Hire Truck Drivers In India

Desh Ke Saarthi

Hire truck dri­vers in India for heavy vehicles,even though the road trans­port sec­tor in India is high­ly unor­ga­nized & expen­sive as com­pared to rail and water, it is the sec­ond high­est employ­ment gen­er­a­tor after agri­cul­ture sec­tor.

When you talk about road trans­port you can­not ignore the last mile con­nec­tiv­i­ty and back­bone of the indus­try and they are none oth­er than the truck dri­vers of India who are unfor­tu­nate­ly the most neglect­ed part of the indus­try.

The sec­tor is fac­ing a huge short­age of truck dri­vers due to which the indus­try and econ­o­my in par­tic­u­lar is tak­ing a hit.

As per data(The all India trans­porters wel­fare asso­ci­a­tion) dri­ver to truck ratio is 750 per 1000 vehi­cle cur­rent­ly and it was 1300 in 1982 which dropped to 890 in 2012 which result­ed in around 30% vehi­cles idle on any giv­en point.

We at dri­vers in India tried to under­stand the issue by meet­ing fleet oper­a­tors and truck dri­vers to under­stand their pain points and look where we can bring in the solu­tion.

Lets deep dive to under­stand the pain points through feed­back &  which we have gath­ered so far.

Pain Points Of  Truck Drivers In India

We have around thou­sands of reg­is­tered truck dri­vers from India for hire at the time of writ­ing this arti­cle.

Dur­ing our inter­ac­tion with them while on board­ing on our plat­form, we probed them and found com­mon pain points which we believe are the col­lec­tive rea­sons for short­age of truck dri­vers logis­tics indus­try is fac­ing.

Lack of respect & work dignity-

This the most com­mon feed­back we have got from all types of truck dri­vers dri­ving long haul appli­ca­tions like trail­ers, tanker, dumper, etc.

They say that on road they often become vic­tims of abuse from locals, author­i­ties & some­times abused and thrashed too.

Long working hours-

Most of the truck dri­vers com­plain about stress­ful work­ing hours which is burn­ing them out.

Long periods away from home-

Truck dri­vers gen­er­al­ly ply truck on long routes & return­ing back to fam­i­lies after extend­ed peri­od of times some­time as long as one year.

Few fleet oper­a­tors offer them the route which is near to their native place & allow dri­vers to stay back for a cou­ple of days in their home on return. 

But the truth is that not all the dri­vers are for­tu­nate enough to get this kind of oppor­tu­ni­ty.  

Vehicle related issues-

In our obser­va­tion we found that truck dri­vers are very choosy in select­ing the job and they focus more on the con­di­tion of vehi­cle, .

Fleet own­ers who have well main­tained vehi­cle have an advan­tage over the oth­er in terms of dri­ver reten­tion.

There is anoth­er angle to this as well, a bad main­tain vehi­cle gives less mileage and hence leads to quar­rel between the oper­a­tor and dri­ver.

Unorganized Salary Structures:

Due to unor­ga­nized nature of logis­tics indus­try dri­vers’ salary are high­ly unstruc­tured and made up of 4–5 dif­fer­ent ele­ments. 

Fleet oper­a­tor pro­claim that an aver­age long-haul com­mer­cial vehi­cle dri­ver earns in range of Rs. 30–40,000 per month depend­ing upon the route and vehi­cle.

But the dri­vers have to rely on uneth­i­cal prac­tices like fuel sell­ing, avoid­ing tolls etc. in order to reach the above fig­ure. 

The fixed salary of dri­vers we have inter­act­ed with falls in range of Rs. 8–10,000 only per month .

Improper roadside infrastructure & amenities st-

Unlike west­ern coun­tries, there is an absence of ade­quate road­side infra­struc­ture & basis ameni­ties for truck dri­vers like hygien­ic good, clear rest areas and bath­rooms.

Truck dri­vers often fail to find secure & safe places to do rest and con­stant­ly grap­ple with the risk of car­go theft and crime.  

Life risk on highways-

Due to tedious nature of job and insuf­fi­cient road side facil­i­ties, there is a high risk of occu­pa­tion­al haz­ard and acci­dent relat­ed death. 

Many insur­ance com­pa­nies do not pre­fer truck dri­ver cat­e­go­ry for extend­ing life& health insur­ance.

Police and RTO harass­ment-

Truck dri­vers often report that they are being harassed by RTO and police for no rea­sons and at times being abused and thrashed as well.

Lack of job/social security-

Being most of the time on wheels also bring in all sorts of health issues and acci­dent risk. 

