Am I Out Of Line Here?

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Ricky A.'s Comment
member avatar

I hate the thought of typing all this out but i am gonna try to keep it short. From the beginning (3 months in) i have had no support whatsoever from my home terminal. On one occasion we were dispatched back to back with loads and on one of them in the notes it stated that we must strap the load or we would not be allowed out the gate. So we preplanned a stop to buy 2 straps. We get there and send in the request for a company advance for said items. My codriver is the one who sent it. Came back as denied. Well after pulling some teeth the person who denied finally explained why (his status had not changed yet from student) and that we needed to goto t a terminalto get the straps. We preplanned our trip and a terminal was a 100 miles away. So i just sent the request myself and it went through. Solved no thanks to the night shift at terminal.

On another occasion i had been adding water to top off coolant and did not want to dilute it to where it would freeze and i was ready for a gallon of oil and washer fluid. So i got the total with tax and sent in the request for a company advance for $38 and was denied. Here we go again. So i send a message, "why?" her responce was "because you have exceeded your advance amount" (i had to buy a wiper arm, that put me over i guess) i explained that this was not "MY"advance and that i was not trying to buy fuzzy dice for the truck and asked if she was suggesting that i drive this company truck without out oil and coolant and with a dirty windshield that would might hinder my ability to safely operate this cmv. Her responce was "buy it yourself and get reimbursed" NOW I AM F'N MAD!!! I already pay for my own scale tickets and other minor stuff and wait a week to get it back. so before i express my feelings towards her i call the roadstar oncall break down hotline and ask them if i should run this truck as is. They had me fixed up in 2 minuets.

Todays episode was i had a crappy run with 24 hours to deliver a 4 hour run with hard appointments. Then i accepted a load for 17 miles that delivered many hours later. All crap. So i accept all and send my dm a message. "I have taken these crappy runs, please try to get me something with miles. Thank you" not one word. Nothing, not even a kiss my ass.

As i am new to this i still have learning to do. When i have made a mistake on the qualcomm with empty calls and such i would message my dm and say what am i doing wrong and i would get a message. "fixed" no explanation as to what i did wrong so i can correct it the next time. I really dont mean to sound like a whiney ***** but i feel as though they should be doing more. I would expect a denial with an explanation and a alternative solution. I would expect that if i communicate with my dm that i should at least get a responce. I am not making bs request. Also i have not been late once and no accidents. I am doing my job. I would appreciate your input. Thank you.

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.

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.

CMV:

Commercial Motor Vehicle

A CMV is a vehicle that is used as part of a business, is involved in interstate commerce, and may fit any of these descriptions:

  • Weighs 10,001 pounds or more
  • Has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 pounds or more
  • Is designed or used to transport 16 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation
  • Is designed or used to transport 9 or more passengers (including the driver) for compensation
  • Is transporting hazardous materials in a quantity requiring placards

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.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
Best Answer!
I would expect a denial with an explanation and a alternative solution. I would expect that if i communicate with my dm that i should at least get a response. I am not making bs request. Also i have not been late once and no accidents. I am doing my job. I would appreciate your input. Thank you.

Yeah, you're going through the same thing every driver goes through. You get out there, you're new to the whole thing, and it seems 80% of everything you come across should be done a better way or doesn't make sense. A lot of that is due to the fact that you don't have a complete picture of how things work within a major carrier. It takes time to figure all that stuff out. A year from now you'll look back on everything and it will all make more sense anyhow, if not perfect sense.

But being new means being super patient. Keep doing your job and stay on the good side of dispatch. The turnover alone in this industry is startling, even when you consider experienced drivers in the numbers. But speak with anyone in the know at a major carrier and they'll tell you there's no sense in getting attached to rookies....most of em aren't around for long. People either drop out of trucking altogether or jump ship when a few things don't go as they expect. So it's going to take 3-6 months of doing an awesome job before anyone will even begin to recognize your truck number. And hopefully by that point you've built a strong safety and service record so those gravy runs will start coming your way.

The most important thing I can tell you right now is to have the patience of a monk and a great attitude with everyone you come across. It sounds like a bunch of rah-rah cheerleading baloney, but you have no idea how far that will take you in this industry. Time and time again drivers with maybe 6-12 months experience will come back here and say, "Brett always preached having a great attitude and I heard what he was saying, but I didn't pay that much attention to it until I got out here and saw how true that was."

