Flatbed Trucking Jobs

Topic 29717 | Page 1

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Nick L.'s Comment
member avatar

I don't know if this is the place to post this but I'm going to give it a shot. I have been flatbedding and driving with my CDL for 2 years now and I am currently looking for a well-paying flatbed job, I have a clean driving record and I have only had two jobs in this industry. Maybe I expected a lot more coming into this industry but I am currently making 55 to 60,000 a year and was hoping to make an upwards of $75,000 Plus.. I have a stay-at-home wife with two children and it's hard to put food in their mouths while saving enough money to buy us a house off of this little.

I would love to find a job with minimum pay because that normally seems to be the issue with miles which I am only at 48 cents a mile which I heard in flat bedding you should never take less than 0.50 CPM.

I would need a job that has insurance and the option to get home about every two weeks I live in North Carolina and also have a drug-related felony that is 5 years old.

If anyone has any leads or information about good companies out there please let me know I do appreciate it in advance!

Keep on Truckin'!

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.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

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

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Nick, welcome to our forum!

Most truckers who want to make more money think the solution is to find a different company to work for. They seem to think that is their only recourse. Over the last two or three years I have increased my pay by about ten grand per year just by setting goals and being more productive. This whole business is performance based. Do you think you have room to improve your performance? Can you be more productive? Don't take the attitude that most truckers take and claim your employer won't give you enough miles. That is how they make money. They want you to be as productive as you can be. They want to see you prove to them how much you can handle out here. If you can manage your truck and your time so that you can run 3,200 miles per week, they will work hard at keeping you that busy. I'm confident there are drivers at your company earning 75 grand while working at the same pay rate you are.

How many hours are you working each week? Are you bumping up against your 70? If so, how many miles are you averaging per week?

I'd bet a hundred dollars you can be more efficient and get more accomplished right where you are.

You are only two years into this. You should still be learning a lot of things. There are so many tricks to this business to increase your productivity. How well do you understand the log book rules? How efficient are you at securing and tarping loads?

Answer some of those questions and maybe some of our contributors can give you some good advice. I think you can improve your income while staying right where you are. In fact I think it is the best way for you to solve this issue. Once you switch companies you start right back at the bottom. You will have to learn their system and way of doing things. You will have to get accustomed to new freight lanes and customers. You will need to prove yourself all over with a new driver manager who doesn't trust you yet. There are always a lot of obstacles that get thrown up in your way when you switch to a new trucking job. I think your best bet is try to improve your results where you are.

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.
Nick L.'s Comment
member avatar

Hey thank you old school, for the quick and detailed response.

I really do wish that it had something to do with my productivity level or something I could do to increase my pay, trust me I have tried.

At my company I have received top HOS efficiency, two quarters in a row. I run recaps mostly 8.75 hrs average a day out of an 8 day 70 (when I get a good week). When I don't run recaps I do as close to my 11 hrs of driving a day. I generally try to start my day at 3 am and finish by 2/3 pm if I'm just driving (not getting loaded / unloaded).

I've never turned down a load, NYC or anywhere NE (I personally don't mind the NE). Some of the guys at my company are older and turn down NE and lumber loads (because the tarps are heavy), which I understand.

I used to go home every 2 weeks but started staying out for a little over a month now and I have not seen much difference in pay.

I really do like this company and would like to stay, the issue I think is they give the senior drivers the few good loads they do have.

Long story short if the miles were available I would be ready and willing to run them, it just hasn't been the case. I average around 2400 - 2700 miles weekly (putting my pay around $1100 - $1300 Gross). I just ran 3,400 ($1,650 gross) this last week but this is a rarity.

I'm just hungry for work, don't want to sit around at truck stops away from my family with not much to show for it.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Old School's Comment
member avatar
I average around 2400 - 2700 miles weekly

Thanks for getting back to us with this!

The information you shared was great. It looks like you are understanding how to manage your time and doing a great job of it. Here's what you need to do now.

Talk with your driver manager and just let them know you would appreciate the opportunity to turn some more miles. Tell them what you are averaging, and then tell them you are confident you could handle another 3 or 4 hundred more miles per week. You certainly could do that based on the information you gave us.

I worked for a company where everybody I knew complained that there just weren't enough miles available. I always had all I could handle. The trick was in how I went about things. It wasn't that they didn't have stuff available. One of the first things I figured out was that I wanted to get the longest load I could on Friday mornings. Therefore I always made it a priority to empty out as early as possible on Fridays. The best loads available go to the first drivers available. Get your manager accustomed to the fact that you will be rearing to go early Friday, and that you want something that will carry you through a few days worth of driving. Get that load delivered as early as possible on Monday and then get it on again. I always slept at receivers when possible. I would drive over the weekend, get to my receiver Sunday night, and be the first one to get unloaded Monday morning. Boom! My driver manager got accustomed to me doing that. He trusted me to shoot him an MT call by 0800 Monday. He would be ready because he knew what I was going to do. That is how you improve your mileage. "First in - First out." That is my mantra.

Don't just run your loads and then sit there waiting on them to come up with another. Before I ever left with one load I would communicate to my manager and give him an exact time that he could expect me to be empty. I always kept my word and did what I promised. That built a strong relationship of trust between us. Most driver managers make money based on how many miles they dispatch to their drivers. They take care of the ones who take care of them. Did you notice how you said this in your remarks?

I really do like this company and would like to stay, the issue I think is they give the senior drivers the few good loads they do have.

I had a discussion with my driver manager once where he spoke of me as one of his "senior drivers." I questioned him because I had only been at the company for a little more than a year. I knew there were guys there with much longer tenures than mine. He told me length of service had nothing to do with seniority. What influenced his decision making on loads was how well a driver managed his clock, his availability, and his trustworthiness. Always try to make yourself available early in the day. Always do what you promise. Always make sure you have legal time available to run.

You say you are averaging 2,400 to 2,700 per week. I know you can do more than that. You have got to prove it to your manager. You can make close to 75,000 dollars at the pay rate you are being paid, but you will have to hustle and get a lot done. I would seriously make a goal for the next year of making 70,000 dollars right there at that same company. Commit to it and see if you can make it happen. Communicate with your manager and let them know what you are trying to accomplish. They want their drivers making the most they can. For every dollar you make, they are earning more also. That is how trucking works. If they can give you enough work to keep you hyper productive, they are not only paying you more, but they are earning more.

Over the past two years I increased my pay by 10,000 dollars each year. I never got an increase in my pay rate during that time. I strictly did that by practicing things that helped me be more efficient. I challenge you to look inward instead of outward when looking for ways to increase your take from your trucking job.

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.
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