New data fromTrucking HR Canada (THRC) shows the acute truck driver shortage continues to grow at a torrid pace, threatening Canada’s supply chains and economic recovery, as industry leaders have warned.
The special report shows the number of truck driver vacancies surged for the third straight quarter to 25,560 between January and March of 2022 – a rise of 15.4% over the previous quarter when just under 23,000 vacancies were reported) and a whopping 73% year-over-year increase since Q1 of 2021.
Ontario and Quebec are looking to hire over 12,300 drivers and another 9,100 are needed in Alberta and BC.
Without interventions, the number of total trucking job vacancies throughout the Canadian industry is expected to jump to 55,000 by 2024.
A further indication of a tightening labour market for drivers is the proportion of vacancies that remain unfilled for extended periods of time, reports THRC. These protracted recruitment processes are costly to employers. In Q1 of 2022, nearly one half (49%) of truck driver vacancies have been posted for more than 90 days, up from 38% in Q1 2021.
“Without swift action, and a continued commitment from all stakeholders including government to address the issues around driver vacancies, these record-high trends will continue,” says Craig Faucette, Chief Program Officer, Trucking HR Canada.
The Canadian Trucking Alliance continues to work with governments on solving the driver shortage and other matters related to the supply chain. CTA has raised several regulatory and administrative barriers the governments of and the United States should work on with the trucking industry, which would help introduce more efficiencies in the supply chain and address inflation to transportation costs.
Regulatory items such as in transit, empty trailer moves, immigration policies and 10-sick day legislation were items raised by CTA that impact truck capacity; while administrative funding items like the twinning of highway 185 and its ability to open an Eastern-Canadian LCV network were also raised.
Border items like the reopening of FAST enrollment centres in Canada, strong support for continuous investments in customs hardware/software, streamlining food inspections, and improving the level of service by some in the custom broker industry, were also discussed.
On labour and driver capacity specifically, CTA emphasized the need for the Government of Canada to work with CTA to provide training dollars to the sector, better access to foreign labour and commence a widespread, national crackdown on Driver Inc. and support for THRC proposal on driver training
To read the full THRC report click here.