As a result of aging driver demographics and a growing demand for trucking services, the for-hire trucking industry can expect to face a driver supply and demand gap of nearly 25,000 drivers by 2020 in a business-as-usual scenario. If improvement in labour productivity is lower in the coming years, the gap could exceed 30,000 drivers.
This supply and demand gap will not only affect the trucking industry, but also the ability of its customers to do business and, ultimately, consumers in the prices they pay for goods.
It will be important to convince customers of the need to address the situation now and to work with them to develop strategies that make the best use of drivers’ time. The industry feels that there is an important role for government to play in developing policies and regulatory frameworks that establish national occupational, training, and licensing standards that recognize truck driving as a skilled occupation. Any policy support that enhances productivity will help to mitigate the impact of the lack of available drivers.