Trucker jobs go unfilled, leading to delayed deliveries

If your job as a supply chain manager doesn’t pan out, you can always become a trucker! As Paul Davidson of USA Today writes, there is a severe shortage of truckers to fill positions, resulting in delayed deliveries and failing supply chains. It’s getting harder to get drivers due to several reasons: the retirement of baby boomers, the disinterest of young people in long-haul jobs, and specific qualification requirements leave the positions unfilled. This has huge ramifications for supply chains in America, resulting in missed deliveries and slipping schedules. Furthermore, this trend can make costs rise for shipping and supply: Driver shortages are effectively limiting truck capacity and helping push up freight rates by 2% to 5% this year, despite the sluggish economy, says analyst Benjamin Hartford of research firm R.W. Baird. Also driving up rates are rising wages and truck prices that have increased as much as 40% the past few years because of modernized engines that must meet tougher emissions rules. The future looks even more troubling: with new federal limits on hours worked, existing drivers won’t be able to pick up the slack, resulting in more of an effort to find drivers and more potentially failed deliveries during that time.  

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