Understanding the Dispatcher

October 21, 2019 by By Craig Faucette

The trucking industry devotes a lot of attention to the recruitment and retention of drivers. This makes sense, as truck drivers represent more than 45% of the industry’s workers.

But other occupations in trucking and logistics deserve consideration, too.

Our report, “Labour Market Information: Interim Report September 2019,” profiles a wide range of job types, including technicians, material handlers, office administrators, human resources staff, and supervisors.

One of the most essential occupations is dispatchers, who make up about 2% of the workforce but play a substantial and unique role in the industry.

From the 2016 Census data, which is the most current data available from Statistics Canada, we know:

  • There are 16,730 dispatchers working in Canada’s trucking and logistics industry
  • Regionally, 12% of these dispatchers are in B.C.; 15% in Alberta; 7% in Saskatchewan and Manitoba; 39% in Ontario; 22% in Quebec; and 5% in Atlantic Canada
  • Women make up 39% of the dispatcher workforce
  • 19% of dispatchers are newcomers to Canada
  • 19% are visible minorities
  • 4% of dispatchers are Indigenous

As well, there is a strong cohort of millennials-31% of dispatchers are between the ages of 15 and 35. On the other end of the spectrum, 17% of dispatchers are over the age of 55.

Dispatchers tend to be educated. Nearly 42% of dispatchers have their high school diploma and an additional 34% have post-secondary education.

Put the Data to Work

Employers can apply this Census data to dispatcher recruitment and retention, shaping their policies and practices to better support their staff.

For example, with 17% of dispatchers over the age of 55, employers may want to pay closer attention to retirement rates among their workers, and potentially focus their recruitment efforts on replacing those retiring workers.

With 31% of dispatchers between the ages of 15 and 34, employers may want to place more attention on maternal/parental leave policies or flexible work arrangements in order to appeal to this important demographic.

Another issue to consider is how technology is affecting dispatchers and the requirements of the job.

Will new technology change the need for dispatchers, which could result in employment levels going up or down? Will it require job candidates with more training or education? We will continue to monitor the skill requirements and changes within the labour market as technology continues to affect how the industry works.

Help Us Complete the Picture

The available data provides a snapshot of who is currently working within the industry. It gives us a clear view of their demographic makeup, education levels, and where people are working.

But government surveys provide only part of the labour-market picture.

We are currently asking employers to complete a more focused, industry-specific survey that will help us fill in some of the blanks in the StatsCan data. We need as many employers as possible to complete it so we can ensure the information we report is as accurate and representative of the industry as possible.

Our survey will be open until the end of October and can be accessed here.

If you are an employer or work in HR for a truck fleet, we hope you can take time to complete this survey.

As we continue our labour market information project, we will be releasing more data as it becomes available, along with our final report in Spring 2020. Subscribe to our newsletter to ensure you remain on top of all of the updates.

LMI Interim Report

OTTAWA, ON (September 26, 2019) – Trucking HR Canada has released an interim labour market information report with the most up-to-date, and accurate workforce data currently available for the Canadian trucking and logistics industry.

Trucking HR Canada has partnered with The Conference Board of Canada and has produced a preliminary, interim report highlighting current occupational representation, vacancy rates, workforce demographics and more.

“We are working to ensure the industry as a whole and employers have accurate, relevant and timely labour market information”, says Angela Splinter, CEO of Trucking HR Canada. Interim findings show a high vacancy rate, and overall employment growth combined with low unemployment and an upward surge in wages. “All compelling evidence the industry faces a driver shortage.”

In addition to this report, Trucking HR Canada continues to seek input from employers through a comprehensive, national labour market information survey.

To participate in the survey visit: www.truckinghr.com/truckingsurvey

To access the report visit: https://truckinghr.com/lmi

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This project is funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Sectoral Initiatives Program (SIP)

Trucking HR Canada is a national partnership-based organization that is dedicated to developing, sharing and promoting the trucking industry’s best practices in human resources and training.

