COOKEVILLE – Commercial drivers are in high demand, and Averitt Express has enhanced its incentive programs for both veterans and recent CDL-A holders looking to join the industry.
The most recent enhancement is an across-the-board pay raise for regional drivers and shortening the amount of time to reach top-out pay. This comes on the heels of Averitt establishing a driver convenience center at its Tifton, Ga., facility, rolling out a fuel efficiency bonus and expanding its finishing school program for student drivers.
“We’re committed to providing exceptional service to our customers, which is why we add only the best of the best to our team of associates,” said Elise Leeson, Averitt’s director of human resources. “As capacity tightens, the demand for quality drivers grows. We’re continually looking for ways to improve the environment for our drivers, and these adjustments are a step in that direction.”
Leeson explained that the pay increase impacts all levels of regional drivers, from those with a year or more experience to those straight out of driving school. It covers Averitt’s regional truckload, flatbed and dedicated flex drivers. The fuel efficiency bonus is a quarterly program that adds extra dollars to drivers’ paychecks for helping the company conserve fuel and improve miles per gallon.
In addition to the pay adjustment, Averitt has recently opened a driver convenience center in Tifton. It features several amenities, such as washers and dryers, a lounge with recliners and a big-screen television, and free Wi-Fi for associates to access the Internet.
Averitt’s finishing school is a weeklong training course for truckload drivers going through the company’s student program. Drivers who have recently graduated from an approved school or who have just a few months of experience over the past year are sent to one of the finishing cchools located in Cookeville, Lexington, Ky., Jackson, Tenn., or Decatur, Ala., after completing their road training from an Averitt driver-trainer. Students learn how to properly back their tractors and other detailed safety procedures related to equipment handling. With the finishing school, Averitt has seen a 60 percent decrease in backing accidents among student drivers since its inception a year ago.