Knight Or Steven's

Topic 29234 | Page 1

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Michael V.'s Comment
member avatar

Good evening ,

Im torn on which company to select. I understand the training differences but who is better to work for? and why? Stevens is saying it up 60k the first year. Im not too concerned about home time as long as its about 1x a month, the wife is going to ride with me after the probation period. Anyways any help would be great. I searched the forum and only found something from 6 years ago.

PJ's Comment
member avatar

Welcome to the forum. There are several differences between the two. I had a personal experience with Stevens a year ago, my gf drive for them and was not a pleasant experience. However that is no reason for you too not try them if you think it is right for you. Here are some of the differences.

Knight and Swift merged a couple years ago. That makes them probably the largest trucking organization in the country. They still operate under their own individual banners. That size gives them tremendous advantages in many ways. They have dry van , refeer and flatbed divisions. Training is done in house I do believe. This helps with no suprises in the administration of the program and is well established.

Stevens has only one division, reefer. They had a tank division, but shut it down last year. Training can be in house, or through a private contract school they use. Everything is run out of Dallas. They also push leasing very hard from the very beginning.

Good luck with your decision.

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.

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.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

I agree with PJ’s reasons. I looked into both when I was starting out and Knight struck me as a more professional company, though that’s just an opinion and worth what you’re paying for it.

I went with Schneider because of the greater opportunities over other companies (Knight hadn’t yet merged with Swift at that time).

The real question for you is which will meet your long-term goals? Starting pay is only one part of the equation.

I hope this helps.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Michael, I can't really weigh in on which one would be best for you, but I want to point something out for you and hopefully others will see it and learn from it. I just think you have to be very careful when you see something on a trucking company's website, or perhaps hear it from a recruiter, regarding a total amount of money you will make during your rookie year. That number is usually not reliable. It's put out there as a lure, It's not a promise.

It's worded carefully so it's not false advertising. Truck drivers don't have salaries. Some of them make really good money, some of them don't. Their pay is a reflection of how well they manage the challenges of this career. Rookies seldom earn 60,000 dollars. Occasionally you will find one who does, but I'd say a rookie driver can expect something more like forty to fifty thousand in today's market. That would be true at Knight or Stevens. When they say you can earn up to 60,000 dollars that means the potential is there, but you can trust me that few people jumping into this career develop that kind of potential right out of the gate. There is a steep learning curve to this, and most of us struggle at the beginning of it all.

I recently had a discussion with my dispatcher where he indicated that I was the highest paid driver in Knight's specialized flatbed division. I questioned that because I knew there were other drivers who had been on this account longer than I. He simply said, "Their years of service doesn't mean anything in terms of how much they are being paid. In fact you are correct in that there are a couple of guys who make a slightly higher CPM rate than you. But, in terms of productivity, there is nobody even coming close to your record." I'm sharing that conversation with you to point out what produces income for a truck driver. Our pay is performance based. Productivity is really the measuring rod that puts money in your pocket at trucking.

Don't get yourself all tangled up about which company is the best so that you can make the most money. You will never earn top dollar as a trucker if that is how you pursue it. Teach yourself to be productive. Learn the secrets of the Top Tier Drivers. Prove your worth and show that You Have What It Takes To Be A Successful Driver.

This is a great career for the motivated individuals who make it so. Don't be so concerned with the name on the truck. Make it your mission to be the most productive driver out there on the road. That's where all the satisfaction with this career comes from. Neither Knight of Stevens can make you productive. They will both provide you with the chance to make it out here. They will give you the keys to a truck, but you will give yourself the keys to success at this. Remember this maxim... Mediocrity Reaps No Rewards.

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.

Michael V.'s Comment
member avatar

Thank you guys for the replies! Very helpful.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Hey Michael, I was thinking tonight about your struggle with this decision. The other day when I responded I was trying to remember an article we have on this subject, and it was escaping my memory. I remembered it tonight and wanted to encourage you to read it. Brett put it together and it's chock full of great information and advice. Take a look and figure out How To Cut Through The Negativity And Choose The Right Trucking Company To Start Your Career.

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.

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