Mileage Pay?

Topic 32794 | Page 3

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Brett Aquila's Comment
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Regardless of how you're paid, I highly encourage new drivers to keep track of everything. Make a little spreadsheet or use a notebook to track each load number, the starting and ending locations, and the paid miles. Confirm that the paid miles match what your GPS or Google Maps says for the distance. If you're being paid zip miles (used to be called Household Mover's Miles), you may find that GPS mileage is a little longer than the paid miles, sometimes by as much as 10%. It shouldn't be over 10%. If it is, contact dispatch and let them know.

When you get paid, verify everything on your paycheck. Make sure you're paid for every mile they owe you.

Over the years, I worked for quite a few companies. I was never overpaid, but almost every company I worked for regularly "forgot" to pay me for something. Every time I called payroll, they'd say, "You're right. We're sorry. It will be in your next paycheck."

If you aren't keeping track of your pay closely, I can almost guarantee you're getting shorted sometimes. Maybe it's accidental, maybe it's an unethical manager trying to increase their bonus or make the numbers look better. Who knows, right?

Keep track of everything. Verify everything.

I loved being paid by the mile for those who haven't heard my take in the past. I knew I could outrun almost anyone and enjoyed getting paid for the work I completed. I also loved that my company makes money the same way I do - by moving as much freight as possible.

I did a podcast on the subject. You can listen to it right here on our website:

Episode 8: Is Mileage Pay Fair?

I have no issue with people who prefer to get paid by the hour. I understand you feel they should pay us for the time we put in. That's valid. Many companies pay a combination of mileage and hourly, which is an acceptable compromise. If you get stuck at a shipper too long or your truck breaks down, they'll pay you for it. Otherwise, you're paid by the mile.

In the end, what matters isn't how they pay you, but how much they pay you. Look at the body of work you've done and ask yourself if you're happy with the pay. If not, it might be time to look for a better-paying job. If so, you're in good shape, and there's no need to worry about how they break it down.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Similar to Turtle, FedEx will pay additional miles if I need to reroute. Depending on the situation, there are times I don't bother putting in the request.

drive on I-5. To cross Portland (mm 288 to WA state line - about 20 miles) it can take 20 minutes or more than 4 hours! Even at $.60/mile that 4 hour drive across Portland works out to $12 - or $3/hr. Seattle, Sacramento and LA are all worse.

FedEx will pay delay pay for those situations. For example, one Saturday night I had to go to Providence. I thought to myself "it's Saturday night, the George Washington bridge should be clear".... One lane open, I sat there for almost 3 hours. I put in the delay request with FedEx and it was approved. I was paid my hourly rate of 33.12 an hour for sitting there. When I started rolling, back to my mileage rate of 0.7587 CPM.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

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

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Come drive for J & R Schugel and you can count on getting shorted anywhere from 8 to 15% of the mileage pay on 98% of the loads. I did 121 trips last year and I was paid more miles than I drove for exactly three trips. I go by the company suggested routing, use their GPS directions, and hit all my fuel stops. The recruiter never mentioned this, nor was it discussed at orientation. I'm told by the senior VP of operations that the customers set the mileage and we are paid by that calculation. May as well throw darts at a mileage/pay chart. Two trips routes come to mind: One I did three times in a row from Northfield to SLC, then return, then back again. Each one was a different mileage, and on all three I was shorted a minimum of 153 miles each trip! Another trip two weeks ago was precisely 770 miles from dock to dock, all on the Interstates, including the one fuel stop. I was paid for 683 loaded miles.

We also must pay back any tolls incurred unless it is expressly authorized in our trip routing. Additionally, if one does a non-authorized toll road, there is a mileage scale for how much is deducted from that trip's CPM pay. If it's a high toll, such as NY or PA, it can be as much as a five cent per mile deduction after the driver has the actual toll amount deducted from their pay. We waste tons of money on fuel, time, safety, and equipment wear and tear by NOT "saving money avoiding toll roads". Their reasoning is antiquated and idiotic. I don't think anyone in an upper management position here has been behind the wheel since the cabover days. If so, I haven't met one yet.

The mileage cheating scam here is really the only thing I dislike, but it is a Big Dislike.

Interstate:

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

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

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

BK's Comment
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153 miles here, 153 miles there. Pretty soon it adds up to a lot of money.

PackRat's Comment
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153 miles here, 153 miles there. Pretty soon it adds up to a lot of money.

Yeah, and I've kept track of it since Day 1. I always have kept track of all the numbers, not just miles and pay. Not just here but at every company I've driven for.

