December 3, 2021

US companies are offering big bonuses to attract truck drivers from South Africa

A extreme scarcity of truck drivers within the US has led to extra companies bringing in drivers from overseas, with South Africa seen as a key market.

Anda Malescu, the managing companion at Miami-based Malescu Regulation, informed the Monetary Instances that companies are rising more and more determined due to an absence of employees.

Malescu stated her agency helps trucking companies to supply drivers from ket markets akin to Mexico, Canada and South Africa – regardless of strict journey restrictions and quotas on visas.

As well as, companies akin to Walmart are offering an $8,000 (R117,00) signing bonus for some drivers, whereas British retailer John Lewis introduced plans to increase driver salaries by up to £5,000 (R100,000) a 12 months because the UK additionally faces shortages.

In 2019, the US was already brief 60,000 drivers, in accordance to the American Trucking Affiliation. In accordance to Bob Costello, the group’s chief economist, that quantity is anticipated to develop to 100,000 by 2023.

The US has been grappling with a power lack of drivers for years, however the scarcity has reached disaster ranges due to the pandemic, which concurrently despatched demand for shipped items hovering whereas additionally seeing a surge in early retirements.

Bringing in additional international employees introduces numerous hurdles together with visa limits and sophisticated immigration guidelines. Nonetheless, trucking advocates see a gap now to overcome a few of these obstacles after the Biden administration created a activity drive to deal with the provision chain issues impeding the financial restoration.

Not a brand new phenomenon

Arnoux Mare, chief govt of Progressive Options Group, informed RSG that this was not a brand new pattern and that South Africans have been in demand for a number of years.

Mare’s firm specialises in outsourcing work features together with hiring logistics and drivers for companies and he has additionally employed native drivers to drive for worldwide companies.

He added that the pattern was not restricted to the US, with South Africans additionally wanted in Europe in nations akin to England.

Whereas Mare couldn’t give a precise determine on what number of truck drivers are in demand, he stated that there was a transparent scarcity and demand.

He added that these drivers would nonetheless be required to do their licences and be taught the varied street guidelines, so South Africans shouldn’t anticipate to begin working immediately.

He additional cautioned that immigration to the US is in excessive demand from different nations, so South Africans must be cautious of simply quitting their jobs right here and transferring over with out having a plan in place.

He added that drivers also needs to be cautious of companies promising ‘R1 million a year’ as these tales can typically be too good to be true. This isn’t essentially a traditional wage or what one would truly earn.

Knowledge sourced from the wage web site Certainly exhibits that the common annual base wage for a truck driver within the US is $67,256 – nearly precisely R1 million.

That is clearly extremely depending on the {qualifications} and expertise of the driving force, with drivers incomes considerably extra relying on the corporate they work for and the variety of years they’ve pushed.

This aligns carefully with comparative wage information from wage web site Expertise, with a mean annual base wage of $67,600 (R1,005,833).

Entry-level positions begin at $51,676 (R768,897) per 12 months, whereas most skilled employees make up to $96,183 (R1.4 million) per 12 months.

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