(ABC4) – With the U.S. dealing with a nationwide shortage of truck drivers, Walmart has announced that they will be offering their truck drivers a salary of up to $110,000 a year.
In a press release, the company said the latest investment not only gives first-year truck drivers the ability to make up to $110,000 but also gives drivers who have been with Walmart the opportunity to earn even more.
The average salary for a long-haul driver is $56,491 a year, Walmart said in an infographic on the company’s websites. Walmart’s plan is to double that number.
The salary raise puts Walmart on the same playing field as Sysco which also advertises that its employees can make up to $110,000 a year.
Walmart also announced the launch of the first Walmart Private Fleet Development Program, a 12-week program where supply chain associates in the Dallas, Texas, and Dover, Delaware, areas earned their commercial driver’s license (CDL) and became full-fledged Private Fleet Walmart drivers.
Last October, the American Trucking Association (AHA) announced that the current driver shortage had risen to 80,000. A number the AHA considers high for the trucking industry.
The AHA said that trucking will need to recruit nearly one million new drivers in order to close the gap caused by demand for freight.
“Because are a number of factors driving the shortage, we have to take a number of different approaches,” Costello said. “The industry is raising pay at five times the historic average, but this isn’t just a pay issue. We have an aging workforce, a workforce that is overwhelmingly male, and finding ways to address those issues is key to narrowing the shortage.
Walmart already includes access to its Live Better U program for its employees where the company covers the cost of tuition and books for a college degree.