More­over only a few fleet oper­a­tors offer social secu­ri­ty ben­e­fits & insur­ance in a man­dat­ed man­ner to their truck dri­vers.

Due to the above rea­sons no dri­ver wants to make his son a truck dri­ver or rec­om­mend some­body to join the pro­fes­sion.

Pain Points Of  Fleet Operators In India

You read about the pain points of truck dri­vers  now let us under­stand the gen­er­al pain points of fleet oper­a­tors which they face from  truck dri­vers.

Fuel Theft by Truck drivers:

Fuel theft is the most com­mon com­plaint we hear across the board, there are also  fleet oper­a­tors who are ok with this theft and say if the dri­ver man­ages to save on fuel  it is con­sid­ered as an incen­tive.

There are also cer­tain fleet oper­a­tors who deduct the dri­ver salary on sus­pi­cion of fuel theft & also thrash & shame the dri­vers.

Difficulty to find drivers due to perceived Negative perception:

Due to lega­cy issues some fleet oper­a­tors find it very dif­fi­cult to attract new dri­vers in their fleets. This has result­ed in reduc­tion of fleet sizes and also led to clo­sure of busi­ness. 

FO’s inabil­i­ty to source new dri­vers is also lead­ing to loss due to idle truck. 

High driver attrition rate:

Since most of the dri­vers don’t have a career path, com­pa­ny ben­e­fits, rewards and recog­ni­tion, loy­al­ty among truck dri­vers is very low and they switch jobs too fre­quent­ly with­out any inti­ma­tion.

Irresponsible behavior by driver:

Due to lack of loy­al­ty & reck­less behav­ior by dri­vers, some­times trucks are left aban­doned at road­side by dri­vers. This cre­ate addi­tion­al uncer­tain­ty and loss­es for the fleet oper­a­tor.

Driver sourcing

Unfor­tu­nate­ly, there was no for­mal way to hire truck dri­vers in India till now. Fleet oper­a­tors need to depend on hir­ing dri­vers though ref­er­ence and guar­an­tors.

The guar­an­tors are those who bring group of dri­vers whom they usu­al­ly know per­son­al­ly and place them at fleet oper­a­tor. How­ev­er, it is a two-edged sword. 

If the guar­an­tor has some dis­pute with the fleet oper­a­tor, he takes away all his dri­vers along with him and the vehi­cles are left idle overnight incur­ring huge loss­es to fleet oper­a­tor.

Suggestions To Bring In More Truck Drivers In Profession  

Build­ing charm towards the pro­fes­sion:

All the indus­try stake­hold­ers should con­tribute to build aspi­ra­tion and charm around the job though the work has start­ed in this direc­tion.

Tata Motors affirm­ing its com­mit­ment towards improv­ing the life of Dri­ver com­mu­ni­ty in India has launched sev­er­al dri­ver wel­fare pro­grams and schemes.

Orga­niz­ing the logis­tics sec­tor:

Logis­tics sec­tor as dis­cussed above is high­ly unor­ga­nized. 

We have observed that the orga­nized play­ers have less attri­tion rate and dis­putes after hir­ing truck dri­vers in India which results in good brand val­ue among truck dri­ver com­mu­ni­ty.

Improved salary struc­ture: 

Cur­rent pay­ment struc­ture is high­ly unstruc­tured and needs a reform so that truck dri­vers have high­er vis­i­bil­i­ty on their month­ly take home salaries.

Social secu­ri­ty ben­e­fits should be a part of dri­vers’ pay pack­ages as the nature of work is high hazardous.Ministry of labour and employ­ment must step in to lay down the guide­lines for this sec­tor.

No harass­ment from RTO/Po­lice-

The gov­ern­ment should step in to stop such kinds of harass­ments and the con­cerned per­son should be dealt strict­ly if found doing so.

Pit­stop for rest­ing-

The stake­hold­ers should build rest­ing stops on high­ways exclu­sive­ly for truck dri­vers. 

Though, some play­ers like Tata motors have start­ed this project, how­ev­er more needs to be done in this direc­tion.

Look­ing to hire truck dri­vers in India?

We at ‘Dri­vers in India” have start­ed a project called ‘Desh Ke Saarthi’ where we reg­is­ter truck dri­vers on our plat­form who are inter­est­ed in truck dri­ver job. 

We have also on board­ed sev­er­al fleet oper­a­tors across dif­fer­ent appli­ca­tions & routes on our plat­form for offer­ing jobs to dri­vers. 

We are sup­port­ed by Tata motors for train­ing of the truck dri­vers. For more info please get in touch with us.

Call us ‑8424867000


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