Swift Or Western Express?

Topic 23589 | Page 2

Page 2 of 3 Previous Page Next Page Go To Page:
G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Swift? Top brass? I interact with basically 7 people; four DLs, 2 Planners and a OPs manager. That’s it...I’ve known them all for years.

The same dynamic holds true for most every company. There are a very relationships that matter in this job. I just gave you the extent of them.

Good luck!!

Patrick C.'s Comment
member avatar

There are a lot of people I interact with, then again I make it my business to interact with them. It makes things easier to develop a relationship with as many people as possible. Mainly I deal with Kim my DM and the 2 night dispatch. Oh, several people in maintenance, the training department. Safety, logs, fuel, and Jamie in recruiting. I guess I have kinda embedded myself in the company. All the better for me, lol.

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.
Mr. Curmudgeon's Comment
member avatar

A big thank you to all of you for taking the time out to reply.. and long replies at that. Yeah, I was one of those spreadsheet guys right after CDL training back in 2015.

Light, I'm not sure, but it sounds like you're debating between going through the driver training again, paid by Western Express in exchange for a year with them, vs. going right into driving with a trainer with Swift? My $.02 worth is that retraining on a stale, non-driven, CDL is a good thing. I was out for just over a year before I got my driving job, and it was difficult to find an outfit that would take me on a stale CDL. Granted, freight volumes were significantly lower then than now, but still it was a struggle. I got a second chance from a small-ish (less than 100 units) carrier, and made it work.

That said, going directly into driving with Swift could work. If you pass your driving test, they will put you with a qualified trainer and get you up to speed swiftly. Even without the contract, however, staying the course with them for a full year, riding the ups and downs with a solid work ethic and a woosh-ha attitude may convince you to stay with them...

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.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Just a quick note on Mr. Crumdgeon...

Swift will definitely road test, evaluate and then make a determination on how best to proceed. It’s possible they will require a refresher course at a Swift Academy company school.

Best case scenario? Light will need to road train with a Mentor for a period not to exceed 200 hours of the student driving.

It’s unlikely they will sight-unseen, upgrade Light to solo status.

Light S.'s Comment
member avatar

Yes, those are my two choices but are you sure about Western? I mean just look at the 1 star reviews on google.. lot of bad equipment and no communication. Maybe Swift would be a better option.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Light, here is what I'm sure about. I already said this once, but for emphasis I'm quoting myself...

Success at trucking is a hard fought battle that starts with a clear understanding of what it takes to make a go of this. It has nothing to do with the company, and everything to do with the individual. Individuals who understand this principle can and will succeed no matter where they start.

Trucking requires a strong work ethic. That holds true at every single trucking company out here. It also requires determination, discipline, and a lot of effort and drive. It's a very competitive field, which I sometimes compare to sports. Trucking is not easy - at least it's not easy to make a good start. Imagine how tough it is on rookie year athletes who get their first shot at the big leagues. Everything about their success depends on how they perform their duties on the field. It doesn't matter if they have the "Patriot's" logo on their helmet, if they can't prove their worth on the field then they're gone. It's that simple, and that's exactly how it works in trucking.

I'm also sure about something else...

Online reviews are worthless. Who is it that posts them? The very people who don't understand my earlier sratement. The losers and the "never do wells" are the last place you want to seek information and advice from. Look, you can go to Swift if the reviews of Western scare you. But it makes no difference. Trucking requires some serious effort and accomplishment from you.

Everybody seals their own fate and determines their own level of success in this career. All these companies can do is give you an opportunity. If you fail and go home, then you can join the millions who produce the one star reviews that disturb other newbies. Unfortunately, many of us with limited opportunities are also plagued with limited understanding of how to succeed at trucking. It's a shame how that hurts our chances in this very rewarding career.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Light I completely 100% agree with Old School...

To emphasize his points, please take the time to read this:

Web of Lies and Misinformation

Your decision needs to be based on the company you believe best aligns with your personal requirements as a driver. As you know I am happy driving for Swift. However, if Western Express had the Walmart contract at DC-7030, it’s likely I’d be just as happy.

Good luck!

Old School's Comment
member avatar

I want to address one specific you mentioned from the reviews. You mentioned "no communication." I heard this complaint a lot when I was at Western. Here's the deal. Rookies don't understand a lot of things about this career, and they like to be able to call their driver manager and talk, or ask questions. The problem with that is the driver manager probably has 55 other rookies under his guidance, or on his board. They are swamped. I'm telling you, they are the ones with the stressful job.

Most new drivers never seem to lay hold of how important it is to communicate effectively. Simply put, that means forget about using the phone and strictly use the Qualcomm. If the manager thinks you guys need to talk, they will call you. You simply can't call in and expect them to chat with you. The first thing that will happen is you'll get put on hold, and you'll wait a long time because your driver manager is purposely prioritizing the Quallcomm messages on his screen. Those are the drivers who are getting results and learning how to keep themselves moving - they are getting help because they know how this communication game is played.

I have personally witnessed this. I've watched those driver managers just flying through dozens of those messages on their screen while they are ignoring the four or five phone lines who have been on hold for fifteen to twenty minutes. Why is that? Because it's efficient. They get more done that way, and the drivers who understand that, get the answers they need much more quickly.

There is a steep learning curve to trucking, and very little of it has anything to do with actually driving the truck. That's what frustrates people and causes them to post worthless reviews. They never could grasp the concepts that would help them succeed.

