Wil-Trans-The First And Only Company I Called

Topic 17755 | Page 1

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Jason G.'s Comment
member avatar

Hey guys, my name is Jason. Am a husband and father to three kids. I started looking into trucking about a year ago, surprisingly at the suggestion of my wife. Not because she wants me out of the house, but I am the main bread winner out of the two of us and she mostly stays home with the kids. When I first started looking I called Roadmaster. A year ago and then in last two months, and have to say I wanted that to work because have heard it can be better to pay your way than go with company sponsored training. But that's until I discovered Wil-Trans.

First I called Jim Palmer but since they are also under same company as Wil-Trans , they are putting me with Wil-Trans because I live in East coast and Jim Palmer is west coast.

My experience has been great with these guys. Initial phone conversation they tried to deter me from getting into trucking, but after talking and seeing that I am former military and know what I'm getting into as far as being away from home is concerned, they've found me to be a good fit for their company. And I find they are a great fit for me.

The training is longer but I feel much better with the safety aspect of getting longer training because I'd hate to be put through a month or few weeks of trainer time and then get my own truck. This way there is more time to get me good at being self-sufficient when I do get to solo time. I called them beginning of December and start next Monday for orientation, so as long as they have the spaces and you're ready to go, it can be a really smooth process. All my background checks went fine. The only thing that hung us up was getting a hold of employer and past employers for employment verification.

Have been hustling this last week at my current job and doing other side work to get some money before I go. Only get 200 a week advance for the next 3 weeks they said, and then 600 minimum after I get my CDL for training time. Have been working through study materials for CDL permit but has been hard to make the time, so have to really cram it in over the next few days and then especially when I get there next week. Have been through college, and do well on tests so I'm not too concerned. But hope that's not me just being overconfident.

I will keep updates here as I go through the program. But if youre looking into company sponsored training and it's only a one year commitment, and that's how you're paying for it. They don't take anything out for schooling but forgive it after one-year with them, this is a great company so far. Initial impressions have been awesome. They are friendly, focus on the whole family involvement in your decision to do trucking. They even called my wife to get to know her a bit and to ensure she's on board with my decision. So if a company is taking those steps I think they have your interests at heart and also their own. So it's a win-win. Talk to you again next week after orientation.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

Wil-Trans:

Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

Danny G.'s Comment
member avatar

Hey Jason. I had a really good impression of Palmer/Wil-Trans when I talked with them. Seems like a good place to get started. Best of luck to you!

Wil-Trans:

Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

Jason G.'s Comment
member avatar

Thank you. They have been great talking with on the phone. When I called Roadmaster they were pretty impersonal. Talked all about the money I'd make and how they are the Harvard of trucking schools. But then that recruiter didn't care about my questions about what companies recruit through their school. He said it didn't matter what your first company is your first year. But that's a load of crap. I'm all about loyalty and sticking it out with employers, so my first choice will ideally be my only choice, at least for a while. Not one of these guys who uses a company to get trained only to ditch them after my one year commitment. I'm hoping that I love working for them longer than a year because they care a lot about retention and I think it shows in how good they are in the initial hiring process. If you're treated like a number I think you treat them equally with the mindset that it doesn't really matter how long your commitment is. But with a smaller company like Wil-Trans they treat you really good it seems like and so you don't feel like a number to them and you don't feel like it will only be a year thing to get you where you want to be after. It would be cool to stay with them for good after the first year. Because I've looked for jobs before in other fields and it sucks going through the job search. So I really hope my job searching days are over and I'll be with these guys for a while.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

Wil-Trans:

Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

He's actually correct that the name on the side of the truck isn't nearly as important as you might think. Companies are run pretty much the same way and those that pay a little less tend to give you more miles and thksd that pay more often give you slightly fewer miles. In the end, you simply want to stick with whoever for at least a year and maintain a clean mvr and no prevevtables. After that, yku may choose to stay or move on, but you'll have more options open up after that first year.

Wil-trans is a good company. Best of luck to you.

MVR:

Motor Vehicle Record

An MVR is a report of your driving history, as reported from your state Department of Motor Vehicles. Information on this report may include Drivers License information, point history, violations, convictions, and license status on your driving record.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Wil-Trans:

Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

Remy E.'s Comment
member avatar

I was passed over by them but it's understandable. They were very professional about it and didn't try to feed me any bull before looking at my apps and such. If you get a chance though check out Allie Knight on youtube. She drives for them and makes a great impression for the company.

Jason G.'s Comment
member avatar

I will give a more thorough update later but have been busy studying for permit test. It's kind of what I expected, that a lot of the work is up to us. They didn't go over any of the permit test yesterday. So have to study in my own which is understandable. But since Wil-Trans uses same hotel as Prime I'm seeing what a difference it has made being with a smaller company. It's hard to get lost in the mix when there are only three of us. And two guys I'm with are really cool, both of them have experience with gears and shifting and I don't. So they joked that with them I won't get made fun of if I don't get the hang of it right away. And the instructor reassured my inner concerns about it. Said I will be fine. And I believe I will. By the end of the week I hope to have a good understanding of shifting and operating a truck.

Wil-Trans:

Darrel Wilson bought his first tractor in 1980 at age 20, but, being too young to meet OTR age requirements, he leased the truck out and hired a driver.

Through growth and acquisition, Wil-Trans now employs over 200 drivers, and has a long-standing partnership with Prime, Inc. to haul their refrigerated freight. The family of businesses also includes Jim Palmer Trucking and O & S Trucking.

Jason G.'s Comment
member avatar

So I'm three weeks into my training. Haven't updated here because I've either been too tired or too busy studying to give this attention. But now that im with my trainer and we are early for a live load I have some time to write. It took a few days longer to get me a trainer, but that's been okay because I got a lot of extra time practicing on the backup pad. But this last weekend I headed out with my trainer. He's a cool guy and have found his method of training is great for me. He sortve let's me do my thing in the driver's seat and really only says anything if we're getting into a new situation for me, like merging into the highway near Atlanta or when I've struggled finding gears when downshifting. Since Sunday that's been my biggest struggle but today I finally feel comfortable with it. Have been able to talk that through with my trainer and know what I've been doing wrong and so today has been focused on watching rpms and giving it the right splash of fuel to downshift smoothly. Only had a few instances where had trouble finding gear but was able to find them this time without my trainer reaching over and helping. You can tell he's been a trainer for a while because he is quite good at reaching over from passenger seat and getting it in gear. He says I'm doing good for my experience level and he would tell me otherwise if I wasn't. It's reassuring when he tells me I will get the hang of it. Just takes practice. Training is fast paced so I forget sometimes that they are expecting me to look like an expert right away, but just that I know how to find the gears and assess each situation and go about it safely. Have enjoyed driving. I guess normally they try not to give D seats a lot of night driving at first but that's what we've had quite a bit and it is perfectly fine with me because I actually feel comfortable with it.

So with the extra time I've had on the backup pad and with my time out here with my trainer I am feeling more confident about my driving test each day. Probably won't update much more here until I get to my driving test. Thanks for everyone's advice and support here. Later.

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