OTR Salary At 5 Year Mark.

Topic 14440 | Page 2

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Alex H.'s Comment
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As to the original question, as others have stated, it is a little difficult to put a good solid number to it. I would say that most drivers are going to be in the 45,000 - 50,000 dollar range. There are always exceptions, and you must keep in mind that the nature of this business is to reward the top producers with the top pay. As far as CPM rates go, they don't tell the whole story when it comes to your actual pay. Generally at the five year mark you will have reached top pay in this industry - it tops out fairly quickly. Where the drivers with initiative and drive come out on top is by being able to outperform their peers by getting things done, like moving their delivery times forward, managing to be the first in and the first out, managing their logs so they are efficiently operating under the rules.

I have hundreds of stories that illustrate how I beat the odds at various shippers and receivers by just working a plan to be ahead of the other guys. It's not that hard to do, but you've got to make some sacrifices and stay on top of your game to keep things moving in the right direction. Here's a small example: I was dispatched 3,650 miles this week - more than anyone else on this account. While I may be making the same CPM rate as some of the other guys I will still make more money because I got more done. Why would my dispatcher load me up so heavily when there are others here who may have only had 2,200 mile for their work week? It is simply a matter of confidence - he knew that I would get it done. He was confident that I could manage my hours so that I would not be stranded somewhere complaining that I didn't have enough hours to make it. I had a tight schedule with multiple stops that all needed to be finished on a Friday, or else I would be sitting all weekend waiting for Monday to get here - he knew that I was not about to let that happen, and that effectively sets me up for being back at our dedicated customer first thing Monday, available for the next set of loads going out. Dispatchers love the guys who "git er done." They will rely on them heavily, and they will hold back on the guys whose track records make them a little nervous. I had to drive all through the night almost every night this week to make all this stuff come out right, but that is what it took to make it happen. That is how you will end up making a decent salary in this business - be the guy who makes things happen.

Wow! That is quite a story. Hopefully I have a good trainer who can teach me tricks like that. Do you train? lol

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

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.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

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

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Old School's Comment
member avatar

Sorry Alex, all the training I do is when I talk to my peers here on this account, and what I can find the time to do here on Trucking Truth. I enjoy teaching others how to succeed at this, but I also enjoy my privacy in my own truck. My wife has tried to convince me to be a trainer, but I'm quite satisfied with trying to help out here in the forum while running my tail off out here in my little world.

Alex H.'s Comment
member avatar

Sorry Alex, all the training I do is when I talk to my peers here on this account, and what I can find the time to do here on Trucking Truth. I enjoy teaching others how to succeed at this, but I also enjoy my privacy in my own truck. My wife has tried to convince me to be a trainer, but I'm quite satisfied with trying to help out here in the forum while running my tail off out here in my little world.

Well can't blame ya for that!

Trucktographer's Comment
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My first full year of driving (8 months at Swift rest of the year at current company SLT) saw my taxes at 47k. For this year I'm on pace to make 60k.

Errol V.'s Comment
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My first full year of driving (8 months at Swift rest of the year at current company SLT) saw my taxes at 47k. For this year I'm on pace to make 60k.

Glad to hear from you all again.

BTW aren't you doing some specialized flatbed work - not a dry van? This is just to clarify the differences.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
Trucktographer's Comment
member avatar

Specialized, yes. Flat-bed, no. Still hailing a 53' dry-van. But our biggest customer is the DoD. We also haul civilian HAZMAT. Our company recently bought another that specializes in DoE work, so we'll be adding that as well.

To people wanting to stay a company driver, but make a bit more money, it's all about finding a niche market. Do something not every driver can, or wants, to do.

In my case not everyone wants to deal with the hassle of maintaining all the permits/endorsements/certifications/clearances I do to do this job.

I currently have:

Tanker HAZMAT TWIC Permis General Explosifs (allows me to take explosives across the border to/from Quebec) Passport DoD Clearance

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

DSTURBD's Comment
member avatar

Sorry Alex, all the training I do is when I talk to my peers here on this account, and what I can find the time to do here on Trucking Truth. I enjoy teaching others how to succeed at this, but I also enjoy my privacy in my own truck. My wife has tried to convince me to be a trainer, but I'm quite satisfied with trying to help out here in the forum while running my tail off out here in my little world.

Sounds very much like how I feel about things. I have been single and by myself for going on ten years now and I like it that way. Other than when I'm at school, teaching, I very rarely am around other people except to go to the store, get a haircut, etc. Definitely do not need another person to interact with on a regular basis. One of the things that I am looking the most forward to after training is having my own truck by myself to just run and earn, run and earn. I want to get it set up with fridge, microwave, TV, (and my Dish satellite account with an RV dome antenna), APU and inverter (if it's not already done) and I will have my own perfect little world to live in and be as happy as a clam in its shell!! Can't wait!! dancing-banana.gifdancing-banana.gifdancing-dog.gifdancing-dog.gifsmile.gif

DSTURBD

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.

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