Pay for company drivers at Knight Transportation is as follows:
Knight Transportation offers its employees the following benefits:
When my journey back into trucking started. I researched all the large carriers that offered driver training. I elected to hire on with knight transportation (Phoenix, AZ) because I was out of the trucking industry for over 10 years and needed to get my CDL again. Knight seemed to work out best for me and my situation. Plus they had a port services division, which I wanted to try. The recruiters at Knight are salespeople plain and simple. Your going to hear about the great benefits, schedules, home time, pay, blah, blah, blah... Do yourself a favor and right down as many questions as you can and speak to several recruiters at the same company. Next, orientation is hilarious they welcome you into the family. They want to know all about you, your family, goals, dreams!! You meet some of the management and safety staff from the company. They tell you about how amazing the company is, blah, blah, blah. While your there they cater the lunch and you hang out for a physical and doctor evaluation. You follow that up with a drug test. When the results get back they offer you a job. Next up Squire training: This is 2 week course on driving and pre trip to get your prepared for a drive test to acquire your license. At this point keep in my mind I've already driven OTR and local in the past. I sit through the first week of pre trip review which is nice I guess. I just kind of helped out some of the other students since this wasn't new to me. Week 2 starts and you begin driving out on the road with a trainer and 3 additional students. Knight required you to CDL test in a manual transmission truck. No problem that's what I was driving before. This is when you realize how scary some of your fellow students are! I honestly didn't drive much since some of the other students required much more time behind the wheel to get proficient. The end of the week comes and I get my license. I'm happy to see the scary drivers failing the tests or dropping out of training. I'm scheduled to meet my driver trainer. I've been told its 3 weeks riding around with this guy and he's going to show me how to use the computer system and driver logs. We finally meet a few days after I get my license and go over the plan. My driver trainer seems cool, so I get ready to hit the road for a few week with him. My training starts and we hit it off and get along real well. This makes the time together much easier. I tell him that I drove before and don't really have a concern or needs when it comes to driving. My first day behind the wheel he watches me like a hawk. I go through a couple roundabouts and he's immediately comfortable with my skill set. I get lucky during my training because my trainer likes to be out 5 days or so and then head home for a few days. We finish my training training a few days early and he signs off that i'm good to run my own truck. This is where I start having problems and realize this company is a complete CIRCUS. I get assigned a truck and I'm told by whoever handles truck assignments to pick it up the following day it will be ready. I return the following morning with all my stuff bedding, fridge, supplies, and so on to start my journey. I retrieve the keys and head to see my new to me truck. As I walk to the truck I can hear mariachi music blasting.. That's normal I'm in Phoenix. I realize it's coming from my truck. I open the door and immediately try turning off the radio. None of the radio controls work! I spend 10 minutes trying to troubleshoot this problem and nothing. I go back into the office and explain the situation and she starts laughing. I tell her I'm not about to listen to that crap for 6 to 10 days can you give me a truck that was actually inspected and checked. She tells that's the only truck she has. I told her to call me when the truck was fixed so I could actually start working and make money. 2 days later the truck finally rolls out of the repair shop ready. I'll save you from the boring details of my work for the next few months and provide with a few magical highlights. My first run was some crap load every other driver i'm sure refused to do. I'm new though and just want to make money and they assign it to me. Total mileage for my first run 120 miles oh and guess what the receiver refused it. Spent all day making 65 dollars and ended up back at the Phoenix terminal and left the trailer in the yard for a local driver to deal with. I started to get some runs here and there that paid ok but something was always screwed up. Scheduled delivery times were wrong, You couldn't find empty trailers, you would literally drive around town to all these distribution centers looking for a trailer. Equipment breakdowns became normal. The thing that bothered me the most though was talking to my assigned driver manager. I was just a number to him. He didn't give a s@#t about anything. The funny thing is I lasted about 6 months there and had 4 different driver managers. Not because I ever complained about them but they would quit or get assigned some other job and I would have to start over with a new one. In conclusion I got tired of broken down equipment making .32 a mile and get jerked around by my driver manager that don't give a s@#t. I walked into the terminal on my scheduled home time and handed over the keys to my driver manager. I'll never forget the look on his face. The was the only time he seemed to give a s@#t. Of course I sat down with his boss and him, explained the situation and told them I'm tired of working at this CIRCUS! I managed to find some local work and decided to take that job. At least being home every night I can try to find better work and be available to interview if something came up.
