Staffing Agency CDL Jobs?

Topic 14762 | Page 1

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Allison M.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm going to (hopefully) be working with a staffing agency until September or October when I get my CDL. Right now I'm going to be getting a non-CDL job but the agency also has trucking jobs. I'm going to interview with them in the next week or so and I'll be asking how that works specifically with this agency, but does anyone know in general how a regular run of the mill temp agency goes about CDL jobs? Would they be construction and such, or??? And how would they work with insurance and all that fun legal stuff? Would it be worth it for me to stay with that agency as a new CDL holder, or would it be better to stick with a single local company to start out with (I will be 18 therefore intrastate only, and I have given it 2 years of thought, and I am most definitely getting it)? I realize there are a lot of things that can only be answered by the agency I'm working with, but any insight would be much appreciated smile.gif

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.

Intrastate:

The act of purchasers and sellers transacting business while keeping all transactions in a single state, without crossing state lines to do so.

Ronny S.'s Comment
member avatar

Hey there! My father actually got a job through a staffing agency that required his CDL. It was with the company Conagra foods. He was paid weekly and it was a 12 hour shift job. He enjoyed it (it was local, but a little too far out for a daily drive so he ended up finding something closer). As for him, he had over 10 years under his belt when he got this job. Now for your age/experience, I'm not if they'd consider taking a look at you, but anything is worth a shot. Best of luck to you, maybe someone else more informed here has a better answer for you.

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.
Stickers's Comment
member avatar

I'm going to (hopefully) be working with a staffing agency until September or October when I get my CDL. Right now I'm going to be getting a non-CDL job but the agency also has trucking jobs. I'm going to interview with them in the next week or so and I'll be asking how that works specifically with this agency, but does anyone know in general how a regular run of the mill temp agency goes about CDL jobs? Would they be construction and such, or??? And how would they work with insurance and all that fun legal stuff? Would it be worth it for me to stay with that agency as a new CDL holder, or would it be better to stick with a single local company to start out with (I will be 18 therefore intrastate only, and I have given it 2 years of thought, and I am most definitely getting it)? I realize there are a lot of things that can only be answered by the agency I'm working with, but any insight would be much appreciated smile.gif

I have been a welder for about 9 years and I have worked with MANY tamp agencies in the past decade on and off. I am also about to obtain my CDL with the intent if going over the road however.

Considering your age and what background you may or may not have I think you should consider some things before you decide to PAY to get your CDL if that is how you are going to get one weather it be through a truck driving school using student loans or paying out of pocket.

The biggest thing is even if you are working for a temp agency you must still meet the insurance requirements of the employer you will be working for as a temp. Most places have a minimum age of 21 yrs old to operate their equipment due to insurance guidelines. Also, Only being able to operate within your home state due to your age may or may not make it a little harder to get a contract with a place that does primarily trucking.

NOW...on the flipside to all of that. I have worked for a few small construction companies and repair shops as a maintenance tech and I can tell you that they would have LOVED IT if I had my CDL then. It would have allowed them to let me use their flatbed tractor trailers to go retrieve broken equipment in the field or move and test drive customer trucks when I was working in a repair shop. My driving record has had some bad history on it a few years back so it never made sense for me to have to pay for CDL when I would only use it on rare occasions but for someone a lot younger getting a CDL now can be a very handy accolade to have on your resume especially if you plan on getting into the construction industry or any other industry that uses heavy trucks regularly.

I know just about every temp agency in my area has a CDL class A or Class B position open for driving delivery trucks or it is a requirement of the employer for some other type of position (construction equipment operator is a good example of that). Temp agencies are a good place to gain experience in a craft that a young person like yourself is otherwise inexperienced. I got my first welding gig with temp agency back when I was 18 because no shop would take me.

I would say if you want to drive I would try to avoid the temp agencies all together if possible. I am sorry for rant but I really do hate them. They are merely an excuse for potential employers to "test drive" you without having to commit to paying you a livable wage and decent benefits. And all to often when a temp agency advertises a job that is "temp to hire" it is actually " we need extra manpower for 90 days" and they can end your contract and hire up the next batch of people they don't need to commit to but still turn out product for the busy season.