For further information, contact:
Bridget O’Shaughnessy
Manager, Marketing and Communications
[email protected]
613-244-4800 x 302

Trucking HR Canada to Pilot Job Placements

OTTAWA, ON (July 30, 2019) – Trucking HR Canada is embarking on a new project focused on supporting employers in better connecting with under-represented groups. The initiative will focus on piloting job placements with people with disabilities.

Roughly 20% of the population aged 15 or over — 6.2 million Canadians — are affected by a disability that limits their daily activities in one way or another. And according to the 2017 Canadian Survey on Disability, only 59% of those between 25 and 64 are employed.

Working in partnership with employment services groups – the project will support employers, employees and potential new hires in obtaining and/or maintaining employment in the industry.

Specific activities include:

A job placement framework, and pilot for persons with disabilities interested in careers within the trucking and logistics sector. This will include wage subsidies for employers.

A coaching and mentoring resource for employers designed to support the onboarding and retention of persons with disabilities

There will be a limited number of placements available for this pilot project with the aim of supporting individuals with long-term employment opportunities.

“People with disabilities often face barriers in entering the workforce, and this pilot project will help the industry better address them,” Says Angela Splinter, CEO of Trucking HR Canada, “As we continue to innovate our recruitment and retention approaches, this pilot provides a practical approach to support employers in diversifying their workplaces.”

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Trucking HR Canada is a national partnership-based organization that is dedicated to developing, sharing and promoting the trucking industry’s best practices in human resources and training.

For further information, contact:
Bridget O’Shaughnessy
Manager, Marketing and Communications
[email protected]
613-244-4800 x 302

Millennials Have Drive 2

OTTAWA, ON (July 23, 2019) – Trucking HR Canada has launched a new report, Millennials Have Drive 2, examining the findings from research conducted through Abacus Data, which surveyed over 2000 millennials across Canada to find out why they aren’t entering the trucking and logistics industry. The report, which builds on the Millennials have Drive roadmap, provides practical tips and insights on how employers can be more successful in recruiting from the millennial talent pool in an age where competition is high for qualified talent.

When looking at six industries, survey results showed that millennials gave the trucking transport industry the lowest positive impression (46 per cent “very good and good”), compared to the construction industry which got the highest positive impressions from millennials (68 per cent “very good and good”), making it trucking’s #1 competitor in recruiting millennials.

It’s not all bad news though. The report also identified warm trucker leads, finding that 12 per cent of millennials (approximately 1.1 million Canadians aged 18 to 36) are interested in a career in long-haul trucking. One of the biggest barriers to entry for this warm-leads group was time and money. Over one-third (38 per cent) think it’s overly expensive to pursue long-haul trucker training and get licensed, steering many into other industries, like construction.

Modernizing your HR approaches with flexible work arrangements, commitment to professional development and training and strong employee communication programs are only some of the recommendations that employers will find outlined in detail in the report.

Canada’s trucking industry wants and needs millennial employees. It’s evolving and it’s innovating, offering tremendous career opportunities for millennials to do satisfying, fulfilling work in a wide range of occupations.

To download your free copy of Millennials Have Drive 2, visit Trucking HR Canada’s website at: https://truckinghr.com/millennials

This project is funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Sectoral Initiatives Program.

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Trucking HR Canada is a national partnership-based organization that is dedicated to developing, sharing and promoting the trucking industry’s best practices in human resources and training.

For further information, contact:
Bridget O’Shaughnessy
Manager, Marketing and Communications
[email protected]
613-244-4800 x 302

Trucking HR Canada Launches New Project Focused on Indigenous Youth

OTTAWA, ON (June 25, 2019) – Trucking HR Canada, with support from Indigenous Services Canada, announced today a new project focused on Indigenous youth. Over the next year, Trucking HR Canada will be working in collaboration with Indigenous organizations to deliver career awareness resources to Indigenous youth in northern Canada.

