Median pay for truck drivers is on par with the national median for U.S. households, while the trucking industry offers drivers “competitive” benefits, according to a new study from the American Trucking Associations.
Its 2014 Driver Compensation Study, which covers more than 130 fleets and more than 130,000 drivers, also shows annual employee driver compensation varied among carrier and trailer types.
The 2013 median pay for truckload national, irregular route van drivers was just over $46,000, while private fleet van drivers earned 58% more, at $73,000. While mileage-base pay packages are common, three out of four fleets pay drivers in multiple ways, according to the survey. The most frequent approach taken by a carrier utilizing two base pay methods was compensation by mileage and by hour.
“Fleets are raising pay and offering generous benefit packages in order to attract and keep their drivers in the face of a growing driver shortage,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “As the economy grows, we are seeing an ever more competitive driver market,” Costello said. “The data in this report will be critical for fleets looking to recruit and retain the best drivers.”
Among the study’s other key findings:
- In seven of the nine categories of drivers covered by the survey, pay met or exceeded the U.S. median household income of just over $53,000.
- Nearly 80% of truckload fleets offered drivers paid holidays.
- And 80% of private carriers not only offer a 401(k) retirement plan, but match employee contributions.
A copy of the report can be ordered through ATA’s website.