A lot of guys a I deployed with got their CDL through the Army as they were Army truck drivers and the DOT lets them use their Military experience to test out. Some of them were able to get jobs driving concrete mixers and roll off dumpster trucks back home since they were not 21 yet. Perhaps you could give places like that a look if you plan getting your CDL and finding a driving job at 18?

P.S. We are coming up to harvest season in a few months. I always see ads on Craigslist for farmers looking for CDL holders who want to drive their trucks from the field to the co-op in fall. Might be an opportunity for someone under 21 there to get some resume worthy experience.

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.

Over The Road:

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.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

Intrastate:

The act of purchasers and sellers transacting business while keeping all transactions in a single state, without crossing state lines to do so.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Allison, I admire your grit! To be honest with you it is just plain tough to get a driving job when you are 18 years old - of course, I'm not telling you anything you haven't already figured out.

The temp agency would be a good place to start, but you also need to be scouring Craig's list. The above suggestion about agricultural/farm jobs is also a good one. Probably most of what you can get will be temporary jobs, I wish you the best in your search.

One thing you want to keep in mind is that no matter how many years you drive these local or temporary jobs, later on if you decide to go Over the Road no one is going to consider that you have any experience! It sounds crazy, but that is the way it is right now. You will be starting all over with training if you decide to transition into an Over the Road job when you are of age.

Over The Road:

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.

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.
Stickers's Comment
member avatar

Allison, I admire your grit! To be honest with you it is just plain tough to get a driving job when you are 18 years old - of course, I'm not telling you anything you haven't already figured out.

The temp agency would be a good place to start, but you also need to be scouring Craig's list. The above suggestion about agricultural/farm jobs is also a good one. Probably most of what you can get will be temporary jobs, I wish you the best in your search.

One thing you want to keep in mind is that no matter how many years you drive these local or temporary jobs, later on if you decide to go Over the Road no one is going to consider that you have any experience! It sounds crazy, but that is the way it is right now. You will be starting all over with training if you decide to transition into an Over the Road job when you are of age.

I don't mean to thread jack Allison but I am curious as to why coming from local to OTR is seen as "no experience"? I know local outfits look at miles driven rather than how long when taking in former OTR folks. Does that not work the other way around?

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.

Over The Road:

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.

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.
Old School's Comment
member avatar
I am curious as to why coming from local to OTR is seen as "no experience"? I know local outfits look at miles driven rather than how long when taking in former OTR folks. Does that not work the other way around?

Stickers, this is why you will see a common theme in our comments about going OTR first, and then sticking with that job for a good solid year to get some sort of a foundation laid for your career - it is of utmost importance. Have successful trucking careers been launched other ways? Well, I'm sure that some have, but the odds are against it in most cases. The insurance carriers, who are ultimately the ones who determine which drivers the trucking companies are allowed to hire, have determined that OTR driving should be the gold standard for going through the paces and learning how to handle this job in a safe manner.

It may sound crazy to you, and that's totally understandable, but when you're wanting access to someone else's house it is always best to at least start off by understanding and abiding by their house rules.

Another issue with trying to go local first is that most local jobs require one or two years of experience - it's like a catch 22. Young Allison here has got a double whammy working against her - there is the issue of her age, and then also the lack of experience which very few will allow her to gain at her age. We've seen this so many times in here, and it is usually best for a person of such a young age to just wait until they are a few years older. So many of the OTR companies have a minimum age requirement, and then on top of that there are laws that prohibit a person of Allison's age to drive commercial vehicles in an interstate commerce situation, that it just makes it very difficult for a young person like her to find employment in this field.

If Allison does obtain her CDL in September or October and then can't find employment she will discover once that she is of an age to be able to get hired that she will be up against another brick wall, and that is because she has been out of a truck for too long. Her training will be considered as null and void at that time and she will be required to go through another training program as a "refresher."