You'll find the same thing to be true. Daniel really nailed it. You have to be the one to demonstrate you're not only an awesome driver, but you're easy to work with. Let me tell you....dispatching is a miserable job. It's not nearly as difficult as actually driving a rig around the country, but it's equally as thankless and frustrating. If you're the type of driver that makes life a little easier on your dispatcher by having a perfect service record and doing anything that's asked of you you're going to get the recognition and the rewards that come with that....trust me.

People always ask, "What's a good company to work for?"

The correct answer is "Any company you're going to do a great job for."

Because every company depends on their top drivers to handle the bulk of the workload and the most important customers. If you can work your way into that group you'll be running so hard you'll be begging for a break.

So hang in there and keep coming back here anytime something is bothering you and we'll give you the scoop. It will all work out great for ya. Just keep doing an awesome job and be friendly with dispatch. You'll hit that tipping point and suddenly the good miles will start come your way.

smile.gif

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.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Daniel B.'s Comment
member avatar
Great Answer!

Both sides have a point here.

The fact is that you're buying things instead of picking them up at the terminal. Whenever you go to a terminal , always drive out with everything you'll need for at least a month. I personally have 2 bottles of coolant and oil, 4 windshield wipers, and a bunch of other things that I restock everytime I pass through the terminal.

The problem you're having is you're buying these items at a much higher cost than what it would cost the company if you were to pick them up through a terminal. Essentially, you're costing them money that's why it's being denied.

As far as this goes, I would rethink my strategies about how you go about this. Next time you go through a terminal stock up on supplies. A truck stop isn't the place to restock, and they certainly don't appreciate the extra costs.

I would move on. No more messages about why you didn't get reimbursed. They likely won't change their mind and you'll end up ruffling feathers if you continue. I know it's frustrating, but sometimes not saying anything is the best reaction.

Listen, you're totally new. And every single new driver goes through more bad loads than good loads. They give their gravy runs to their best drivers. You're not their best driver, but over time you'll climb the ladder and you'll notice the improvements. Be patient in this process. Good things will come. Just delivery every load on time and don't hit anything.

But besides that, attitude plays a major role in your progression. Which is why I strongly discourage messages like this one being sent to your DM:

"I have taken these crappy runs, please try to get me something with miles. Thank you"

I think that did a lot of damage honestly. Build your relationship with your DM with kindness, respect,safety, and favors. Trust me, your DM knows you've been getting terrible loads lately without you telling them. To get the good stuff, you have to work through the bad stuff. Sending a message to your DM asking for more miles or a nice load isn't a bad idea. But how you ask makes all the difference. That message you sent is definitely not the type of message your DM wants to hear. Here's a few messages I send when asking for more miles:

"Goodmorning good sir! I just delivered my load. I'm ready for hopefully a nice, long one now :)"

"Good morning, all went well with my delivery. I'm now ready for a load and to run hard! :)"

"Good evening sir. I'll be ready for a load tomorrow at 0400. Early bird gets the worm! :)"

Always include a smiley face to let them know your intentions and so they won't confuse your text with anger. They can't tell your tone so make it known you're coming from a good place. How you talk with your DM plays a major role in your success.

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.

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.
Terry C.'s Comment
member avatar
Great Answer!

I would love to see a company that will put a driver next to a dispatcher for a few days and a dispatcher with a driver for a few days so each can see what the other goes through. I can't speak with much insight into a dispatcher but I can tell you a few things: If you're working for a major carrier, chances are your DM has at least 50 to 100 drivers under his/her charge. Each one of those drivers is going thru his/her struggles on the road and contacting the DM on a daily basis. So the DM's day is spent watching the drivers on their computers and planning loads with sales/planning and talking with the drivers and talking with customers. They are busy all day long. So after awhile they get "programmed responses" to questions that they see day in and day out. They quite literally have responses already filled out that they send back when they see a question that has been asked many times before. What the bottom line of this means is don't take their not getting back to you and short answers personal. They don't dislike you yet as you haven't been there long enough to form that opinion.

As far as having to buy stuff and get reimbursed here's how things work at my company Prime Inc. I will usually have to pay cash for scales and tolls in states that don't take EZ Pass. I have to get receipts of those which I send the info by QC and get a PO# for. They will send me the PO# and I write that number down on my trip sheet I fill out and scan in with each load. Now I've had to buy things like anti-gel with my personal credit card but I do get paid back for that. That has only happened twice as most of the time I can add the anti-gel to my comdata purchase when I get fuel. I just have to remember to say yes to the question the pump asks as to whether or not you want to buy additional products inside.

The reason companies make it hard for you to buy things you need for the truck is there have been many drivers before you that have totally abused that privilege by buying huge amounts of stuff or unnecessary stuff. Laws and rules usually aren't made until something has been taken advantage of or done to excess that caused them to make a rule. Unfortunately this path was laid well before you or I became drivers as this industry has been around for many years and has seen many drivers. Don't fret....you're not alone!

