Where do we start?! 2022 has been an exciting year for all of us at Van Kam Freightways as we celebrated our 75th Diamond Anniversary of serving Western Canadian businesses since 1947. At the top of our list, we held our largest-ever employee appreciation event to thank our team for their service and dedication throughout the years. It was essential for us to recognize and celebrate our people, whose hard work and commitment to delivering excellence are what drive our success as an organization.
In support of our people, customers and communities, we also marked our anniversary year with a renewed focus on our company’s Values and Purpose Statement. Also on the menu was a brand-new website and a custom commemorative logo designed for our unique anniversary-themed graphics, which we custom-wrapped around all our new trailers coming off the assembly line in Montreal.
Our people are our backbone, and we are grateful for every one of them at all levels of our company; our drivers, dock workers, and office staff all come together as one unit. They deliver top-end customer service and fulfill delivery schedules for businesses that ship their freight to local communities throughout Western Canada. Within our various teams, we welcomed new faces and celebrated work anniversaries and promotions – like finally having our first female terminal manager – a testament to our commitment to our DEVELOP value. Van Kam has a diverse and talented team that makes us special, and we will continue to prioritize their growth and development in the future. To those that have retired from service this year, we’re grateful for all you have done for us!
To help our customers achieve more, we took our digital transformation journey to a new level. We started by revamping our website to improve the user experience and make it easier to access our services. We also made improvements to our E-Services allowing users to get quotes and schedule pick-ups without the need to call or email us.
Additionally, we introduced new features like Van Kam E-Signature to minimize paper waste and make shipping records more manageable and quicker to access. These changes will make it more efficient for our customers to do business with us while supporting our Green Initiatives to be more sustainable in our operations.
This year we increased our acknowledgement of all our truck drivers and their invaluable service to our company and the country. We show our care and support for our drivers by ensuring they have access to the best tools and equipment to do the jobs they love. Throughout 2022, we added new trucks, trailers and related equipment to our fleet, and despite rising fuel costs, we also continued our 50-cent fuel cap for owner-operators (which has been in place since 1973!). To really show our appreciation, Van Kam raised the wages of our drivers to be in the top range of the highest paid drivers in Western Canada. Without truck drivers, goods don’t get delivered to local communities and product shortages arise; not to mention, many freight shipments are downright essential – – as noted in this story about one of our retired drivers who used to transport a mobile MRI unit between hospitals in Kamloops, Prince George, and Kelowna.
Van Kam believes in giving back to the communities we live and operate in and 2022 was no different. We were proud to support several charitable organizations and causes that are close to our hearts.
Some of the year’s key charitable highlights included the sponsorship of the United Way of Northern BC’s (UWNBC) Tree of Lights in Prince George, and supporting Tree Canada and its efforts toward building a sustainable future by planting trees across Canada.
We also sponsored other charity organizations like: The Surrey Women’s Center, Greater Vancouver & Surrey Foodbank, Coastal Mental Health Foundation, Breakfast Club of Canada, Canucks Autism Network, Hope Air, the Surrey Hospitals Foundation, BC Children’s Hospital Foundation, and the Magic of Christmas Foundation. We commend these outstanding organizations and many other charities we support (see full list here) that are making a difference in our communities.
With COVID somewhat in the rearview mirror, 2022 has been an exciting and memorable year for Van Kam and its customers, as ‘normalcy’ made a modest return into our vocabulary – – about time! For 2023, we wish you all the best and thank you for your loyalty and partnership as we continue uniting communities and improving lives in 2023.