CR England National Going "Team Only"

Topic 20350 | Page 1

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Dan R.'s Comment
member avatar

I suppose this is of note, and I did note it in a reply a few minutes ago but figured it kind of deserved it's own thread as it's quite a monumental change.

CR England is transitioning away from solo drivers in the national division. That division will consist almost entirely of trainers, true team(these are teams that pick each other, rather than being forced together), and drivers who have somehow messed up enough to get removed from another division(in mine, three driver failed loads in a year and you get put on national and forced to team).

They're also working, slowly, on adjusting their regional division. The idea, if they haven't abandoned it yet, is to transition from pure regional into a shipping lane set-up. Most will start or end at one of our terminals with the goal of the other end being 'home' if there isn't a terminal near home. I'll note that this doesn't seem to be catching on well as, despite my lane being OR/WA - SLC, I have yet to get a load that fits that description in either direction since the switch and don't know of anyone that has actually transitioned into their lane yet(save perhaps for the I-80 lane folks). So, who knows how that will go.

The change to team for national will drastically affect experienced drivers hired on I believe as the 'old' system was you'd go for refresher and/or orientation, get seated with one of our phase II advanced leads for on the road training, then play around on national OTR for a few months to meet the six month requirement that regional and dedicated divisions have. Now after that roughly two week training process will likely be followed by some forced teaming for a few months, though I have NOT confirmed that.

England does have a history of forced teaming. After school and your ~180 hours with a certified trainer, you'd upgrade to Phase II training which was essentially forced teaming of new drivers, as the first seat you'd be teaming with would typically have maybe a month more experience than you(the program was designed to support lease trucks as they had a HUGE turnover rate on lease contracts, far higher than other similar programs, but that's no longer what it's used for).

This info, save for the part about experienced driver, is information directly from my dispatcher.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Dispatcher:

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.
C T.'s Comment
member avatar

Are their flatbed "pods" guys apart of the national fleet? I always see these things and wonder where they go to and from. Also, forced teaming doesn't sound very pleasant but they've been doing it from what I understand.

Dan R.'s Comment
member avatar

No, PODS is a different animal. I'm not sure if it's considered dedicated or just completely different, but it's not part of national. There are solo folks in PODS as well as teams.

They absolutely have been doing forced teams for quite some time during their Phase II training stage, where you team with usually three or four different people before getting called to move to regional or dedicated. It's potentially worse than with other companies as England is one of the most lenient companies when it comes to hiring as they don't have to worry about what their insurance will allow as they're self insured, so they'll take anyone with a pulse at the school. Obviously they have the same standards for getting through school, but with so many people coming in, more people are going out and that leads to some real problem children getting in. The three folks I teamed with on my truck during Phase II were very hit or miss. First guy crashed the truck the first ten feet he drove(moving forward, bobtail , in a WM DC), second guy just... just didn't get it, though being a demanding little poop to dispatch would get things done faster but of course ended up with frequently sitting and waiting for a load he'd 'demanded' be sent right away. The last guy was great, though. The first seat I rode with had a booze problem. Never drove drunk, I made damn sure of that, but any time he'd take a 34 the first stop was a bar. There's never an excuse for having to clean a drivers booze vomit off the side of your truck.

Bobtail:

"Bobtailing" means you are driving a tractor without a trailer attached.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

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