As the fastest-growing demographic in the country, Indigenous youth, are largely under-represented across all occupations within the trucking and logistics industry. Ultimately, this project will provide an array of resource materials geared towards better serving the needs of this growing demographic. In partnership with Carcross/Tagish First Nations, a workshop will be held in 2020 to showcase these career awareness resources and tools in the Yukon.

“We are pleased to partner with Indigenous Services Canada, and the Carcross/Tagish First Nations in promoting the range of careers available in trucking and logistics.” Says Angela Splinter, CEO of Trucking HR Canada, “We will also work to build relationships with groups that can help our employers better connect with all labour pools.”

Indigenous Services Canada (ISC)’s First Nations and Inuit Youth Employment Strategy (FNIYES) is part of the Government of Canada’s effort to enhance Indigenous Canadians’ education, participation in the labour market and economic success.

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Trucking HR Canada is a national partnership-based organization that is dedicated to developing, sharing and promoting the trucking industry’s best practices in human resources and training.

For further information, contact:
Bridget O’Shaughnessy
Manager, Marketing and Communications
[email protected]
613-244-4800 x 302

 

A Modern HR Approach Is Based on Sound Labour Market Information

May 14, 2019 by Angela Splinter

Modernizing your workforce starts with modernizing your HR approach.”

In today’s labour market, successful truck fleets and logistics companies know that staying abreast of the issues will help them stay ahead of the competition. Follow our “Modernizing Your HR Approach” blog series as we navigate emerging trends and share tips for finding, hiring, and retaining the talent you need.

Concerns about finding and retaining drivers is a constant theme in our conversations with fleet managers, to the point where carriers are parking trucks and turning away business.

We also know that the industry’s HR challenges run deeper than the driver pool. Trucking and logistics companies are telling us how difficult it can be to compete with other industries for IT workers, administrative personnel, and more.

Clearly, attracting and retaining all types of workers is a problem that we need to understand and solve.

We’re on it.

Trucking HR Canada is currently compiling labour market data that will put this industry’s hiring, training, and retention issues in perspective, help identify key challenges, and develop tools and mechanisms to effectively address them.

Initial findings reveal some important information about the driver shortage in Canada’s trucking industry. Here is what the data is telling us:

There are more drivers today – and more openings

The number of transport truck drivers employed in the Canadian economy has increased by almost 86,000 workers since 1996. That’s a whopping 37 percent gain, with more than 317,000 truckers employed in 2018.

However, trucking and logistics has one of the highest vacancy rates at 6.6%. We currently have more than 20,000 unfilled truck driver positions in Canada, more than double the number of vacant driver positions we had in 2016.

Unemployment among truck drivers is 34 percent lower than the average in the Canadian workforce. In fact, between 2016 and 2018, the unemployment rate for Canadian truck drivers decreased from 6.6 percent to 3.8 percent.

Demographic changes are a threat and an opportunity

When you consider that 60 percent of truck drivers in Canada are over the age of 45, and half of those workers will be eligible to retire in the next three to five years, it’s no wonder so many employers are unable find the experienced drivers they need to fill over 20,000 vacant positions.

Let’s not forgot about millennials. Less than 18 percent of truck drivers in Canada are from the millennial generation-people born between the early 1980s and the early 2000s-compared to 34 percent in the overall workforce.

And by now we all should know these stats on women: according to Statistics Canada, 97% of truck drivers are male, yet women make up close to 50% of the workforce.

Troubling data to say the least.

We need better data

More troubling is that the federal government and other public sources often produce data that tell only part of the story.

For example, Statistics Canada uses outdated definitions for the training, skills, and experience required to work in the trucking industry today. The compensation data is too broadly captured for it to mean anything. And the data does little to help clarify what changes the industry can expect in the future.

Other details are missing, too.

For example, when Statistics Canada compiles data on job postings, it ignores important information like the demand for specialized skills or licenses, like transporting dangerous goods; the number of short-haul versus long-haul jobs; how many vacancies are in private fleets compared to for-hire; and the list goes on.