They come across as real nice when they're hiring you and granted they are pretty nice most of the time however they're just like any other big company they don't care when it comes down to it. First time I heard from a safety manager was when he was telling me I was fired. No I didn't do anything like a big accident or drunk driving. They knew I was living in the truck and they didn't care that they picked my wife and I nearly homeless when she was pregnant too. You're dealing with a corporate Big Time company don't expect their fake family-friendliness to show when it counts
Maintenance on the equipment is dependent on the drivers letting them know. They will make repairs and do maintenance if you just tell them. Doesn't matter if its the truck or a trailer. Home time requests, just put in to be home A-day before you need to be. Safety, you call the shots. If you feel something is unsafe and say something, they do listen and will accommodate if you are concerned ends up in a delay. Each terminal does work independently so there are some differences depending on which terminal you are based out of. The pay is What you would expect for a major Carrier but there are lots of other perks and benefits to take into account. Showers in each terminal. Most terminals have free laundry facilities. As of 2019, all newer trucks are automatics. Majority of them have refrigerators. All new trucks have inverters. Monthly bonus program dependent on your performance. Great company if you want to get treated right as a human being. They will run you as hard as you want to as long as you communicate well and take charge as a driver.
Are use a sliding scale add your loaded and empty miles together and pay you at the lower rate.Good company for first year driver Who don’t know what’s going on
They will keep you on routes away from your home. They will lie. All the empty promises that all the big companies tell you will come from Knight too. Bottom line they always choose money first. And that no forced dispatch can screw you. If another driver doesn't want a run then you get stuck with what's left. Their terminals don't get along which makes routing horrible. Everything falls on the drivers. Just a mask of a slowly failing company. The only reason it doesn't look like it is because they blow up their actual market value. They claim no debt but fake accounting is worse than having debt.
I drive for Knight. I have been here almost 5yrs. They treat me very well and I make a pretty good check each week. They run me in the areas I like to run most of the time. Sometimes I get a load that I'm not crazy about but it can't be want I want all the time. They are not perfect but they have kept me here for this long so they are doing something right. The shops and communication are the biggest problem. I talk to my DM everyday to keep things in line as well as I can. I go home when I want. Rarely do I get home late. Sometimes it can't be avoided. I'm not a recruiter, just a driver that does his job and I don't complain unless I need to. I've been driving since 1988 and this is one of the best companies I've driven for.Full Discussion
I ran for Knight a few years ago, 2012-2013, and can tell you it's not high pay but it's an easy job. They run electronic logs, which like all Qualcomm setups is easy to bypass when you want to, but you need your dispatcher to cover your ### for this.(only did this twice, to make it home due to an emergency). Sliding scale pay, higher mileage pays less than shorthauls. Equipment was always very well maintained, they pay guys to detail the trucks before they are reassigned,but speed is based on mpg. You can run 65 if your mpg is decent, but once it drops to a certain point your truck will drop to 62mpg until the next cycle. They will never ask you to run illegal, and you can drop into part time whenever you want(but lose your insurance) if you want extended time off. Casual option just has to take 1 run every 30days to stay employed, but again you don't receive any benefits as part time. The daily pay option was cool- every trip turned in by 1300 was paid by 1700 the next day, and you can install the app on your phone to just take pictures of the BOL's to instantly submit them. Flexible on home time , and will normally work with you for extra time. Again, they pay less than average per mile compared to other carriers! I was a company driver, and they treated me well, but I left for a local job in Fort Worth.Full Discussion
I'll start with the good, I like my driver
manager, when I first started he ran me a lot.
