What New Truck Drivers Need To Know About Trucking Company Pre-hire Letters:
Drivers who plan to go to a private truck driving school should get as many pre-hire letters as possible.
Many schools actually require pre-hire letters as a condition of enrollment.
A pre-hire letter is a trucking company's verification that a driver appears to meet their minimum qualifications for hire.
A pre-hire is not a guarantee of a job, but means that a driver will be considered for employment after graduating trucking school and getting their CDL.
Pre-qualifying helps to ensure that a CDL driver is hirable, even after getting their CDL.
What Is A Pre-Hire Letter?
- A pre-hire letter is basically a formal invitation to the driver by a trucking company to attend new driver orientation, at the company's expense, after getting their CDL.
- Indicates that a driver appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but does not guarantee a job with that company.
- Pre-hire letters will be based on the information provided on the driver's application for employment, and will include a background check, employment verification, and motor vehicle report (MVR) check. It is important to be as up-front and complete with the information provided on the application. These checks will drag it up, and discrepancies will not be look on favorably.
- In other words, it is a way for potential drivers to assess their hireability before starting CDL training.
- It is in the best interest of the CDL driver to obtain as many pre-hire letters as possible, to increase their job opportunities.
How Do Drivers Get Pre-Hire Letters?
- Drivers should make sure that they meet the age, medical, education, and legal requirements for getting their CDL.
- See Also: CDL Qualifications For New Drivers.
- Double-check with the trucking school and companies to be sure that they will hire new drivers from that particular school.
- Prospective students should attempt to get pre-hire letters as far in advance as possible, as the process could take several weeks.
- Normally, drivers will fill out a regular application with a trucking company. Generally, the option should be available online for most companies.
- Indicate that you do not yet have your CDL, and are interested in obtaining a pre-hire letter.
Tips For Getting Pre-Hire Letters:
- Apply to as many trucking companies as possible, and get as many pre-hire letters as you can.
- Follow-up with the trucking companies once you have submitted your applications. They are buried in applications, and drivers should try to follow the progress of their application. In many cases, the squeaky wheel does, in fact, get the grease.
- Be honest and up-front. Provide thorough and accurate information about your past, as discrepancies may lead a company to think you are trying to cover something up.
- Make sure that you have included all information that is asked for on the application, no matter how old. Unless a time-frame is specified on the application, assume that the company wants you to go as far back as possible. All of it will show up on a background check, anyways.
- When asked for specific employment dates, do your absolute best to make sure that the dates you provide are accurate.
- Check your spelling, or have someone check it for you. If your application is difficult to read or understand, it stands a better chance of being passed by, or discarded altogether. Make it easier for trucking companies to want you to drive for them.
- Generally, if the trucking company reviews an application and denies it, it will be a minimum of 6 months before they will review another application from that driver.