Talk to us. We’re listening

To put this industry’s hiring and retention concerns into proper perspective, we need to talk to fleets directly. We’re here to listen.

Trucking HR Canada, in partnership with the Conference Board of Canada, will be reaching out to you to find out more. We want to hear from employers directly. It may take some of your time, but it is this primary data, combined with the statistical data, that will help us all better understand our HR problems.

This, in turn, will enable us to better articulate our needs to government, career seekers, and educational institutions.

Stay tuned, and we hope to have industry participation in this important work.

Prepare Now for Federal Pay Equity

May 7, 2019 by Miguel Mangalindan

 

Modernizing your workforce starts with modernizing your HR approach.

In today’s labour market, successful truck fleets and logistics companies know that staying abreast of the issues will help them stay ahead of the competition. Follow Trucking HR Canada’s 10 part “Modernizing Your HR Approach” blog series as we navigate emerging trends and share tips for finding, hiring, and retaining the talent you need.

Miguel Mangalindan is a Senior Associate Lawyer at Monkhouse Law where he practices Employment, Human Rights and Disability Insurance Law. He was a panelist at Trucking HR Canada’s Mental Health symposium last October, and recently participated as one of the Learning Highway session presenters at Women with Drive, sharing insights on how Bill C-86 will impact you. This week, we invited him to again share his expertise with us through our Blog Series.

On December 13, 2018, the federal government’s Bill C-86, which among other things establishes a new Pay Equity Act, received royal assent. The Act will require federally regulated employers to make sure that employees in female-dominated jobs receive the same level of compensation as those in male-dominated jobs of similar effort, responsibility, skill, and working conditions.

In short, it aims to ensure equal pay for work of equal value.

Who has to comply?

The Pay Equity Act applies to federal workplaces with 10 or more employees. This includes public services; Crown agencies and private companies that operate a federal work, undertaking, or business; and any employer with more than $1 million in federal government contracts.

Employers will have three years to establish a pay equity plan once the Act comes into force, and have to review and update their plan at least once every five years. Different deadlines apply to provincially regulated employers that become subject to the Act due to becoming federally regulated after the Act comes into force.

What is a Pay Equity Plan?

According to the Act, a pay equity plan must do the following:

  • Indicate the number of employees and job classes within the workplace;
  • Indicate what gender is predominant in each class;
  • Evaluate the value of work performed by each job class;
  • Identify the compensation associated with each job class and compare female- and male-predominant job classes of similar value;
  • Set out the results of the comparison, identifying which female-predominant job classes require an increase in compensation and when those increases are due; and
  • Provide information on the dispute-resolution procedure available to employees.

How do you put this plan into action?

In terms of process requirements, there must be a committee that creates the pay equity plan, notice of the plan to all employees, and then implementation. The employer must also maintain pay equity after the initial plan and payouts are made.

The Act specifies the members of the pay equity committee as well as the contents of the plan. It also sets out a formula for how to compare male and female jobs. There are rights of appeal to a new federal Pay Equity Commission that will be part of the Canadian Human Rights Commission.

The federal government has yet to proclaim a date when the Act will come into force but there will be some grace period allowed for implementation.

In the meantime, federally regulated employers should start reviewing their compensation systems and begin the process of planning and implementing pay equity, which will take lots of time, expertise, and resources to do.

A Modern HR Approach Is a Collaborative One

April 30, 2019 by Bridget O'Shaughnessy

 

“Modernizing your workforce starts with modernizing your HR approach.”

In today’s labour market, successful truck fleets and logistics companies know that staying abreast of the issues will help them stay ahead of the competition. Follow our “Modernizing Your HR Approach” blog series as we navigate emerging trends and share tips for finding, hiring, and retaining the talent you need.

As the world becomes more interconnected, we can learn a lot from other economies and cultures about how to solve our own issues in the Canadian trucking and logistics industry. One of those issues is the inclusion of women and how to improve the diversity of our industry overall.

What can we learn from others and what can we share?

