published Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

Chattanooga-based Covenant boosts pay, incentives to keep, recruit more drivers

Covenant Transport is based southwest of downtown Chattanooga next to Interstate 24.
Covenant Transport is based southwest of downtown Chattanooga next to Interstate 24.
Photo by John Rawlston.

Covenant Transport Inc. has boosted its mileage rates and tuition reimbursement for drivers to help maintain and recruit workers as the shipping industry rebounds from the recession.

The Chattanooga-based trucking company announced today that it raised its mileage pay by 6 percent to help attract hazmat-certified team drivers for its over-the-road program.

“We are excited and honored to announce these recent upgrades to our professional driver pay packages,” Covenant Chief Operating Officer Sam Hough said in a statement today. “Professional drivers are the cornerstone of our industry and we are committed to doing whatever it takes to hire, retain, and cultivate a safe professional driving force.”

Other incentives Covenant has added include a new tuition reimbursement program, which could reimburse new students up to $15,000; a new “Peak Pay” program that will reward professional drivers that haul loads for the company from October through January; and a new program that holds our company financially accountable to meeting our professional drivers’ home time needs.

Last month, U.S. Xpress Enterprises announced it was implementing a new pay scale that on average pays 13 percent more per mile for its over-the-road, solo, nondedicated drivers. Such drivers carry freight across 48 states for U.S. Xpress, one of the nation's biggest long-haul trucking firms.

American trucking companies are trying to fill positions to meet the rising demand for shipped goods and to fill the void left by aging truckers, and truckers disqualified or disgruntled with the business because of personal demands, government regulations or increased drug and licensing requirements.

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