If there was one positive aspect of 2020, it was the increased demand for delivery services and route delivery drivers.

In 2019, over 103 billion parcels were delivered, with that figure forecast to double by 2026. From 2019 to 2020, the number of grocery delivery customers in the United States increased by 133 percent.

There are now over 2.14 billion online shoppers in the world, up nearly 30% from 2016.

It’s no surprise that people are searching for distribution positions.

You’ll need professional delivery drivers if you’re running a delivery service. However, with so many people using third-party distribution systems like GrubHub and DoorDash, they can be difficult to come by. It’s so difficult that current hires being lost, breaking down, or stuck in transit can cause major delays. Worse still, customers complain about the drivers’ bad behavior.

Fortunately, by recruiting people with the right qualifications, you can avoid these conditions.

Table of Contents

The 8 Skills the Best Route Delivery Drivers Have in Common

a happy route delivery driver holding a package and a clipboard

#1 Have excellent customer service

Whether or not your employees engage with customers, the aim of distribution is to build relationships. Many of the skills on this list are customer service related:

Organizational Problem-Solving Guided Communication

Customers who are delighted with your delivery service and the company from which they purchased it are more likely to use your delivery service and the company from which they purchased it again.

In the end, the route delivery drivers must put customers and their needs first.

#2 Have safe and effective driving skills

One of the most difficult aspects of distribution driving is the lack of time. Customers anticipate deliveries arriving on time, if not ahead of schedule. Before you employ non-CDL route delivery drivers, make sure they can balance safety and performance. Concentration and navigation are two other similar abilities. Your workers must be able to concentrate for extended periods of time while driving. It should not be difficult for them to optimize their routes.

If a candidate can do all of this while avoiding road rage, they’re a keeper.

#3 They stay on top of vehicle maintenance

route delivery driver performing vehicle mainenance

Is it a no-brainer that your future route delivery drivers would be able to survive on the road? Mishaps on the road happen more often than you’d like. Accidents, breakdowns, and other calamities may cause significant delays in deliveries. You can benefit the most from drivers who can solve these issues on a simple level. Don’t waste your time and resources on someone who can’t take care of a vehicle’s most basic needs.

#4 Clear and concise communication skills

route delivery driver giving a thumbs up

Your company’s success depends on effective communication. Candidates for these positions must be able to interact effectively both orally and in writing. Look for people who are polite, courteous, and stay calm in the face of adversity. If they interact with customers often, they must communicate in a cool, friendly, and supportive manner.

A good driver also sees chances and reports something that seems to be out of the ordinary. They would be better able to deal with unclear or contradictory issues if they have an optimistic, can-do attitude.

#5 Problem-solving skills

It is common for the unexpected to occur. What if there’s an accident on the road? How does the driver you’re interviewing deal with adversity? What happens if they get separated? Even consumer experiences require problem-solving. What is your candidate’s strategy for dealing with a frustrated customer? A successful problem solver’s adaptability and creativity are telling characteristics.

#6 They are organized

Drivers can easily become overloaded with paperwork, various items, and sometimes difficult navigation to navigate. Anyone you recruit must be well-organized in order to keep everything in order.

  • How do they juggle several tasks at the same time?
  • Is their vehicle’s interior filthy or spotless?

Simultaneously, spending so much time arranging their cars or making required notes slows down the delivery time. That’s bad for company, and it’s even worse for customer satisfaction.

Time management, punctuality, and attention to detail are examples of other organizational skills. In each region, ask interviewees to provide examples of demonstrated skill. You may ask the same question of their references.

#7 They know how to use technology

route delivery driver using EasyRoutes route planning app

Digital skills are a must these days. Computers, route-planning software, and other distribution technologies are used by many delivery companies. Inquire about applicants’ digital skills during the new recruit interview. Drivers must be able to use a phone and any other productivity equipment the company uses, even though they are not programmers.

#8 They are physically fit

Heavy shipments are mostly handled by delivery drivers. Is your candidate capable of lifting the necessary weight? Is it possible for them to lift it safely? Drivers are more susceptible to back and neck injuries because they can sit for a long time before lifting. As an employer, you want to limit your responsibility for injuries as much as possible. Hire someone who will not jeopardize themselves – and, as a result, your business. Hire only those who can lift the minimum weight you need to eliminate this danger.

How to Hire Skilled Route Drivers

You’re aware of the qualities to look for in delivery applicants. You must now locate those drivers. Start by improving two aspects of recruiting: work listings and interviews, if that challenge seems overwhelming.

Helpful Hints for Job Postings

Since job boards are often where you meet potential drivers for the first time, job postings should do the majority of the “weeding” for you by providing succinct, straightforward, and targeted material.

Create a work posting that uses bullet points and headings to list the job’s terms in an easily scannable format. Have a short overview of the employer, the work type, the pay per hour/minimum wage, and whether the position is full-time or part-time. Often, the job description should not be overlooked. Define who you are, what your work description is, and what your responsibilities are. Be as descriptive as possible. Include all roles and qualifications, such as necessary skills, minimum lifting requirements, and prior experience. Inform candidates on how to apply and what kind of experience they should include:

  • Should they send a resume?
  • A cover letter?
  • Do they have references?

Consider a job posting to be a letter to your potential employee, inviting them to join your team. Write in a language that they can understand. Make it appealing and interesting to them. They will come to you if you successfully market yourself to your ideal candidate.

Tips for Interviewing Drivers

After you’ve weeded out the less-than-ideal applicants, you can start conducting interviews. Questions that are unfair or may be construed as discriminatory should be avoided. If you’re stumped for questions, consider the following:

  • How would you rate your ability to navigate?
  • What would you do if you had a flat tire?
  • What would you say to a dissatisfied customer?
  • What would you do in X situation as part of your driver job?
  • Do you have a clean driving record?

Check each route delivery driver’s driving record before interviewing them for driver jobs to see if their answers to the above questions match. Inquire for references as well. Two or three trustworthy references will provide insight into a person’s ability to meet work requirements. Better still, as a best practice, ask the top managers to refer people who they believe would be good employees. While this form of recruiting is risky, getting a recommendation from a trustworthy employee will save you weeks of time and effort.

It’s possible that you’re having difficulty attracting talent. As a last resort, consider recruiting and training high-potential employees. A fast learner with excellent customer service skills is preferable to a highly trained driver with poor social skills.

Enhance your Route Delivery Drivers Skills with a Route Planning App like EasyRoutes

Do your drivers possess the following eight abilities? If not, train them – and make it simpler by using a route delivery app like EasyRoutes to help with the operation. EasyRoutes boosts efficiency while lowering costs and saving time. There will be no more excuses, and no more petrol will be wasted. Concentrate on your business rather than route planning. Your company will soar with professional employees and a well-planned path.