The bad, they have janky ### smoked up trucks. They've given me 5 trucks and I've only been there maybe 6 weeks. You have to take them back to your terminal for work done, so I'm through Phoenix almost every week for some type of service on their 359k+ trucks. They run internationals and volvos. I was almost given an auto freight liner, but when they pinged it, it was out on local delivery. Each time, instead of waiting to have mine fixed, they throw you in another guys truck that either just quit or got fired. ####ty cleaning up after a trashed out driver every week. (Cheap labor of ya ask me).
They ran me 3400 miles my first week with them, then it slowly tapered off until I was stuck in Cali last week when they tried to say freight was slow. At that point I was routed back to the Phoenix yard for more shop work, and have been sitting at home for a week. I've always been on time, have done nothing but go out of my way to be accommodating to service requirements and changing trucks each week. I called yesterday and they finally had a truck, got inside and the check engine light was on. Some of the previous drivers crap was still inside where he left in a hurry. So I Bobtailed to shop, they sent me away cause I didn't have a trailer. Got a trailer, tried to take it to the shop, and he closed the #### door at 5 til 5. I dropped the trailer and told my DM I was leaving, call me when they had a clean, working truck. Haven't heard from him in 2 days. Tired of driving to buckeye from the house to get a messed up pos truck again.
You tell me, good company to work for?
I drive for knight now, been there about a month
and a half. I'll let you be the judge if it's a good match for you based in my
I rate Knight the worst of the 6 carriers I have worked for over 16 years. They were at the top for bait and switch and at the top for profitable carriers at the time. I sent out 2 resumes the same day in 1998, with 1 going to Knight. Knight called the same day they received it; they beat the competition by being fast on the hire, no time to check the truth of resumes, just wanted me on the plane the next morning.
BAIT: Knight paid the airfare, met me with a van, paid for the motel in Phoenix for 3 days of orientation (paid at $20/day).
SWITCH: I was tapped on the shoulder on day 2 and told that if I didn't stay at least 6 months that I would have to pay them back for the airfare, motel, etc. (no mention of this before my hire).
During orientation the background checks would be running and those who had lied on their resume were tapped on the shoulder and escorted out. But Knight beats the other carriers to the draw by hire-first-background-check-later. The small carriers never seem to think of these kinds of tactics so they lose the recruit to "fast on the draw" Knight.
BAIT: free lunches at orientation.
SWITCH: they tossed a loaf of bread on the table and a package of bologna, and this was to feed about 10 men, so one sandwich each.
We filled out paperwork to have our paychecks mailed home to us until direct deposit kicked in, but this didn't happen. No one I called from the road cared, just a lot of hold time and transfers; I found mine at the terminal when I next got there about a month later. I was a non-smoker assigned to a truck with strong cigarette smell, but it was summer so I drove with windows down for a few days but it was still nauseating. It was the most basic truck, with no arm rests, no power windows, and no air suspension dump if you wanted to slide the 5th wheel back for a smooth ride under a light load. I pulled dry vans in the 11 western states. I was issued a simple set of basic tools and a fuel filter and a few other parts and told that a tow would never be sent a driver until they had completed R&R (remove & replace) of, for example, a fuel filter if the the truck would not run. We were ordered to stop to help other Knight drivers who broke down, but would not be paid for it. We were ordered to never be seen thumping tires, but must be seen checking tires with a proper gauge instead; this is time consuming of course, and of course we would not be paid for this. We were ordered to do detailed charts of what damage was on a trailer we picked up, and this could be excruciating on an older beat up trailer, and were not paid for it. Many trailers were missing a mud flap and we were expected to go to a parts source, buy a mud-flap to be reimbursed for later, and R&R the defective flap; we were actually paid for this labor, but only $7.50 so it was't worth the time to errand the part and fight the rusty nuts involved, so I took heat for disobedience instead because I carried a spare flap and 2 vise grips for a temporary fix that I would remove when I dropped the trailer (passed a CA inspection with this temp mud flap set up too). The terminal truck wash had been out of order for over 6 months, and Knight would not pay for an outside truck wash, so a Washington State DOT Officer chose me for an inspection at their I-5 mp14 weigh station just north of Vancouver because he said he chooses dirty trucks for inspections. I never got a truck wash during the 6 months I was there, so I sweated crossing scales.