I'm not even going to total it up for 2022 because I would bet it's somewhere in the ballpark of driving an entire month of a calendar year for no pay. Once the neverending Biden-induced inflation is factored in, it's enough to question the sanity of even driving for monetary reasons. It's had me depressed more and more with each passing month.

This is just my input and I am not seeking any sympathy, pep talks, or encouragement from anyone.

Ryan B.'s Comment
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We waste tons of money on fuel, time, safety, and equipment wear and tear by NOT "saving money avoiding toll roads". Their reasoning is antiquated and idiotic.

I had a conversation with the operations manager at my terminal , and I broke down a couple of trips where I was routed around PENNA Turnpike coming out of South Jersey going to Richmond, OH and the other was coming out of South Jersey going to Cincinnati.

I explained that the lower fuel mileage that I was getting by running the US highways to avoid the Turnpike, as well as the increased number of miles, the fuel costs alone were negating any savings in not paying the toll. I explained that on top of this, my clock is having 2-3 more hours used by not running the Turnpike. Sure, that additional time is not compensated, but it cuts into my ability to maximize my time, thus cutting into the ability of the company to make money from my time usage. I explained that when you extrapolate that across an entire terminal fleet of 200-300 trucks, taking multiple trips like that every year, it's millions of dollars lost to fuel costs. When factoring in the other costs or lost revenue, it's in the 10s of millions of dollars every year. My terminal operations manager told me to stop doing so much thinking and to just drive the truck. It's an aspect of how most businesses have become quite short-sighted. They operate quarter to quarter and don't consider long-term expenditures.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Ryan B.'s Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

153 miles here, 153 miles there. Pretty soon it adds up to a lot of money.

double-quotes-end.png

I'm not even going to total it up for 2022 because I would bet it's somewhere in the ballpark of driving an entire month of a calendar year for no pay. Once the neverending Biden-induced inflation is factored in, it's enough to question the sanity of even driving for monetary reasons. It's had me depressed more and more with each passing month.

To avoid that depressive thinking is why I don't keep track of the difference between miles driven and miles paid.

I do keep track of my settlement sheets that come with each paycheck. I have found a couple of mistakes in like 20 months. They were genuinely honest mistakes.

As Brett mentioned, I am happy with my pay in relation to the time I put in. There is still room for income growth as I become more efficient.

No pep talk, sympathy, nor encouragement here. Just using you as an example as to why I avoid doing what you have done in tracking the differential between paid miles and driven miles.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
I'm told by the senior VP of operations that the customers set the mileage and we are paid by that calculation

That's true. I thought this was odd when I first heard it myself, but once I thought about it, I understood why.

When trucking companies negotiate with their customers, they don't always negotiate the rate per mile. They negotiate the actual mileage of the trip. Why?

If they allow for a lower rate per mile but keep the same trip length, the trucking company will lose revenues, but they'll still have to pay the driver for the full distance.

However, if they negotiate the length of the trip and allow for fewer miles, they also pay the driver less for the trip, so the loss isn't as bad for the company.

Weird, right?

It reminds me of the way restaurants often shrink the amount of food they're serving instead of reducing the prices. It's not a tactic you would expect.

Chief Brody's Comment
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To add a little insight into mileage pay being set by the customer, my paid mileage in tanker is closer to actual miles driven as compared to when I drove flatbed for Prime.

In flatbed, our BOLs would list the mileage for the load (set by the customer). I would get paid for the mileage, as listed the BOL. Essentially, it's automatic: once the mileage for the load is entered into the system, the computer system applies it to all aspects of that load, including driver pay. If the difference was substantial I would say something to my FM and he would add mileage to the load.

In tanker, we have to get the tankers washed out. Unlike our fuel stops, the computer does not determine the tanker washout location. My FM has to select the tanker washout location. And, he includes the mileage to the tanker washout, which is entered manually. Otherwise, we would really get shorted.

This morning I watched my FM adjust the routing for a driver who had to drive to additional locations as part of the load. My FM entered four separate city locations and the computer recalculated the load mileage for pay purposes.

Thus, even with the same company, such as Prime, the mileage calculations for pay purposes differs.

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.
BK's Comment
member avatar

One secondary aspect to mileage pay is driving to a home time location. That mileage is not paid, but the company furnishes the truck and the fuel for those trips. Tomorrow I am driving over 100 miles for home-time, where I will park the truck and then go on vacation for one week. Pretty generous of the company.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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