We are not trying to discourage Allison, but the truth is that it is just very tough to get started in this career at her age. We usually advise these young people like this to get a job in a distribution center or a shipping and receiving department somewhere so that they can be around trucking and trucks, and continue learning about the industry. This way they can keep learning about the industry and keeping their dream alive.

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.

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.

Interstate Commerce:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

Interstate:

Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Hey Stickers...I completely agree with OS. Based upon what I have read in your posts, I believe OTR is your initial preference, specifically flatbed. Fairly easy to land a local job once you have a year of OTR experience. That said, I don't know if anyone has forwarded the 3 Trinity links of TT. These are applicable to folks seriously considering this as a career:

I strongly believe the first two links help establish a base of knowledge necessary for setting reasonable expectations going forward. The High Road training program is a computer based program that is highly recommended for enabling a passing grade on the CDL Permit exams. Keep asking the questions,...that's what we are here for.

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.

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.

Stickers's Comment
member avatar

The insurance carriers, who are ultimately the ones who determine which drivers the trucking companies are allowed to hire, have determined that OTR driving should be the gold standard for going through the paces and learning how to handle this job in a safe manner.

II kind of figured as much, perhaps the insurance companies see it that you get more miles in a year being OTR than local?

Just a couple weeks ago I interviewed for a part time mechanic position at a small trucking company (10 trucks tops) while I am attending CDL school and the OWNER told me the school would be a waste of time because HE learned how to drive by just jumping in a truck and having someone tell him how to drive it...... That must have been back in the golden years.

I think he would have a pretty rude awakening if his business went belly up and had to go drive a truck for someone else tomorrow. Then again, I think is goal was to talk me out of driving so he could gain a mechanic full time....sorry dude, been there, done that :)

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.

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.

Stickers's Comment
member avatar

Hey Stickers...I completely agree with OS. Based upon what I have read in your posts, I believe OTR is your initial preference, specifically flatbed. Fairly easy to land a local job once you have a year of OTR experience. That said, I don't know if anyone has forwarded the 3 Trinity links of TT. These are applicable to folks seriously considering this as a career:

I strongly believe the first two links help establish a base of knowledge necessary for setting reasonable expectations going forward. The High Road training program is a computer based program that is highly recommended for enabling a passing grade on the CDL Permit exams. Keep asking the questions,...that's what we are here for.

OH I AM ABSOLUTELY GOING OTR!!!

I was already aware (not trying to be a know it all) that local outfits much rather take folks coming off of OTR rather than anything else. I was just wondering why an OTR company would look at you as having little to no experience if you had been driving for a a local place 9-5 everyday?

I am single, I have no kids, I like to travel, and I like to drive....Pretty sure there is OTR job with my name on it. I am going to get some OTR experience in for at least a year or two and try to save up for a down payment on a house since I have no rent to speak of. Just a Harley Payment :)

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.

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.

Old School's Comment
member avatar
I kind of figured as much, perhaps the insurance companies see it that you get more miles in a year being OTR than local?

I don't think it is so much the amount of miles as it is that in an Over The Road job you are exposed to so many different scenarios of maneuvering a Big Rig. And not only that, but you are exposed to these scenarios on a gradual basis - it gives you a chance to lean and build your confidence without overwhelming you completely.

We have unfortunately had a few drivers in here who had a lot of heart and jumped into this career by going local first. Their family situation demanded that they be home with their children or something else similar to that scenario. Occasionally, depending on their location one can find a local job with no experience. Time and time again we've seen them really struggle with keeping their jobs due to minor accidents. The local jobs just require a great deal of concentration on backing into tight spots with difficult maneuvering of the rig, and or constantly driving in heavy traffic most of the day. These are the kind of scenarios that put you, as a new driver, at a greater risk of making contact with another vehicle or object.

Once you've got a few accidents on your record then it starts getting a little sketchy when you are trying to find new employment opportunities.

Thus the advantages of going OTR first and taking your time to be safe and productive for that first year. It is just the most prudent approach to success in this arena. Again, it can be done other ways, and it has, but the approach we try to coach people into taking is by far the most successful and provides the easiest access to employment.

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.

Over The Road:

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.

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