Leading from the Front

leading from the front

EVERY YEAR WE hear about more and more women entering the logistics field, and while it is growing, only 22% of transport workers are women, and only 17% are in executive/chief supply chain officer roles, according to Gartner’s 2020 Supply Chain Survey. There’s a great need for increased visibility to this industry’s fantastic career opportunities.

People are crucial to the 3PL business. We have no other assets. We depend on our Team Members to represent our brand to every carrier, customer, and vendor they talk to. We rely on them to use their knowledge, creativity, ingenuity, and expertise to get business done. We count on them to build relationships, trust and help improve people’s lives through logistics.

How do you promote a career in logistics in an industry as fast-paced and competitive as ours, where capacity is tight and there is no shortage of problems to solve for shippers? How do you build and retain a dynamic team?

While we don’t have it all figured out yet, here are a few things that we do at Trinity to not only encourage logistics career paths but build a long-standing, strong team and culture.



When you look at most job listings nowadays, what do you see? One, two, or sometimes five years of experience needed. While direct experience in a field is excellent, it can be challenging to find the right people you need for your team with that exact experience, nor does it help gain more visibility to the logistics industry as a career option.

While this may not be workable for all positions, any position that can be considered entry-level doesn’t have to require direct experience. Instead, we look for transferable skill sets.


Identify and find skills. Finding someone with experience in skills for the role you are recruiting for opens a whole new world of possible applicants. Some of our best and longest Trinity Team Members came from positions far outside of logistics but had skills or experience, such as customer service or phone systems, that made them a perfect fit for Trinity.

Consider interns. We have a great internship program to help encourage and introduce logistics careers while helping recent graduates, or those still in school, build upon their skill set. Many of our interns have stayed on long-term as open positions became available. Sometimes just getting started and learning about logistics makes way for them to significantly expand their career possibilities in the world of supply chain careers.

Have a strong referral program. Our Team Members are our greatest asset for recruiting new talent. We all know word of mouth is best for promotion, so who better to promote your open logistics positions and what it’s like to work at your company than your Team Members? You’re more likely to get good-quality candidates by incentivizing the referral. Referred candidates are also faster to hire and make onboarding more straightforward, providing a strong employee experience.


Continuous improvement is not only one of our Guiding Values here at Trinity, but it’s part of our mission statement. Creating a culture of constant improvement helps attract and retain great people within the logistics industry.

There are several benefits to applying a culture of continuous improvement to your company, such as having more engaged employees, lower employee turnover, and creating a proactive learning culture.

Creating a culture of continuous improvement starts by prioritizing and providing resources for education for all Team Members. Giving opportunities to learn and grow keeps engagement up, helps teams feel supported, improves service, strengthens the leadership pipeline, improves succession in career paths, and creates longevity within an organization.

We’ve made continuous improvement a priority by regularly creating and tracking KPIs, from a company level through to a department and personal Team Member level. Our Education and Leadership Teams focus on helping our team continuously improve, with required and optional classes offered all year long.

Growth is all about learning to be better tomorrow than you were today. By applying that to our company culture at Trinity, we’ve not only seen our business succeed, but more importantly, our Team Members grow.

continuous improvement and growth


We cannot speak of continuous improvement and growth without speaking about coaching. It’s imperative to offer mentoring and coaching within our industry and organizations. Educational resources are great, but we also need to provide shared experiences and wisdom through mentorship to help our team further understand the application of the learning.

Coaching takes growth to a whole new level of application and accountability for the mentor and the mentee. This is where growing and learning take root and gain a foothold in applying knowledge faster and better.

At Trinity, we do this with our GPS program, which sets up experienced Team Members as mentors to new Team Members. We also offer our Aspire Leadership program, a year-long program for those interested in growing their leadership skills. This course pairs both growth and coaching as those enrolled work together to learn and teach one another.

Placing importance on and having an intentional plan for coaching in any organization creates support, encouragement, and growth within the team.



To date, 54% of Trinity’s Team Members are women, and 23% of our women are in leadership—myself included.

Ultimately, I’ve never looked at women in logistics and thought of it as different or unique. Anyone can be a part of the logistics industry and part of improving the lives of those around us. It really comes down to bringing more awareness to the logistics industry as a potential career path and making it easier to get creative, driven, and talented people started. Then, it is up to us to provide opportunities to grow to their full potential and be a place that people want to be a part of. The more we can do that, the more driven, creative, and dynamic people we can attract to logistics!

Sarah Ruffcorn, CTB, is president of Trinity Logistics, leading all aspects of the company. Trinity Logistics, a Burris Logistics Company, has seven regional service center logistics offices and over 100 agent offices throughout the country. A big believer in servant leadership, Sarah coaches and mentor’s other leaders to assist in their growth and success. She currently serves on the TIA Board, is co-chair of TIA’s Women in Logistics Committee, and the Nanticoke Memorial Hospital Board. Learn more at trinitylogistics.com.