I had a lot of LTL driver unloads, and often these were to small chain retail stores between 9pm and 7am where nearly always I was lorded over by a low-caliber Nazi-style receiver who would be dripping with condescension and self-importance who would be sure to inform me he was the "night manager" and talk to me like I was a punk. This humiliating treatment was the worst part of working for Knight for me at least. I went into trucking to get away from having an overlord over me. This "manager" was also the 1 man unload crew and 1 man shelf -stocking crew, but he had a "manager" title so he was hyped up on it. The "night manager at the North Bend, WA Toys R Us was the same sort, but a female Nazi with a crew of 2 underlings with cowering demeanor. This "night manager" even had the nerve to berate me because my truck was dirty, which struck me because it was graveyard shift and there was no one to see my truck except her. At these kinds of stores, no matter the chain, we would set up roller tables end to end for perhaps 70 feet, and I would escort toasters and TVs and cases of motor oil and etc., or toys at Toys R Us, along the length of the tables to the tailgate and give them a push. It worked out to around $10/hr for lumping. So I suppose the bait was to leave a life of manual labor behind me and be a professional driver, but the switch was back to the manual labor of a truck un-loader. Knight was making a big push for more LTL customers last I checked circa 2007.
BAIT: recruiting assured me there would be loads through my house for home time.
SWITCH: I got home only one day before I quit at 6 months. Every other carrier I have worked for has done much better than this. Back then other drivers told me the only way to get home was to scream and shoot a hole in the ceiling. I'm not a screamer.
BAIT: I was told my pay would be .24 cpm (2 cents less than competitors) but on payday it was .21 cpm (now 5 cents less than competitors).
SWITCH: I got the runaround when trying to trace this and when I finally refused to take a dispatch out of Phoenix until I spoke to the one with the answer, that individual was suddenly available after all. I was told the other 3 cents were a bonus, and did I do everything on the list? What list, I asked? No one mentioned this during recruiting. I was shown a list and to qualify I had to accomplish everything on the list for 3 months before I would be paid my other 3 cents. But there were at least a few requirements that only Jesus could ever pull off. For example, I had to recruit at least one driver every 6 months that would stay for at least 6 months. I had to get 6 mpg with the truck, but it only got 6.5 on level ground and governed at 58 mph. You have to have the right grooming, no complaints from a customer, never late, etc, etc., etc. My face flushed red at the embarrassment of realizing I had been hustled by Knight. And they do it with such a straight face. Gotta respect talent, even if it's a hustler. I would be played the fool for another mega-carrier before switching to only small carriers, and now life is now much better.
My Knight dispatcher was the best I ever had anywhere, and got me better loads than most drivers got, but this was the only positive. I should have told her to call me if she ever changed carriers.
It's now almost 18 years later, so no doubt things have changed, but maybe the only change is that the gimmicks have been just made-over into a new set to cover over the rumors about the last set; this seems to be the way of the mega-carriers. I should think that being able to post reports like this at this awesome truckersreport site would give incentive for carriers to do better to avoid the bad references, so we have this advantage nowadays. Because of this, Knight might have cleaned up some, but I just can't imagine that I would ever be tempted back to Knight. Best of luck to you.
driver manager is easy to get in contact with via personal phone, company
phone, email or zonar.
I'm often preplanned (given a load) to carry me through the weekend.
I'm rarely sitting for a load, often dispatched on a load while still completing another.
Safety department is very active, one on one with drivers to improve safety and driving habits.
Nice terminals with plenty of parking and modest lounging collectively.