Qualcomm:

Omnitracs (a.k.a. Qualcomm) is a satellite-based messaging system with built-in GPS capabilities built by Qualcomm. It has a small computer screen and keyboard and is tied into the truck’s computer. It allows trucking companies to track where the driver is at, monitor the truck, and send and receive messages with the driver – similar to email.

Driver Manager:

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.
USMC AAV's Comment
member avatar

Hey light,

I called and asked my brother who works for Western and he told me this. In a typical week while he was a on-site trainer at Western Express, there were approximately 60 people (on average) there from various parts of the U.S., that would come to the weekly orientations He said on average about 5 fail the drug test and a few that couldn't get past the road test, and another ten that just quit before the week was out for one reason or another. After that first week (roughly 40 being left), they went on with a driver trainer for 3-6 weeks (except those select few that came over with experience from other companies). Of those 40 or so people that went with a driver trainer about 10 would quit before there training period was even over. ( these people would quit for various reasons from; they missed being home, missed their kids, or realized this wasn't the life they thought it would be, or they just didn't want to follow directions from their trainer). After that about 30 would actually make it as a solo driver. However most would not make it past 3 months!!

He said that the vast majority didn't take the time to find out what the job would be like. If they had issues they would quit. If they didnt make it home on time, they would quit. If they felt cheated or didnt submit their weekly paperwork on time or it wasnt correct, they would quit. Some complained that they were lied to, so they quit. A few said they didn't ask enough questions so their expectations were false, so they quit. See the trend here??? Of those roughly 60 people that go to a western Express orientation only about 5-9 make it past three months solo. Western Express keeps data on this.

The vast majority of those people, when frustrated, ****ed off, angry and feeling misled that left Western Express are the same people that write those biased reviews that other people read on google and truckers report. The reason why I mention this is like you, I read tons of reviews and after I came here I realized that those reviews were written by people who were upset at that time.

As I found out after I found this site, here things are done differently.

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Light S.'s Comment
member avatar

Most new drivers never seem to lay hold of how important it is to communicate effectively. Simply put, that means forget about using the phone and strictly use the Qualcomm. If the manager thinks you guys need to talk, they will call you. You simply can't call in and expect them to chat with you. The first thing that will happen is you'll get put on hold, and you'll wait a long time because your driver manager is purposely prioritizing the Qualcomm messages on his screen. Those are the drivers who are getting results and learning how to keep themselves moving - they are getting help because they know how this communication game is played.

I didn't realize that. Good point. That makes a lot of sense. I know most of those reviews are upset people who are hurting for work like most of us. So, I get their frustration and especially if they have a family. Being a single guy I shouldn't be worried about what others say and just experience it for myself. I appreciate the detailed replies.

Light I completely 100% agree with Old School...

Your decision needs to be based on the company you believe best aligns with your personal requirements as a driver. As you know I am happy driving for Swift. However, if Western Express had the Walmart contract at DC-7030, it’s likely I’d be just as happy.

Good luck!

Thank you. I will check that out. I should stop looking at those Swift memes! They look like a great company honesty and I like the recent rebranding they did and sure it will look great on the trucks once they update those. I watch a youtuber who works for Swift (Stephen Harz) on youtube and his on the Walmart dedicated and seems to be liking it. Very informative videos and information on Swift.

The vast majority of those people, when frustrated, ****ed off, angry and feeling misled that left Western Express are the same people that write those biased reviews that other people read on google and truckers report. The reason why I mention this is like you, I read tons of reviews and after I came here I realized that those reviews were written by people who were upset at that time.

As I found out after I found this site, here things are done differently.

Thanks to you and your brother for the tips and information. Yeah I figured that was the case majority of the time that it was just frustrated folks. I know I can do this just don't have a lot of money saved so need to make a good, informed decision. I did have some luck today tho. May Trucking has offered to hire me and they are literally a town over from where I live so I might give them a look since Western Express still haven't got back to me on my travel arrangements. Appreciate the help everyone.

Qualcomm:

Omnitracs (a.k.a. Qualcomm) is a satellite-based messaging system with built-in GPS capabilities built by Qualcomm. It has a small computer screen and keyboard and is tied into the truck’s computer. It allows trucking companies to track where the driver is at, monitor the truck, and send and receive messages with the driver – similar to email.

Driver Manager:

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.
Page 2 of 3 Previous Page Next Page Go To Page:

New Reply:

New! Check out our help videos for a better understanding of our forum features

Bold
Italic
Underline
Quote
Photo
Link
Smiley
Links On TruckingTruth


example: TruckingTruth Homepage



example: https://www.truckingtruth.com
Submit
Cancel
Upload New Photo
Please enter a caption of one sentence or less:

Click on any of the buttons below to insert a link to that section of TruckingTruth:

Getting Started In Trucking High Road Training Program Company-Sponsored Training Programs Apply For Company-Sponsored Training Truck Driver's Career Guide Choosing A School Choosing A Company Truck Driving Schools Truck Driving Jobs Apply For Truck Driving Jobs DOT Physical Drug Testing Items To Pack Pre-Hire Letters CDL Practice Tests Trucking Company Reviews Brett's Book Leasing A Truck Pre-Trip Inspection Learn The Logbook Rules Sleep Apnea
Done
Done

0 characters so far - 5,500 maximum allowed.
Submit Preview

Preview:

Submit
Cancel

Join Us!

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

Read More

Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

Learn More