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Steps in Recruiting New Drivers


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20 Jul 2002 04:57


EMPLOYEES by Scott Burrows,

Recruiting New Drivers for Towing Companies,
Successful recruiting is a sales and marketing function, not a personnel function. The better you are at selling your company to potential employees, the more selective you can be. Success also means a disciplined process.

Step 1: Answer driver inquires: Do everything you can to make sure that prospective drivers talk to a real person. You must treat each call as your only chance to talk to a driver. Assume your prospective driver has called five other towing companies - all of whom are eager to talk. If the driver is shopping, make your sales pitch as if you were closing the deal.
Step 2: Screen prospects: Regardless of how well you spell out your needs in advertisements, you will receive calls from drivers who won’t fit your operation. Determine this as quickly as possible so you can spend more time with qualified drivers. During the first minute of a conversation with a driver, cover where he lives, his work history and driving record.

Step 3: Ask for an application: Most towing companies may try to take the driver's application right over the phone. They view an insistence for a mailed application as a sign the driver isn't committed to switching companies yet.
Step 4: Approve applications: Try to process applications within 24 hours. You probably can't complete the background check this fast, but consider a conditional offer of employment based on the information provided providing accurate. Check with a lawyer, however, to ensure that conditional employment offers are legal in your state.

Step 5: Offer employment: As soon as you identify a driver you want, make an offer. Also, when a good prospect calls to check his application's status, you cannot afford to mishandle the call. Owners should provide receptionists with a list of drivers they hope will call back. If the person authorized to make employment offers is busy, the person taking the call should let the driver know that someone will call back promptly.

Step 6: Schedule orientation: Drivers often accept employment but don't show up at orientation because they decided not to switch jobs or to take another company's offer. If a driver says he is going to stay put or to work for someone else, ask for his reasons, but don't try to persuade him otherwise. By respecting his decision, you show respect and set the stage for future employment.

Step 7: Follow up with no-shows: If a driver fails to show up for orientation, call him at home immediately to find out why. If the reason appears legitimate, decide whether to give him another chance.
Step 8: Complete drug test, physical and road test: Having the driver complete drug testing close to home speeds up orientation and avoids the awkward problem of dealing with drivers who test positive during orientation. Also, pay real attention to the road test. Mistakes made during the road test will be repeated in actual job performance.

Step 9: Complete orientation: Even if a driver passes all the required tests or screens but displays a problem with attitude or discipline, don't shy away from failing him in orientation. Yes, you have invested much time and effort, but hiring a bad driver is worse than wasting time.

Step 10: Follow up: At every stage of the process, some drivers will fall out for reasons that have nothing to with their skill or qualifications. Smart towing company owners keep the names of these drivers and follow up with them periodically to gauge their interest. Some companies even send birthday and Christmas cards to former prospects.
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I worked for a man once who would, as part of the interview process, take the prospective employees family out to eat a nice dinner. He would watch the interaction between the applicant and their significant other. I think Dave Ramsey does this as well. This was before I had even heard of Dave Ramsey, well over a decade ago. He stated that he is hiring the applicant, but also the habits and attitude of the entire family.


The yard cat had to approve of an applicant as well.

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