The Driver Shortage: Delaying Delivery

It is no secret that there is a national driver shortage for carriers. The reasons are numerous, but this week we’re going to focus on a situation that occurs far too often in the logistics industry with all carriers. What occurs damages driver morale and has caused many to abandon cross-country routes since they’re not treated humanely, let alone with the respect they deserve.

What is this phenomenon? What occurs is drivers often travel 2,000 – 3,000 miles in order to ensure a successful delivery. The driver has even made it to the final destination at the specified time directed by the customer, but upon arrival that same customer informs the driver that it will require an additional wait of 2-3 hours (sometimes overnight!) before the trailer can be unloaded into the warehouse. There have even been instances where drivers have been told that THEY need to hire a crew to unload the trailer. Whatever the reasons may be for these delays, whether employee shortages or miscommunication within the company, what these companies fail to understand is that these drivers have nowhere to go. It’s not as if they can take their truck and drive off to get a meal or use a restroom. They have a responsibility to ensure the delivery is made and are being treated poorly just for doing their job. They’re forced to remain with the shipment and can’t return to their families. No other professional would be treated this way, why is this seen as acceptable to treat drivers this way?

Such delays not only hurt morale for the drivers, but can be disastrous with sensitive shipments, particularly food. If the warehouse manager orders a driver to open the trailer but waits 2-3 hours before unloading the shipment, that food won’t be kept at the optimal temperature. As a result the shipment will be refused by the warehouse manager, creating an unnecessary dispute between the shipper, the customer and the carrier on who is responsible for the shipment and any fees incurred. 

It is vital that companies communicate their warehouse situations to all the members of the supply chain in order to prevent such hostile working conditions. When we remember that these drivers are people too and have families they wish to go home to, prioritizing unloading shipments becomes a lot easier. Also remembering that they’ve worked hard, traveling vast distances to ensure a successful shipment can go a long way in creating cooperation.

Here at Zip Xpress, we understand the importance of drivers and their contributions to the logistics industry as well as the supply chain. We work hard to ensure that every member of our supply chain is communicated with and find the solutions that work with everyone. We care deeply for our drivers, which is why we do everything we can to help them in ensuring a successful delivery and thus, satisfy our customers. If you want to see for yourself, start today with Zip Xpress!