On April 23, Trucking HR Canada was invited to speak at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Women in Transportation Roundtable in Vancouver. APEC brings together leaders, ministers, senior officials and business representatives, who meet regularly to drive the APEC agenda forward and implement policies and projects across a wide range of issues. Since 2015, the U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Department of State, and the U.S. Agency for International Development have worked together to implement the APEC Women in Transportation (WIT) Initiative, seeing value in this solution to labour shortages.

For me, the roundtable demonstrated just how important it is to collaborate with people from different economies and sectors who have taken on similar challenges. Here’s what we learned:

A diverse workforce is a more successful workforce

Gender equity in the workplace is no longer just an equality issue, it’s an economic one. When women do better, everyone wins.

Progress takes time

“At the current rate of progress, it will take 200 years to close the gender gap,” said Thao Pham, Associate Deputy Minister at Transport Canada, during her opening remarks at the roundtable. She’s referring to a study from CCPA Research Associate Kate McInturff that looks at Canada’s progress in closing the gap between men and women over the past two decades. Despite high-profile initiatives to increase the representation of women in politics and on corporate boards, Canada’s overall score has climbed just 2.3% in two decades.

If we want to see gender equity in our lifetime, we are going to have to make some dramatic changes. But how?

Mentorship programs work

In a study by the Wharton School of Business, 25% of employees who took part in their company’s mentoring program have experienced a salary increase compared to just 5% of non-participants. Mentors were six times more likely to be promoted than those not in the program; mentees were promoted five times more often.

Trucking HR Canada’s “Industry Youth” surveys show that the majority of young people want more mentoring and coaching in the workplace, and our “Women with Drive” surveys have two in three respondents citing mentorship as a tool that would support them professionally.

Key takeaway: Implement that mentorship program you’ve been thinking about.

Include women at every level

Gender equality is more likely to be achieved when women are involved with planning, hiring, training, and mentorship at every level of a company.

In the panel moderated by Trucking HR Canada’s CEO, Angela Splinter, we learned why it’s important to make a conscious effort to include women in surveys and data collection. It is also key to be aware of biases within the data based on women’s previous participation in the data.

The insightful panelists who spoke included: David Chien, Executive Director, Office of Policy and Plans, U.S. Federal Aviation Administration; Lori Summer, U.S. National Highway Transportation Safety Administration; Dr. Stephanie Ivey, University of Memphis; and Kelly Clifton, Portland State University.

I am hopeful that, moving forward, these collaborative approaches across economies and sectors will help everyone recognize opportunities for gender equity in our industry and in our country in my lifetime. We’ll continue to share ideas, but it’s also time for action.

How Bill C-86 Will Change Employee Termination Policies

April 23, 2019 by Miguel Mangalindan

 

Modernizing your workforce starts with modernizing your HR approach.

In today’s labour market, successful truck fleets and logistics companies know that staying abreast of the issues will help them stay ahead of the competition. Follow Trucking HR Canada’s 10 part “Modernizing Your HR Approach” blog series as we navigate emerging trends and share tips for finding, hiring, and retaining the talent you need.

Miguel Mangalindan is a Senior Associate Lawyer at Monkhouse Law where he practices Employment, Human Rights and Disability Insurance Law. He was a panelist at Trucking HR Canada’s Mental Health symposium last October, and recently participated as one of the Learning Highway session presenters at Women with Drive, sharing insights on how Bill C-86 will impact you. This week, we invited him to again share his expertise with us through our Blog Series.

Currently, if a federally regulated employer wants to terminate an employee, it must give two-weeks’ notice or pay two weeks’ wages, provided the employee has completed three months of continuous employment. If the position is under a collective bargaining agreement, the employer may also have to notify the trade union.

Bill C-86, which received royal assent in December 2018, will amend the Canada Labour Code (the “Code”) and replace the standard two-week notice with a graduated system based on length of employment:

  • two weeks for employees who have completed three months of employment;
  • three weeks for employees who have completed three years of employment;
  • four weeks for employees who have completed four years of employment;
  • five weeks for employees who have completed five years of employment;
  • six weeks for employees who have completed six years of employment;
  • seven weeks for employees who have completed seven years of employment; and
  • eight weeks for employees who have completed eight years of employment.

