In the dynamic world of logistics and transportation, the recruitment costs for truck drivers are a critical aspect that directly impacts a company’s bottom line. But what does it really cost to bring a new truck driver on board? This post delves into the various facets of recruitment costs, drawing insights from industry expert Mary Ilieva.

The Significance of Cost Management in Recruitment

Effective cost management is the cornerstone of any successful recruitment strategy. It’s not just about finding the right candidate; it’s also about understanding and controlling the expenses involved. From advertising the position to training the new hire, every step has its associated costs. A robust cost management system helps businesses estimate and allocate their budgets more efficiently, ensuring that resources are used judiciously.

The Real Numbers: Turnover and Recruitment Costs

According to the Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute, the average cost of turnover per truck driver is approximately $13,566. This figure, however, can vary significantly, with costs ranging from $3,696 to a staggering $34,153 in some cases. Moreover, The Drivers World suggests that the expenses involved in recruiting a driver and making them productive can range between $6,000 and $12,000, potentially higher in certain markets. These numbers highlight the economic impact of driver turnover and the importance of retaining talent.

Breaking Down the Costs: Internal vs. External

Recruitment costs can be broadly categorized into internal and external expenses. Internal costs include in-house activities such as referral programs, sign-on bonuses, training, orientation, and salaries of the recruitment team. On the other hand, external costs are those incurred outside the organization, like fees for recruitment agencies, job advertisements, job board fees, social media marketing, website costs, background checks, and application tracking systems.

Calculating Your Recruitment Costs

To get a clear picture of your recruitment expenses, sum up all the costs (both internal and external) and divide by the number of drivers hired over a given period. This calculation will give you the average recruitment cost per driver, an essential metric for budgeting and financial planning.


Understanding and managing the costs of recruiting truck drivers is crucial for the financial health of any transportation company. By analyzing these costs and implementing strategies to optimize them, businesses can not only save money but also improve their recruitment processes, leading to better retention rates and a more efficient workforce.

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