BC Trucking Association Announces New International Trucking Reference for Motor Carriers Hiring Immigrant Drivers

For immediate release: 
Dec 19, 2013

Langley, British Columbia—The BC Trucking Association (BCTA) today released the International Trucking Reference: Roads, Rules, and Drivers, a guide to the truck driving environment in 10 countries to help motor carriers understand how the skills and experience of an immigrant driver might translate to a professional career in BC.

BCTA developed the International Trucking Reference with input from motor carriers about the type of information they need to make hiring decisions about job candidates who have gained the bulk of their commercial driving experience outside Canada. Included are pointers on the reasons for recruiting drivers from the immigrant labour pool, tips for finding and recruiting immigrant candidates, and considerations for successfully interviewing candidates from another culture.

The Reference is a human resources tool for industry employers facing a huge driver shortage, which the Conference Board of Canada has projected will see up to 33,000 empty seats by 2020. As one of two BCTA projects made possible by the Immigrant Employment Council of BC (IEC-BC) and funded by the Government of Canada and the Province of BC, the International Trucking Reference will help address immigrant talent hiring and retention challenges faced by BC employers.

“Given that most BC trucking companies are small to mid-sized, they may not have the staff to research the background of a job applicant with foreign experience. BCTA is pleased that funding from the federal and provincial governments has allowed us to create the International Trucking Reference, a dependable, easy-to-use resource that will save employers time and help them make better-informed hiring decisions,” said Louise Yako, BCTA President & CEO.

The International Trucking Reference was authored by Ottawa-based Graybridge Malkam, a training and consulting firm specializing in organizational diversity. BCTA carriers recommended a “top 10” list of countries to include in the guide: India, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, the Philippines, Poland, the Republic of Korea, Romania, Russia, the Ukraine and the United Kingdom. The Reference provides an accurate profile of the driving environment in each country, including a description of the terrain and climate, commercial vehicle types, typical driver responsibilities, licensing and training standards, infrastructure, and regulations, among others.

“Immigrants who call BC home bring a wealth of talent to our province – talent that employers can tap into as long as they know how to recognize the skills and experience. BCTA’s project will help employers understand the working environments of qualified professional drivers who have immigrated from other countries, and give them confidence they are hiring people with the skills their companies – and our economy – need,” said Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Responsible for Labour, Shirley Bond.

The International Trucking Reference complements BCTA’s IDRIVE – the Immigrant Driver Readiness – Industry Validation and Engagement project, which BCTA is piloting now. IDRIVE participants complete four tests, including a road test, to assess their experience and readiness for work in BC. With an immigrant candidate’s IDRIVE report in hand and details from the country profiles in the International Trucking Reference, BC employers can take on new drivers with greater confidence in their ability to operate on North American roads.

“Employers know firsthand the challenges and opportunities in hiring and integrating skilled immigrants into their workplaces. Resources like the International Trucking Reference are a boon to both employers and immigrants,” said Kelly Pollack, IEC-BC Executive Director.

The International Trucking Reference: Roads, Rules, and Drivers is available to industry employers on BCTA’s website at www.bctrucking.com/careers. More information about IDRIVE is also available on the landing page. The Asia Pacific Gateway Skills Table is managing both projects on BCTA’s behalf.

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BCTA, a member-based, non-profit, non-partisan advocacy organization, is the recognised voice of the provincial motor carrier industry, representing over 1,200 truck and motor coach fleets and over 250 suppliers to the industry. BCTA members operate over 13,000 vehicles, employ 26,000 people, and generate over $2 billion in revenue annually in the province.

The Asia Pacific Gateway Skills Table is a non-profit, regional partnership between labour, business and education/training institutions. Its mission is to ensure the Asia Pacific Gateway has enough people with the right skills and training to meet its needs.

The Immigrant Employment Council of British Columbia (IEC-BC) stimulates the integration of skilled immigrant talent into the province’s workforce by fostering solutions, building connections and being a champion to help employers attract and retain skilled immigrant talent. IEC-BC was awarded funds in 2012 by the Province of BC to design, implement and manage the Employer Innovation Fund which supports the development of 11 innovative projects that address immigrant talent hiring and retention challenges faced by BC employers. Find out more at www.iecbc.ca

For more information, please contact: Trace Acres, Vice President
604-888-5319 Mobile: 604-970-1795 Toll free: 1-800-565-2282