Star Tribune Offers $3,000 Signing Bonus for New Fleet Drivers

Star Tribune Offers $3,000 Signing Bonus for New Fleet Drivers

Intense competition driving new incentives for applicants.

Employers everywhere are scrambling to hire employees. Many are offering higher pay, more perks and other incentives to lure applicants. Companies are dueling each other to offer the most attractive packages.

The Star Tribune is now offering a $3,000 signing bonus for new hires to work as fleet drivers for the company. The company just implemented the bonus offer last week and broadcast the news by sending out emails to approximately 160,000 subscribers.

The email stressed that these were “immediate openings” at the state’s largest media operation.

“The market is extremely competitive for drivers right now,” said Steve Yaeger, spokesman for Star Tribune. “These are good union jobs and given the nature of our core business we have less seasonal fluctuation than many operators. In addition to transporting our own products we distribute newspapers and magazines for other publishers throughout the state and have a growing freight hauling business. We consider our fleet operations — equipment, drivers, know-how — an important asset and another way to diversify our revenues.”

The email indicated that pay for fulltime positions starts at $19.14 an hour and that the starting pay for part-time posts is $17.64 per hour. The signing bonus is paid out in increments over an employee’s first year on the job.

Yaeger said that the bonuses are driven by the intense competition in the market and “somewhat higher than normal turnover, exacerbated by the extremely tight market for drivers right now. Everyone is hiring — FedEx, Amazon, freight haulers, etc.”

Yaeger said that the Star Tribune is looking to hire 12 fulltime and part-time drivers and added that the widely circulated email is “already yielding candidates.” When fully staffed, the Star Tribune employs 60 fleet drivers.

Fleet drivers primarily drive copies of the newspaper from the printing plant to distribution depots. Yaeger noted that the company also does contract hauling and hopes to do more.

“We are looking to expand that business,” said Yaeger.