SALABERRY-DE-VALLEYFIELD, QC — It's a first in Quebec, trucking company Andy Transport is training potential truck drivers and offers to hire them as soon as they earn their Class 1 licence.
In addition, if the new truck drivers stay with the company for a predetermined amount of time, the company will absorb all the costs of training and internship.
Executive vice president Andreea Crisan explains, "It may seem like a paradox, but while there is a shortage of truck drivers all over North America, new drivers have trouble getting hired. That's why we have created a safe and structured one-stop shop for those who wish to enter the industry and join our company."
This type of model — an internal company-based training centre — already exists in the United States and is becoming a must in Canada. Last April, when the company was in high-growth mode with an urgent need for quality personnel, Andy Transport took the initiative of creating its own program to train and professionally develop the skills of its candidates. This was the first group of truck drivers trained on-site through this program.
The training offers theoretical classes, simulation classes and on the road practice. For the first few months after receiving the Class 1 licence, new truck drivers refine their skills with a professional, qualified and experienced driver-trainer at their side. Once they have completed this step, if they meet the carrier's requirements, they will be hired by the company and take to the road alone.
Technology plays an important role in this professional learning process. The simulator, acquired in June, provides a quick, effective, and safe learning environment, adapted to each student. Instructors adjust the driving experience for each user, providing scenarios with varying road conditions (traffic flow, weather conditions, time of day and night, obstacles and road work), and in environments of all kinds (parking lots, loading docks, country roads, expressways, climbing and descents).
This allows the trucking company to ensure it is hiring new truck drivers who have incorporated company values — good behaviour, competence, high performance, safety and team work.
Currently, there is a shortage of 25,000 truckers in Canada. The 300,000 truckers currently employed are aging and retiring more quickly than they are being replaced. This is due to the prejudices about the career as well as the salary and work conditions provided by employers, with demand exploding.
The training offered by Andy Transport is uniquely attractive to young people seeking a life style and work conditions that match personal and career plans, modern tools and high-quality training as well as to new immigrants, women wanting to work in non-traditional environments and people dreaming of a new career.
As Andy Transport's president says, "We invest in our employees."