Seeking Advice For Schneider Orientation

Topic 1298 | Page 1

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deleted's Comment
member avatar

First off, I'd like to thank Brett and the many other bloggers on this site for helping me make the decision to get into trucking. It was a hard one, but after attending and graduating from a private trucking school, I couldn't be happier. To be honest, without this site, I may not have been adequately equipped to do so.

Anyway, after graduating on the 16th of August, I decided to go with Schneider National as my carrier of choice for a multitude of reasons, and my orientation with them is slated for September 3rd in Indianapolis,IN. Thing is, I'm a bit worried that I'm not prepared for what those 18 days have in store for me. I've read that it's very easy to get booted from orientation for drinking, attitude, etc, which won't be issues for me, but I've also read that if you're shifting isn't up to snuff, that'll get you sent home as well.

The latter is a big concern for me because even though I managed to pass the state exam, my shifting was admittedly on the rough side and I don't have access to a truck to practice anymore until I arrive at orientation. I'm very worried that due to have no truck driving(even manual shifting) experience outside of my 15 days in trucking school that I'm going to get sent home and miss out on my opportunity to get my life going.

Are my concerns justified?

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Roadkill (aka:Guy DeCou)'s Comment
member avatar

Welcome to the forum..uh...A...rofl-2.gif I think you may be stressing yourself out for nothing...CDL School is just that..a school to get your CDL..its NOT a driving school..they only teach you enough to be dangerous..I mean..get your license..When you get to orientation, that's when the REAL education begins...and yes, being a jerk, drinking and what not WILL get you booted...but as long as your showing your instructors that you are improving or working hard at improving, then you should be fine...they should send you out with a trainer..pay attention to him..ask him questions..watch how he does things..it's a steep learning curve, but you can do this..

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.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

deleted's Comment
member avatar

Thanks, Roadkill. Not sure why I abbreviated "Art" when I made this profile, but thats fixed.

I've got a really good attitude about all this and I'm willing to put in the work to succeed. Hell, I really only drove a truck 8 days before taking my state exam and I'm amazed I was able to pass it. I may just be letting my nerves get the better of me. Sitting around waiting to start work seems to have that effect.

Roadkill (aka:Guy DeCou)'s Comment
member avatar

Dont sweat it. Keep on reading and studying the links on here and i guarantee you will start to feel better about heading into orientation.

ThinksTooMuch's Comment
member avatar

I have been driving for Schneider Bulk for about 2 months now. Our training is different than Van division but it can't be that different. I cannot imagine you getting booted for shifting. You're shifting will improve DRAMATICALLY during Schneider's training. The instructors are absolutely awesome, least our Bulk guys are lol. Don't get discouraged if you make mistakes, just make sure you ask what you did wrong, or what you can do to improve.

There is another guy on the forum who just went through Schneider's Van training, maybe he will pop in for some insight. Feel free to PM me if you want to chat or have any questions.

deleted's Comment
member avatar

Wait, I have a choice other than van when I'm first starting?

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Welcome aboard Art!

Listen, even if you did get booted from Schneider it means nothing in the end. In fact, if you haven't already, I would apply to a bunch of companies and see how many pre-hires you can get. If Schneider says they're putting you on a bus home, you call the next company on the pre-hire list and tell em to send you a bus ticket. Simple as that.

Schneider is certainly not your one and only opportunity. Not by a longshot. So don't sweat it. If it works out with them - great! If it doesn't - fine! Someone is going to get a great new driver with a great attitude and they'll be lucky to have you. Just keep your chin up, be confident, take everything with a smile, and know that in the end things will work out great. There's no way to know right now where you'll end up or what road you'll take to get there, but it doesn't matter. As long as you keep marching forward, keep believing in yourself, and keep a great attitude you'll do fantastic in this career.

We have a way you can Apply For Many Truck Driving Jobs With One Application. Fill it out, pick a bunch of companies, and send it off. Your application will get sent to the companies you qualify for. And make sure you call them back yourself within a couple of days. A lot of companies let applications sit on a pile collecting dust. Be proactive and you'll get much better results.

Pre-hire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Pre-hires:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

ThinksTooMuch's Comment
member avatar

Everything Brett said is correct. Companies are hiring, ALL of them, ALL the time... lol. When I was doing my applications in CDL school everyone told me that Quality Carriers (tanker company) does not hire out of CDL school. I think even their website said so. I decided to try anyway. Put an application in and called the local terminal. The terminal manager told me that they DO hire out of CDL school but only when terminal managers deem it necessary in that market. So there you go, try everything.

I replied to you PM about tankers. Yes you can start in tankers, Van is not your only option. You can start in Reefer or Flatbed as well. I think the only thing you cannot start in is Heavy Haul, but who knows there may be an exception to that too!

Like I said, I would call your recruiter ASAP because your Van orientation is soon and it is Labor Day weekend, and just tell him or her that you are very interested in tanker.

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.

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.

SAP:

Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

deleted's Comment
member avatar

I just was in touch with my recruiter and he'd really rather I waited 3 to 6 months to transfer over to tanker, seeing as its a different division and its harder to learn, though I wonder if he just doesn't want to lose me to another recruiter.

Regardless, I intend to transfer out of OTR van as soon as I'm sure of myself and as soon as they'll let me.

As far as what companies I've applied to, there aren't many I haven't. Thing is my trucking school lead me astray on how I would go about including under the table jobs on my application, so all of that time was filled in as unemployment and most of the major carriers have denied me. The only reason Schneider hadn't was due to the fact I filled it out after employing some common sense. I'm sure there are more carriers out there who wouldn't mind my work history, but I've been somewhat dead-set on Schneider due to their training programs and locations in the Pacific Northwest, where I intend to wind up.

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.

ThinksTooMuch's Comment
member avatar

Call recruiting again I would say. Tell them you WANT to do tankers. You haven't went to Van orientation yet so I cannot imagine there should be an issue. Just some shuffling of paperwork. I will email you the contact info for the recruiter I spoke with. SUPER SUPER helpful lady. Maybe she can help you out.

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