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.

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.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Daniel B.'s Comment
member avatar
Great Answer!

Both sides have a point here.

The fact is that you're buying things instead of picking them up at the terminal. Whenever you go to a terminal , always drive out with everything you'll need for at least a month. I personally have 2 bottles of coolant and oil, 4 windshield wipers, and a bunch of other things that I restock everytime I pass through the terminal.

The problem you're having is you're buying these items at a much higher cost than what it would cost the company if you were to pick them up through a terminal. Essentially, you're costing them money that's why it's being denied.

As far as this goes, I would rethink my strategies about how you go about this. Next time you go through a terminal stock up on supplies. A truck stop isn't the place to restock, and they certainly don't appreciate the extra costs.

I would move on. No more messages about why you didn't get reimbursed. They likely won't change their mind and you'll end up ruffling feathers if you continue. I know it's frustrating, but sometimes not saying anything is the best reaction.

Listen, you're totally new. And every single new driver goes through more bad loads than good loads. They give their gravy runs to their best drivers. You're not their best driver, but over time you'll climb the ladder and you'll notice the improvements. Be patient in this process. Good things will come. Just delivery every load on time and don't hit anything.

But besides that, attitude plays a major role in your progression. Which is why I strongly discourage messages like this one being sent to your DM:

"I have taken these crappy runs, please try to get me something with miles. Thank you"

I think that did a lot of damage honestly. Build your relationship with your DM with kindness, respect,safety, and favors. Trust me, your DM knows you've been getting terrible loads lately without you telling them. To get the good stuff, you have to work through the bad stuff. Sending a message to your DM asking for more miles or a nice load isn't a bad idea. But how you ask makes all the difference. That message you sent is definitely not the type of message your DM wants to hear. Here's a few messages I send when asking for more miles:

"Goodmorning good sir! I just delivered my load. I'm ready for hopefully a nice, long one now :)"

"Good morning, all went well with my delivery. I'm now ready for a load and to run hard! :)"

"Good evening sir. I'll be ready for a load tomorrow at 0400. Early bird gets the worm! :)"

Always include a smiley face to let them know your intentions and so they won't confuse your text with anger. They can't tell your tone so make it known you're coming from a good place. How you talk with your DM plays a major role in your success.

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.

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.
Terry C.'s Comment
member avatar
Great Answer!

I would love to see a company that will put a driver next to a dispatcher for a few days and a dispatcher with a driver for a few days so each can see what the other goes through. I can't speak with much insight into a dispatcher but I can tell you a few things: If you're working for a major carrier, chances are your DM has at least 50 to 100 drivers under his/her charge. Each one of those drivers is going thru his/her struggles on the road and contacting the DM on a daily basis. So the DM's day is spent watching the drivers on their computers and planning loads with sales/planning and talking with the drivers and talking with customers. They are busy all day long. So after awhile they get "programmed responses" to questions that they see day in and day out. They quite literally have responses already filled out that they send back when they see a question that has been asked many times before. What the bottom line of this means is don't take their not getting back to you and short answers personal. They don't dislike you yet as you haven't been there long enough to form that opinion.

As far as having to buy stuff and get reimbursed here's how things work at my company Prime Inc. I will usually have to pay cash for scales and tolls in states that don't take EZ Pass. I have to get receipts of those which I send the info by QC and get a PO# for. They will send me the PO# and I write that number down on my trip sheet I fill out and scan in with each load. Now I've had to buy things like anti-gel with my personal credit card but I do get paid back for that. That has only happened twice as most of the time I can add the anti-gel to my comdata purchase when I get fuel. I just have to remember to say yes to the question the pump asks as to whether or not you want to buy additional products inside.

The reason companies make it hard for you to buy things you need for the truck is there have been many drivers before you that have totally abused that privilege by buying huge amounts of stuff or unnecessary stuff. Laws and rules usually aren't made until something has been taken advantage of or done to excess that caused them to make a rule. Unfortunately this path was laid well before you or I became drivers as this industry has been around for many years and has seen many drivers. Don't fret....you're not alone!

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.

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.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Thank you both for your replys. I will back off some. As far as stocking up at a terminal i have done that now. But this is the first time at terminal with this truck. Also starting out brand new its hard to tell what you need. I will get it all handled and will not have to sweat the little stuff. As far as dm goes i have messaged him 4 times in 3 weeks and have 1 responce. I am not sure if he even exist. Lol

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.

