, the resolve to use the technologies that we have and develop more for the betterment of all of mankind is predicated by the implementation of National Economic Reform’s Science and Technology Directive.

The scientific community all support that drastic changes in the earths delicate condition will cause events of biblical proportions if man continues the use and consumption of fossil fuel. The world today faces mass extinctions of marine life caused by mans destructive nature in pollution of our oceans. It is imperative that the United States change direction, the continued misguided ideologies and attitudes that have prevailed for far too long if this nation is ever going to rise out of the ashes of our economic crisis. Within the Science and Technology Directive like a Phoenix rising to lead the world in alternative energy. It reminds one of that opening to the Six Million Dollar Man,” We have the technology to make him better, faster, and stronger.” Well guess what people, we actually do.

To understand what has occurred in the last hundred years of the industrial revolutions that has caused a global crisis is to look at when the peak of the second industrial revolution occurred. In 1980 is when scientists first really became concerned of the effects of all the carbon being released into the atmosphere by the industrial complexes and our modes of transportation was having. It seems that all through-out history whenever their is a industrial shift using newer technologies an economic revolution also occurs. These new emerging energy sources make it possible to create more independent economic activity. This in turn gives rise to providing more avenues to expand more commercial activity as well. Accompanying all of this newer technology are communication upgrades or so called revolutions which become the foundations where mans ability to organize, manage, and control the newer more stable set of spatial dynamics. All from evolving energy technologies.

By 1994 a new convergence of communication and energy was now infiltrating societies. Internet technology and the reemergence of renewable energy sources were about to merge in creating a powerful new infrastructure that will fuel the Third Industrial Revolution. This third industrial revolution has already begun. And, it is about to change the world forever. Just think in the next 50 or so years hundreds of millions of people the world over will be able to produce their own green energy in their homes, in offices, and in factories. Humanity will be able to share with each other an “energy Internet,” just like we are able to now create and share information online today. The democratization of energy will bring with it a fundamental reordering of all human relationships, impacting the very way we conduct business, govern society, educate and engage in civic and cultural activities.

It is to this purpose that the Scientific and Technological Directive in National Economic Reform initiate the further development and deployment of Internet energy systems across the country. To date the United States has yet to capitalize of this emerging source of the energy that will revolutionize the whole spectrum of energy consumption the world over. Government procrastination, denial, apathy and indifference have only confounded the American populace as to why the United Stats continually lags behind other industrialized countries in developing new renewable energy systems. Just take a look; in 2006 the European Union laid the groundwork for further development of this Internet technology for energy. Green technologies have all given rise to new medium of communications and infrastructure. It is in Europe and in Japan that have taken the lead in developing and the implementation of renewable green and Internet energy. meanwhile the US is stuck with our antiquated energy policies and infrastructure that still rely of fossil fuel. This is more than enough reason to implement National Economic Reform and it’s Science and Technology directives.

The second directive has to be the focus on enough clean fresh water being made available for every American and eliminate the prospect of another drought that caused irrevocable damage to this past summers harvested crops. Again, the United States has the technology to supply fresh water to areas where there are shortages. An intercontinental aqueduct that crisscrosses the country bringing water to areas that need it most is a priority that can’t wait any longer. To those skeptics that continue to say we can’t afford to spend billions of dollars to build the infrastructure that would accommodate this monumental undertaking forget one of the biggest reasons and purpose behind National Economic Reform and that is to have the United States regain it’s financial capabilities. If we constructed the oil pipeline from Alaska we can do likewise for water, our most precious natural resource.

The third directive concerns the eventuality of natural disasters. Earthquakes, tornados, hurricanes and major power outages all are facts of life. But what the United states must do to minimize the devastation caused is to have in place better warning systems, safer and sturdier construction that will be able to withstand any contingency that arises out of a natural catastrophe, and have in place relief efforts readily available so that another Katrina like episode will never happen again.

The fourth directive is already being considered by scientists the world over. To make what President Kennedy started become more of a reality for deep space travel and realistically transport men and equipment to distant planets space travel has to be reinvented sort of speaking. This is because our known laws of physics has only kept humanity very limited in space exploration. That is until now. It is this forth directive that will have far reaching implications to say the least.