Generally, for employees who are part of a group termination, there will now be an additional individual notice period of eight weeks as defined in the Code.

Bill C-86 is one of the most important regulatory issues for trucking and logistics HR managers to understand, as it will affect work scheduling and break periods, leaves of absence, vacation entitlements, and more. I previously covered how Bill-86 affects leaves of absence and hours of work policies, among other amendments to the Code, in previous posts.

Many of these amendments will come into force on September 1, 2019 at the earliest. Other changes to the Code may come sooner, or possibly later, as they are to come into force at dates fixed by order of the Governor in Council, including aggregate parental leave entitlements, individual termination notices, reimbursement of work-related expenses obligations, and personal leaves.

Overall, these legislative changes will surely affect the labour and employment practices of federally regulated employers. We encourage affected employers to begin preparing for these changes now by conducting a full review of their current policies and procedures.

Modernizing Workplace Wellness

April 16, 2019 by Angela Splinter

 

“Modernizing your workforce starts with modernizing your HR approach.”

In today’s labour market, successful truck fleets and logistics companies know that staying abreast of the issues will help them stay ahead of the competition. Follow our “Modernizing Your HR Approach” blog series as we navigate emerging trends and share tips for finding, hiring, and retaining the talent you need.

There is a growing focus on employee health and wellness, and rightfully so. Putting wellness programs in place not only demonstrates that you care about your employees, it is shown to have direct impacts on employee productivity; reduced absenteesism, and overall job satisfaction.

Today, employers with comprehensive and modern wellness approaches are using them as part of their attraction and recruitment efforts. Let’s take a look at how you can make sure your health and wellness approach keeps you competitive in todays marketplace:

Tailored approaches

When it comes to workplace wellness, one size does not fit all. All employees have unique needs and priorities. And, while there is a lot of research pointing to the millennials desire for more flexibility, current research shows that in fact, employees from all generations value more flexibility, convenience and control over their benefits. There is also growing interest in non-conventional health services.

When is the last time you took a close look at your health and benefits plan? When is the last time you asked your employees what they value most about it?

There are options out there to help you meet the diverse and unique needs of your employees. Health spending accounts and wellness accounts are two examples that offer this type of flexibility. They give employees more choice and increased involvement in their benefits, and give employers financial flexibility too by allowing you to determine set spending amounts.

Financial health

With an increasing number of workers in our industry approaching retirement, assistance in educating and informing your employees about their financial wellness is an important consideration. The stress caused by financial worries and concerns should not be under-estimated.

Either through an employee assistance program, or other service providers – there are ways to confidentially address the financial concerns of your employees, through money management support, education, and debt counselling and retirement planning.

Nutrition

Good nutrition is a known factor in the health and wellbeing of your employees. It helps to maintain energy levels, contributes to a healthy body weight, and assists in the prevention and management of chronic disease

Many employers offer stocked driver lounges, host summer BBQ events, or provide staff lunches for special occasions. These are all opportunities for employers to promote healthy eating by offering healthy choices and options. If a healthy workplace culture is something you want to promote, then do so.

Mental health

In any given week, 500,000 employed Canadians are unable to work due to a mental health issue. Depression, anxiety, PTSD, and other mental health conditions are increasingly responsible for disability claims and account for more than $6 billion in lost productivity due to absenteeism and “presenteeism.” In trucking, a worker who is on the job but not mentally present also poses a safety risk.

Making sure that employees are not chronically overworked, having policies that effectively address bullying or harassment, and ensuring that staff are equipped and trained to identify mental health issues early are important considerations.

Modern workplaces are ensuring that mental health is addressed each and every day.

Make workplace wellness an integral component of your overall HR approach. Healthy and productive employees mean a healthy and productive business.