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.
Hrynn's Comment
member avatar

The fact is that you're buying things instead of picking them up at the terminal. Whenever you go to a terminal , always drive out with everything you'll need for at least a month. I personally have 2 bottles of coolant and oil, 4 windshield wipers, and a bunch of other things that I restock everytime I pass through the terminal.

Are there any other items you would recommend restocking on when at the terminal?

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.

Jopa's Comment
member avatar
Am i out of line here?

Dear " whiney *****" . . . to answer your question in a word, "YES!" Mellow out . . . how would you like 100 " whiney *****'s" on your case every day . . . not to mention you're a Newbie " whiney *****" to boot . . . life is too short to be like" "NOW I AM F'N MAD!!!" Did you scream and kick a lot as a child? You need to grow out of that phase . . . you asked for the job, they gave it to you . . . you asked for the truck, they gave it to you . . . a $100K plus truck with no strings attached . . . they advanced this to you and you are bummed you have to buy a little coolant KNOWING you'll get reimbursed??? C'mon, be a bit more humble and it will go a long way to making you much more serene . . . didn't you mother always tell you to say, "Please" and "Thank you?" Good advice . . . you should have listened to her . . . you are one of MANY so deflate your ego just a tad and enjoy the experience . . . Daniel hit the nail on the head (again) as he has learned the secret of trucker's success . . . if you can't remember your mom's advice, at least heed his . . .

Jopa

shocked.pngsmile.gif

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
Best Answer!
I would expect a denial with an explanation and a alternative solution. I would expect that if i communicate with my dm that i should at least get a response. I am not making bs request. Also i have not been late once and no accidents. I am doing my job. I would appreciate your input. Thank you.

Yeah, you're going through the same thing every driver goes through. You get out there, you're new to the whole thing, and it seems 80% of everything you come across should be done a better way or doesn't make sense. A lot of that is due to the fact that you don't have a complete picture of how things work within a major carrier. It takes time to figure all that stuff out. A year from now you'll look back on everything and it will all make more sense anyhow, if not perfect sense.

But being new means being super patient. Keep doing your job and stay on the good side of dispatch. The turnover alone in this industry is startling, even when you consider experienced drivers in the numbers. But speak with anyone in the know at a major carrier and they'll tell you there's no sense in getting attached to rookies....most of em aren't around for long. People either drop out of trucking altogether or jump ship when a few things don't go as they expect. So it's going to take 3-6 months of doing an awesome job before anyone will even begin to recognize your truck number. And hopefully by that point you've built a strong safety and service record so those gravy runs will start coming your way.

The most important thing I can tell you right now is to have the patience of a monk and a great attitude with everyone you come across. It sounds like a bunch of rah-rah cheerleading baloney, but you have no idea how far that will take you in this industry. Time and time again drivers with maybe 6-12 months experience will come back here and say, "Brett always preached having a great attitude and I heard what he was saying, but I didn't pay that much attention to it until I got out here and saw how true that was."

You'll find the same thing to be true. Daniel really nailed it. You have to be the one to demonstrate you're not only an awesome driver, but you're easy to work with. Let me tell you....dispatching is a miserable job. It's not nearly as difficult as actually driving a rig around the country, but it's equally as thankless and frustrating. If you're the type of driver that makes life a little easier on your dispatcher by having a perfect service record and doing anything that's asked of you you're going to get the recognition and the rewards that come with that....trust me.

People always ask, "What's a good company to work for?"

The correct answer is "Any company you're going to do a great job for."

Because every company depends on their top drivers to handle the bulk of the workload and the most important customers. If you can work your way into that group you'll be running so hard you'll be begging for a break.

So hang in there and keep coming back here anytime something is bothering you and we'll give you the scoop. It will all work out great for ya. Just keep doing an awesome job and be friendly with dispatch. You'll hit that tipping point and suddenly the good miles will start come your way.

smile.gif

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.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

Jopa.....

"Insert smiley here with grin and giving two one finger salutes"

smile.gif

Brett

Thank you for the advice. I went back and looked at my message to dm and i was way friendly than mentioned. I was going to apologize but after reading it was not that bad. I have been getting pretty good at patience and not letting things get to me. I will keep working on it.

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.
Jopa's Comment
member avatar

Jopa.....

"Insert smiley here with grin and giving two one finger salutes"

smile.gif

Was that two fingers or two thumbs up?good-luck.gif

. . . could't tell . . . rofl-3.gif

Jopa

smile.gif

Ralph G. ( Arejay )'s Comment
member avatar

Gotta love this place... everybody has such a great sense of humor... even when getting spanked. rofl-3.gif

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