We must remember that since the dawn of mankind man has always looked up to the heavens and pondered that ageless question whether we are alone or are there other life forms some where out in the Universe. From the first time man notices those shinning stars above we have become fascinated by the reality of what is really out there. Humanity has always pondered the possibilities of other life forms that could very possibly be inhabiting other worlds. Through-out history even before Ancient Egypt the question of was mankind influenced by Alien life forms has always sparked debate. Stonehenge is one example of just maybe mankind was assisted with the building of that monument. And, there are other all over the world that to this day cannot be explained using our present knowledge and technology.

The Roswell case and Area 51 come quickly when we think of Alien visitors. What happened that night in 1947 indicates that we may have just had a visit from some alien life form. To this day there are still conflicting reports of what actually occurred in Area 51. Is there still a cover up of what happened or is it all a hoax in an attempt to create more speculation of the existence of Alien life forms? It really is difficult to comprehend considering the vastness of space and the abundance of other galaxies to think that mankind on earth are the only life forms in the entire universe.

This fourth directive has to do with the facts that man by nature is inquisitive, always searching for meaning, answers to the what if’s, the facts of life’s existence and the answers to what really is out there in the cosmos. This has stirred the never ending pursuit to find the answers. Finding those answers lies with developing the technologies that would make it feasible to actually secure the knowledge of what the Universe holds for mankind.

The United States was just beginning to develop the technology that would enable man to actually solve some of the mysteries of the Universe with the deployment of the Supercollider that was almost completed in 1993. The experiments that were to be conducted would have enabled scientists to finally realize what Albert Einstein’s Theory of Relativity entailed. Part of the answers remain hidden but, what we do know now that nuclear fusion and atoms accelerate to the speed of light. Roughly one hours ride to Jupiter. The whole concept behind the Supercollider project was to create and prove molecules can move as fast as atoms. We were very close in achieving molecular momentum accelerating to the speed of light and nuclear fusion. Unfortunately congress in their shortsightedness failed to renew the funding for the completion of the Supercollider project. The reality hit home because the cost to dismantle what was already constructed cost much more in tax payers money than that what was needed to finish construction. Just another way Congress still can’t get it right. Today, there has been a renewed interest from the international scientific community. A new smaller version has been completed under the Swiss and French boarder and is more than capable of finishing what the United States tried to do in 1993.

Involved in the fourth directive is proving and achieving molecular acceleration equal to that of atomic acceleration. Once we do mankind just might be able to greatly expand our knowledge of our own galaxy and others as well. Albert Einstein proved that atoms accelerated to the speed of light. It is now up to this directive and involving the rest of the worlds scientific community to figure out molecular reconstruction and reconstruction of when molecules achieve the acceleration point of atomic particles and reconstruct the same molecules as before after the acceleration has been achieved. All one has to do to visualize this is look at any Star Trek shows when they say “beam me up.” It isn’t so far from becoming a reality. Without gaining this knowledge mankind will find it next to impossible to be able to reach and explore the far reaches of our own galaxy let alone the rest of the universe.

We are close but we aren’t there yet and the prime goal of this fourth directive is to finish the job. Once we do mankind just might be able to like that saying “boldly go where no man has gone before.” It is to this end that the Science and Technology directive focus on bringing together the rest of the international community and other industrialized nations in creating an International Space Exploratory Federation using all the available aerospace contractors and encouraging more countries to provide resources so that more opportunities in developing newer technologies will enable mankind to have the availability to fulfill our ultimate destiny.

The fifth directive is in the medical field of advancing and distribution of vaccines and treatments so that any threat of a pandemic outbreak will be held in check. In the United States there is a resurgence of dreaded diseases such as TB, small pox, whooping cough and a whole assortment of other diseases that early vaccinations would practically eliminate any threat of a resurgence of the diseases that are on the rise today. All too often misguided information, lack of funding, or just plan ignorance have placed our society at risk. When the medical community is very much concerned that any outbreak of communicable diseases could at any moment spread like wild fire quick containment and vaccinations are imperative. This fifth directive goes along with National Economic Reforms, Universal Health Care.

A plan of direction for the United States is the purpose and guide of National Economic Reform. The Science and Technology Directives outlined will have a direct affect on the future of America. It is the intent of total reform from which the United States will emerge from the quandaries that have befallen this nation. In implementing National Economic Reform in it’s entirety the United States will rise like that Phoenix to lead the world into that brighter future.