Local Food Service As A Rookie

Topic 20873 | Page 2

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Susan D. 's Comment
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Rob, I really appreciate you taking the time to detail your adventures. This will be very helpful for those considering food service. Best wishes to you and stay safe. Looking forward to hearing more as you have time. I know you are busy busy busy.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Rob's Comment
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Today was my first day out on my own. I was scheduled to be with someone today but due to somebody else needing the day off I had to run his route. I got sent out to Ottumwa Iowa. Because I had so much drive time today I only had 9 stops, 9k in the box, 343 cases. There's more work to do compared to when I'm running with someone but man I love it! Pretty laid back day, shifting was good. PFG wants us to stay on schedule but don't start calling unless we're 2 hours behind. Today I put in about 12 hours but I had to sit around for about an hour waiting on customers to show up. Due to the holiday I'm only working Monday, Wednesday, Friday. Nice having time off, but man I need the money.

Rob's Comment
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Also put on 230 miles....quite a bit more than when I'm stuck "in town" for the day and only put About 100 on.

G-Town's Comment
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Congratulations Rob! Great job, best wishes for continued success.

Danielle's Comment
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Great Diary Rob! boy it feels good to see you out there doing what you want to do and enjoying it. That has to be sweet being home every night, working 4 days, and still making good money while driving. I'm super proud of you and look forward to hearing more about your journey.

Rob's Comment
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Great Diary Rob! boy it feels good to see you out there doing what you want to do and enjoying it. That has to be sweet being home every night, working 4 days, and still making good money while driving. I'm super proud of you and look forward to hearing more about your journey.

it definitely is nice being on a 4 day work week but id rather work 5 days to rack in that OT. my wife stays home with our 2 young boys so got alot of debt I gotta pay off. the extra time off definitely helps the body recover.

Rob's Comment
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Well today I ended up having to work. I was supposed to be off but received a text about 6pm asking me to cover for somebody again. Much more difficult day. Spent most of my day in west des Moines and urbandale then went to do 3 stops near downtown. 17 stops, 15k in the box 574 cases. Put in 12.5 hours. Time to get some rest and be back at it again tomorrow. Start time is 3am!!

Rob's Comment
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Today I got sent on my usual route that sends me to Osceola Iowa. Its a pretty easy day. They decided to have somebody come with me since he's on light duty definitely made the day go alot quicker with someone to talk to and do half the work. We ended up sitting and waiting for hour and a half at our 3rd stop (6am) and then another hour and a half in Adair at 6th stop (11am). Alot of back roads with nothing but empty corn fields. 8 stops, 474 cases, 199 miles, only 9,000 pounds and put in 12 hours. I DO NOT WANT TO MISLEAD YOU OF HOW FAST PACE IT IS, Sysco happens to control most of the business in my market so sometimes we sit and wait here depending on the day and customers. Tomorrow (thanksgiving) we're all off but I have a 6am start Friday. Have a good thanksgiving everyone!

Rob's Comment
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Today (Friday) was quite interesting. I'm not used to starting at 6am, usually its 3-4am. Surprisingly I didn't really notice any more traffic than normal with it being "black Friday". I got sent alone on the only route we have that I have not run. I unfortunately had to rely on GPS for a few stops and that caused me a few problems so I had to pull over and look at google maps. My 4th stop this morning sent me to a strip mall I've delivered to a couple times so I figure I was golden. NOPE! I pulled through the back only to find out that they had to redo a section of concrete in driveway. I ended up having to back out the way I came while dodging parked cars as the road curved. Thankfully I pulled that off no problem. I just took it nice and easy and G.O.A.L'd a couple times. Took me longer to get out of that pickle, BUT I DID IT SAFELY AND DID NOT HIT ANYTHING. The day overall wasn't too bad, quite a bit of drive time as I had to go up to Ames, then 45 minutes or so east to Marshalltown. In Ames I had backed into the parking lot of this business because they were crazy busy and there was no where for me to turn around in there....or so I thought. After I got backed in from the street I noticed that had I pulled in exactly where I backed into i could've gotten out over there....oh well, I know for next time. Hardest part of today was needing to figure out how was going to deliver to these places that I'd never been to really quickly so I didn't get into a bad situation, or block traffic too long. I ran about an hour behind today, eventually ill be able to run on time, but I still feel it was successful. To me, success in this industry is getting your trailer empty Safely, without hitting anything. The biggest obstacle I've faced with this is finding where I'm going. I have only lived in des Moines about 6 months and prior to getting this job I never really ventured out exploring all the areas of the metro. I'm getting comfortable with where things are. And how to get there but some day ill have no doubt what the quickest way is. I had 397 cases, 10k in the box, 220 miles, about 12 hours.

This week I logged 48 hours, if you add in my holiday pay I should gross around 1400 for the week.

This concludes my diary for now, ill be glad to document more of my journey later. Feel free to ask any questions here.

Rob's Comment
member avatar

Just thought of something I'd like to add. Most people when they think of food service is that they'll be home every day. That is often times the case but its not guaranteed. Routes are bid on seniority, so when get what the other guys didn't want, which could include layovers. Out of the main terminal (Rock Island Illinois) they send drivers with a load to Kansas City, Green Bay Wisconsin, as well as Minneapolis. Drivers that report to the distribution center for work daily are also required to fill in at the domicile yards (like I work at) if we are short drivers. The guys that get sent here to fill in usually don't know until that morning they're being sent somewhere, and are typically running 2-3 hours behind schedule by the time they get here, then have upset customers because they had a late start, and also run even later because they don't know the area. PFG pays us 87 CPM (47 for pay, 40 for wear/tear on vehicle) any time we are asked to go somewhere work related in our personal vehicle and will pay $50 for meal allowance for every night you spend in a hotel, which they also pay for. Just wanted to throw this out there so anybody considering food service so they can be home at night is aware that layovers, or nights away from home are still a possibility.

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.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

Drivers are often paid by the mile and it's given in cents per mile, or cpm.

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