Looking For Opinion Based Advice On Where To Start My Career

Topic 20458 | Page 1

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Matthew K.'s Comment
member avatar

I've talked to recruiters, I've read what a lot of the companies SAY they do, but I still want to get some information directly from people who started their careers with these companies, namely Swift, Schneider, and US Express, but any company works.

I have standing offers from Schneider (conditional) and US Express (invitation to orientation) and I'm debating where to go. I got my CDL officially on Monday, and I specifically want to go d a company that has a respectable length of training time.

Does anyone have personal experience to share from starting your life as a truck driver with one of these companies?

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.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Matthew, let me ask you something. What do you mean by "a respectable length of training?" Why do you say that? At TruckingTruth we always give a nice list of ways to compare companies to each other so you can pick the one that's right for you, but we never recommend looking at the length of the training to determine where you should work. I think your answer to this question is important because I want to know your approach and your mindset right now.

And by the way, Schneider has one of the shortest training periods of any of the major companies. When I started driving I graduated from a private school and only went out with a trainer for two weeks before going solo and I was fine with that.

So I'm curious about your take.

Besides that, I don't think anyone's personal experience should matter when it comes to you choosing the right company for yourself. You can do great with any of the major companies. That goal should be to pick the company that you feel suits your goals and lifestyle. Look for:

  • Pay & Benefits
  • Home time opportunities available
  • Types of freight they haul
  • Type of equipment they have
  • Areas of the country they run
  • Opportunities they may have available down the road

It sounds to me like you've been surfing around the Net and reading some scary stories. Now you want reassurance from someone who's recently started with a company so you won't choose a bad company. Is that the concern?

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.

Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Matthew, here is the TT company guide:

Keep Brett's advice in mind. "Training time", APU availability, or pet policy do not make your career. You need to understand the whole ball of wax.

As for the training time, consider this: training is not making the company (any company) or you any money. Reading around on this forum, and from my personal experience (Swift), I'll tell you that your training will just get you past the next hurdle. That probably happened for your CDL school - you think you're now ready to hit the road and burn those $miles$? Not a chance.

Even after your road training (your first step after orientation) you will realize you don't know all that much and want to complain, "School didn't teach me enough!!"

I wrote this to answer your concern about "respectable length of training time". No, it won't be respectable in your terms. Your training time will get you ready for the next step, and then you'll learn some more.

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.

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.

APU:

Auxiliary Power Unit

On tractor trailers, and APU is a small diesel engine that powers a heat and air conditioning unit while charging the truck's main batteries at the same time. This allows the driver to remain comfortable in the cab and have access to electric power without running the main truck engine.

Having an APU helps save money in fuel costs and saves wear and tear on the main engine, though they tend to be expensive to install and maintain. Therefore only a very small percentage of the trucks on the road today come equipped with an APU.

6 string rhythm's Comment
member avatar

Last I checked Shaffer / Crete has 6-8 weeks training. Also pay well for the truckload sector - better than Prime and without having to take a "lightweight" truck.

Big Scott's Comment
member avatar

At CFI, once you have your CDL , through their training or someone elses, and go through orientation, you're out with a trainer for at least 7500 miles. That's about 3 to 3 1/2 weeks. Could be a little more. During training you're dispatched as a solo truck, you do all the driving. You are paid $0.26 per mile. There's additional pay for North East driving, stop and detention pay. With that said, it's most important to pick a company that fits your needs. Things like pay, home time, equipment, benefits, type of frieght, areas of the country they run. Good luck.

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.
Matthew K.'s Comment
member avatar

Matthew, let me ask you something. What do you mean by "a respectable length of training?" Why do you say that? At TruckingTruth we always give a nice list of ways to compare companies to each other so you can pick the one that's right for you, but we never recommend looking at the length of the training to determine where you should work. I think your answer to this question is important because I want to know your approach and your mindset right now.

And by the way, Schneider has one of the shortest training periods of any of the major companies. When I started driving I graduated from a private school and only went out with a trainer for two weeks before going solo and I was fine with that.

So I'm curious about your take.

Besides that, I don't think anyone's personal experience should matter when it comes to you choosing the right company for yourself. You can do great with any of the major companies. That goal should be to pick the company that you feel suits your goals and lifestyle. Look for:

  • Pay & Benefits
  • Home time opportunities available
  • Types of freight they haul
  • Type of equipment they have
  • Areas of the country they run
  • Opportunities they may have available down the road

It sounds to me like you've been surfing around the Net and reading some scary stories. Now you want reassurance from someone who's recently started with a company so you won't choose a bad company. Is that the concern?

I looked at all of this, and wound up going with Schneider. Even with the short training, their equipment, area of operations, and freight are the way I wanted to go. Ive also -lightly- checked up on the benefits and they don't seem bad.

I should be able to kick myself into high gear during that short training span, and in a few years here I'll be hauling 40 tons like a pro.

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.

Matthew K.'s Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

Matthew, let me ask you something. What do you mean by "a respectable length of training?" Why do you say that? At TruckingTruth we always give a nice list of ways to compare companies to each other so you can pick the one that's right for you, but we never recommend looking at the length of the training to determine where you should work. I think your answer to this question is important because I want to know your approach and your mindset right now.

And by the way, Schneider has one of the shortest training periods of any of the major companies. When I started driving I graduated from a private school and only went out with a trainer for two weeks before going solo and I was fine with that.

So I'm curious about your take.

Besides that, I don't think anyone's personal experience should matter when it comes to you choosing the right company for yourself. You can do great with any of the major companies. That goal should be to pick the company that you feel suits your goals and lifestyle. Look for:

  • Pay & Benefits
  • Home time opportunities available
  • Types of freight they haul
  • Type of equipment they have
  • Areas of the country they run
  • Opportunities they may have available down the road

It sounds to me like you've been surfing around the Net and reading some scary stories. Now you want reassurance from someone who's recently started with a company so you won't choose a bad company. Is that the concern?

double-quotes-end.png

I looked at all of this, and wound up going with Schneider. Even with the short training, their equipment, area of operations, and freight are the way I wanted to go. Ive also -lightly- checked up on the benefits and they don't seem bad.

I should be able to kick myself into high gear during that short training span, and in a few years here I'll be hauling 40 tons like a pro.

Forgot to mention: Orientation is in Charlotte on Tuesday :)

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.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Good luck. If have the time, try to write a diary of your training in the diaries section.

Safe travels!

Patrick C.'s Comment
member avatar

Good Luck. I wish you well on your journey.

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