Four Key Takeaways from Women with Drive 2021

By: Katrina Pizzino

Trucking HR Canada’s 7th Annual Women with Drive Leadership Summit kept the international women’s day celebratory vibes of women, women leaders, and women in the industry going full speed. While the event was a little different – being the first time it was held virtually and globally, we still brought together over 200 women from the industry to connect and learn from one another.  It left delegates with the regular high dose of inspiration along with practical and insightful take-aways from a roster of formidable speakers.

The Right Honorable Michaëlle Jean, who served as Governor General of Canada from 2005 to 2010, and Halla Tómasdóttir, Icelandic businessperson and CEO of the B Team, left us with a plethora of insights.  The 2021 Women with Drive stage provided me with four key takeaways from our keynote speakers:

We are Change Makers

Michaëlle Jean trumpeted the efforts the trucking industry has put forward. She noted that we have been heralded as heroes during this time of pandemic, saying that it is time for the invisible to become visible.  She noted that front line workers and those in the trucking industry are finally getting the public attention that they deserve, claiming that it is the hard workers in our industry who have suffered an inexcusable blind spot before the pandemic; and that it is time we recognize that we offer good meaningful work for hundreds of thousands of Canadians. What we do with this new attention and praise is key. Truck drivers notably, as Jean mentions have a remarkable and unique role in that they get to see sights many of us never will. This is perhaps a potential draw for recruiters to take note of. A philanthropist at heart, she also encouraged us to leverage our reach. She earnestly reminded us that our trucks are moving billboards for cause and positivity. This is what many of our Top Fleet Employers do when participating in various charitable causes such as: Plaid for Dad, Pink for the Cure, and Art Saves Lives.  We often forget to highlight this part of the trucking industry as an attraction – that it is not JUST trucking, it is so much more. It is a multitude of causes and action, and ingenuity. By highlighting the change maker abilities of our sector, Jean created a powerful united feeling of potential.

Employers have an opportunity

Michaëlle Jean also reminded us that the pandemic has created an opening for us to further investigate some of our collective societal issues. Saying, “In the same way lemon juice and a light bulb manifest invisible ink” – the pandemic has highlighted many core societal issues including, racism, sexism, homophobia, and ageism. Thus, perhaps the pandemic has helped to dismantle many of the things that are otherwise wrong with our current society. She challenges employers to use this moment for change and examine their own diversity and inclusion policies.

 

Women belong everywhere – including trucking

Halla Tómasdóttir reminded us of the “inner leader” that we all have. We need to confront our imposter feelings in order to excel and believe in our capabilities. And, as women, we need to stop doubting and questioning our abilities and our right to be in certain professional spaces. Women belong everywhere – and yes, that includes trucking. The pandemic, she noted, has brought about a time when women’s leadership is being noticed and recognized. Tómasdóttir reminded us that when women have a seat at the table, positive changes are made, and we see progress. For more women to be in leadership, young women need mentors and to see women who are succeeding at the highest levels.

No more business as usual

We may never go back to how things were before the pandemic – and Halla highlighted that this is not necessarily a bad thing. A lot was wrong with the world before and the pandemic is causing us to question what could ultimately, be better.  Maybe Canadians can continue to honour truckers and the entire trucking industry as essential work.  Perhaps we can embrace a future when trucking is more alluring to new and young workers. And certainly, with current unemployment rates, we have the possibility to invite and welcome people into our industry more than ever before.

The trucking industry is one of change, one that appreciates inclusion and diversity, one that encourages women’s leadership, and one that is filled with Women with Drive. Women with Drive Leadership Summit thus remains an important event for the trucking industry – because we still need and always will need, women with drive.

 

 

Following 2020: here’s what trucking and logistics HR pros should expect next

By: Angela Splinter

As an unsettled 2020 comes to an end, let’s look at what 2021 will have in store for our trucking and logistics workplaces.

The modernization of Canada’s Labour Code

In what our own Policy Analyst Marisha Tardif has likened to a “legislative tsunami,” recent amendments to the Canada Labour Code include new labour standards, wage-fairness rules, and occupational health and safety requirements.

Many of these regulations took effect in September 2019 but several are yet to come. Notably, the amendments of Bill C-65 and the accompanying regulations which protect against harassment and violence in the workplace.

The Workplace Harassment and Violence Prevention Regulations, published in June, make a long-awaited detail official: new anti-harassment and violence provisions will take effect on January 1, 2021.

The regulations will apply to all workplaces covered under Part II of the Canada Labour Code, including many trucking and logistics employers.

NOC updates

Canada is now conducting its 10-year review of the National Occupational Classification (NOC), the federal system for categorizing job types in the country, including truck driving.

The next release includes new job-skill classifications that address concerns about how the federal government incorporates formal and informal training, education, and work experience into the NOC.

