Cowan Systems Info From A New Hire

Topic 30914 | Page 1

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RealDiehl's Comment
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Pre hire: I received a call less than 24hrs after applying. I was offered a local delivery type of position. I turned down that offer. I want to stay out of cities and such. The person I spoke to then made me another offer. It's more of a regional position, but it offered hourly pay, weekends off, and 2 additional nights home during the week.

Once I accepted the offer and my background info checked out, my recruiter was in frequent contact with me during the next several weeks while I was finishing my time OTR with Prime. Sometimes she just texted me to say, "Hi. Have a great day." I thought that was nice.

Orientation: I had orientation in Baltimore with Cowan last Tuesday and Wednesday. I was paid my normal hourly rate ($26/hr) for the 2 days, plus I was paid 56cpm for the drive down since I drove my own vehicle.

Orientation was a little different than what I expected. All of us were experienced drivers. So less time needed to be spent explaining everything. The whole process was efficient.

We had a driver retention specialist from Cowan come in and talk to us. He showed us a chart comparing Cowans driver turnover rate for the past couple years. It is between 53 and 56 per cent. I thought that was high. Every year they have to replace over half their drivers. He then showed us the national average. How much higher do you think the national average is? It's pretty unbelievable.

I should have gone out on a ride along Thursday and Friday, but there was a foul up with my drug screen. They ended up sending me to another facility on Monday to give another urine sample.

Got a call from my FM today. I'll be riding with a "trainer" tomorrow, Friday, and Monday along his local route. Just to learn how Cowan does the non driving related things we need to do everyday. I've been sitting around too long. I'm feeling the itch to get back in a truck and start driving again.

I'll try to post about my experience in order to provide a reference for future drivers who might be interested in Cowan.

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

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.

Fm:

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.

Pre Hire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

PackRat's Comment
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Congratulations and wishing you the best there!

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
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Turned down a day cab to stay in what I assume is a sleeper truck? You sure you passed that drug test?? rofl-2.gif

But seriously congratulations on starting this new adventure!

Day Cab:

A tractor which does not have a sleeper berth attached to it. Normally used for local routes where drivers go home every night.

RealDiehl's Comment
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Turned down a day cab to stay in what I assume is a sleeper truck? You sure you passed that drug test?? rofl-2.gif

But seriously congratulations on starting this new adventure!

Ha! Honestly the local, I guess you'd call them P&D/city routes, was significantly less per hour and required NYC a couple times a week. Plus slip seating does not sound appealing to me. Maybe in the future...with a different company. OD has a place near where I'll be working out of in New Castle, DE. I considered OD. My manual restriction plus the likelihood of being a city driver scared me off.

Day Cab:

A tractor which does not have a sleeper berth attached to it. Normally used for local routes where drivers go home every night.

P&D:

Pickup & Delivery

Local drivers that stay around their area, usually within 100 mile radius of a terminal, picking up and delivering loads.

LTL (Less Than Truckload) carriers for instance will have Linehaul drivers and P&D drivers. The P&D drivers will deliver loads locally from the terminal and pick up loads returning to the terminal. Linehaul drivers will then run truckloads from terminal to terminal.

IDMtnGal 's Comment
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We had a driver retention specialist from Cowan come in and talk to us. He showed us a chart comparing Cowans driver turnover rate for the past couple years. It is between 53 and 56 per cent. I thought that was high. Every year they have to replace over half their drivers. He then showed us the national average. How much higher do you think the national average is? It's pretty unbelievable.

53%-56% is a decent rate of retention. I believe it's over 75%.

Laura

RealDiehl's Comment
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53%-56% is a decent rate of retention. I believe it's over 75%

The number they gave us is 91%. No wonder companies are constantly hiring!

RealDiehl's Comment
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Training Day One:

Met my trainer at 0400 (I was there at 0330😁) in New Castle, DE for a ride-along. Logged onto the QC, entered my info on the time sheet header, picked up our trailer, then hit the road.

He did most of the driving today. Went first to Sisco foods in Philadelphia for a drop n hook. Then went to Leola, PA for another DnH. Then back to New Castle for a DnH. Finally, went to Federalsburg, MD (I drove down there this time) for one final DnH. Currently on our way back to New Castle. Long day! All hourly, so I'm not complaining.

Spoke with the Ops manager earlier today at New Castle. He apologized for the delay in getting my drug screen results. He said I will be paid for four, 8hr days since I had to wait. Now that's how you take care of your drivers!!! Needless to say the honeymoon period is going splendidly thus far!

Need to go home and sleep immediately since I only slept about 3 hours last night🥱

Bruce K.'s Comment
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Good report, man! How were the backing situations, easy or tight?

RealDiehl's Comment
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Good report, man! How were the backing situations, easy or tight?

All were pretty easy. The lots all had plenty of space. Tomorrow we go to Jersey City. I imagine that might be more challenging. But hey, I've been to some pretty tight places with a sleeper, including Jersey City. Should be easier in a day cab.

Day Cab:

A tractor which does not have a sleeper berth attached to it. Normally used for local routes where drivers go home every night.

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