The Trucker Chronicles

Trucking Industry Trends:

Trucking Companies Look to Hire More Veterans

 The trucking industry has been responsible for many positive changes in the United States, and its changing employment trends are just one more sign of the important role that trucking plays in the nation’s economy. With the FMCSA Military Skills Test Waiver spreading across the country since 2011, the trucking industry employs more veterans than it ever has before.

2015 will likely bring even more veterans into the trucking industry, if trends continue as they have over the last 12 months. While the program has drawn around 6,000 veterans into trucking since it began, the the FMCSA reports that 4,000 veterans have taken the Military Skills Waiver Test in 2014 alone.

 Solving the Trucking Shortage and the Veteran Job Shortage Together

This may be one of the best changes to ever happen to the truck driving industry. As a trucking professional, you are likely well aware of the driver shortage that has been growing in recent years. In addition, there are far too many veterans who are unable to find good-paying work, when they deserve plenty of opportunities for their sacrifices.

Experts in this field note that truck driving is a job that is well-suited to many military veterans, since this industry is so highly structured and regulated, much like the military.

 How the FMCSA Military Skills Test Waiver Helps

Although veteran hiring is at an all-time high, the industry isn’t done yet. The American Trucking Association hopes to increase hiring of veterans to 100,000 veterans per year.

The FMCSA Military Skills Test Waiver program is one of the biggest factors in successfully increasing veteran employment. This waiver allows a veteran who has been discharged in the last year to bypass state CDL testing laws if they have at least two years of relevant experience in the military. This can save time, money, and training expenses. In 2011, this law began to roll out. It is now accepted and used by all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

How the G.I. Bill Helps Veterans Get A CDL

Not all veterans can use the FMCSA Skills Test Waiver, particularly those who do not have military vehicle driving experience or those who were discharged from the military more than one year ago. However, these veterans may still be able to get started in the trucking industry at no cost to themselves. The G.I. Bill, which covers educational expenses for veterans, permits veterans to use their benefits for truck driving education.

This money can help drivers earn their CDL and get into the industry in a matter of weeks.

 Changing Hiring Patterns in the Trucking Industry

Company owners are thrilled about this change, and why wouldn’t they be? They get truck drivers who are disciplined, experienced, good at following rules and standards, and fully invested in their careers. In addition, since veterans who use the FMCSA Skills Test Waiver get their license right off the bat, companies can save thousands of dollars in training costs when compared to new hires who are not yet licensed.

As more and more companies hire veterans and do their part to close the driver shortage, you may see this employment trend change the lives of an increasing number of veterans. Consider, for example, Jesse Delph. After serving as a Marine for four years, Delph found himself unemployed and without income. By connecting with other veterans, he discovered the opportunities in the field of truck driving. He now enjoys a rewarding job that allows him to see the country, earn a competitive salary, and know that he is still serving his country.

Whether you are a truck driver, a veteran looking for work, or a trucking company owner, this employment trend is likely good news for you. An increase of veterans in the trucking field can only make the field stronger and more successful.

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