In early 2021 we will see how truck drivers are classified in the new system, and how it will affect federal programs.

Training and wage subsidies

With the events of 2020 clearly demonstrating how important this industry is, Trucking HR Canada was able to access federal funds for training and wage subsidies for jobs in trucking and logistics.

Our Career ExpressWay program has successfully supported the training and onboarding of close to 100 young people across the country, in driving positions, logistics, IT support, administration, and more. It provides up to $10,000 for driver training and up to $15,000 in wage subsidy per employee.

Our hope is that we can expand our program in 2021 to better connect our industry to Canadians of all ages looking for meaningful work in a sector with loads of career opportunities.

Diversity and inclusion

No longer buzzwords, workplace diversity and inclusion will remain a focus of Trucking HR Canada as we help employers expand the pipeline of talent into our industry.

One key initiative is our 2021 Women with Drive Leadership Summit, planned for March 10th.  With an international flair, we look forward to learning from and virtually connecting with a global network of women who have stepped up in their respective countries in responding to the challenges of COVID-19.

Driver shortages

Whether you believe it or not, we are on track for more acute driver shortages.

That is why Trucking HR Canada is planning to bring together industry stakeholders to define the root causes of our recruitment and retention challenges, from compensation structures to the nature of long-haul trucking driving itself.

The shortage of qualified drivers is an enduring issue. But there are always new approaches and new ideas that can inform innovative and practical solutions.

Growing our Top Fleet Employers

Now in its eighth year, our Top Fleet Employers program has grown steadily.

Our Top Fleet Employers are leaders in promoting a positive image of trucking and logistics and offering great places to work. By sharing sound HR policies and practices, they set an important example as we reach out to young people, women, and other job seekers.

Each year trucking and logistics companies undergo a rigorous application process but only the best are recognized as Top Fleet Employers. Applications close January 28, and you can click here to learn more: https://truckinghr.com/top-fleet-employers/

 

COVID-19

Where things will go in 2021 is anyone’s guess, but we know for sure that trucking and logistics will be pivotal to ensuring all essential goods—from food to fuel, and even more importantly, vaccines—get to all Canadians.

Rest assured that Trucking HR Canada and all of our partners are here to support you in ensuring you have the skilled workforce you need to make that happen.

Cheers to 2021.

Major revisions coming to Canada’s National Occupational Classification

By: Angela Splinter

Canada is overhauling the National Occupational Classification (NOC) — the national reference on occupations in Canada.

The NOC provides a systematic classification structure that categorizes the entire range of occupational activity in Canada for collecting, analyzing, and disseminating occupational data.  Every 10 years, the government conducts a major review of the NOC for the purposes of labour supply and demand analysis, skills development, occupational forecasting, and other programs and services.

The next release, scheduled for early 2021, includes a new structural approach.  Let’s take a look:

New “TEER” approach

Reflecting changes in the economy and the nature of work, the NOC 2021 revision will overhaul the “skill level” structure by introducing a new categorization representing the degree of training, education, experience, and responsibilities (TEER) required for an occupation.

The new TEER categorization considers the type of education, training, and experience required for entry, as well as the complexities and responsibilities typical of an occupation. This new structure has a scale of 0 to 5:

 

  • TEER 0 is defined as high-level management.
  • TEER 1 occupations usually require a university education or previous experience and expertise in subject matter knowledge from a related occupation found within TEER 2.
  • TEER 2 usually requires post-secondary education, apprenticeship, or occupations with supervisory or significant safety responsibilities.
  • TEER 3 occupations require less than two years of post-secondary education or on-the-job instruction.
  • TEERs 4 and 5 usually require a high-school diploma or no formal education.

 

Better representation

The federal government says the TEER system better reflects the way people develop their skills and knowledge.

The revisions introduce changes that will make the new classification system more representative, useful, and achieve a more balanced representation of occupation groupings within a given classification. It will also address many existing concerns about how skill levels are categorized under the existing system.

 

Milestone dates

With a new NOC on the way, here are some key dates to consider:

  • December 2020: Publication of the spreadsheet with the revised NOC codes.
  • Early 2021: Release of the full classification for the NOC code (including the leading statements, main duties, employment requirements, example titles, inclusions, exclusions, and additional information).
  • Spring 2022: Government programs and departments will implement the new NOC at their discretion. While Statistics Canada will implement in early 2021, Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is planning on Spring 2022 implementation, which will impact the Temporary Foreign Worker Program.

 

At this point, we don’t know of any specific changes to NOC 7511, how truck drivers will be classified in the TEER system, or if the new classification will result in changes to affected programs.

Stay tuned. Trucking HR Canada, the Canadian Trucking Alliance, and your provincial trucking association will have updates as they become available.