Hello, I hope everyone is good and healthy, considering current events. I wanted to get some input on a company that I will probably be driving for once I get my CDL, the company is XPO northern NV. The scoop is, I was about to test for my CDL, but the China virus happened and now I am waiting for things to get back to normal so I can test and get my CDL, right after that I should be able to get employment at XPO, tell me what you guys think about being a new CDL driver and working for XPO. Any input greatly appreciated.
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I’m located in PA so I cannot speak for the terminal you will be out of but I’ll share my experience. Management was very nice no issues. Expect to run your 14 hour clock out everyday because you will always be forced to run a via as the lower guy in seniority. Management is less concerned about seniority and getting the job done than the senior guys. If you overstep your boundaries you will have issues. At least here in PA they have an extremely high turnover rate and are putting brand new drivers through school and straight to pulling doubles. I don’t know if this was always a common practice. As far as dock work goes I wouldn’t have a cookie cutter image in my head of just driving it around for a few hours a night never getting off. You will be on and off of that forklift several times pushing and pulling freight that is awkward/fallen/spilled or needs to be pushed or pulled into a better position for your forklift to pick it up (at least for a beginner). You will also be required to switch out propane tanks for the forklifts and trust me more times than not they will be out of fuel when you get one. When you get to your breakdown terminal you will find that there are only a select few people that will help you. It’s usually a free for all and everyone is out for theirs so I suggest you adapt the same mentality or you will be stepped on. Finding a forklift and keeping one throughout the night can be frustrating. As far as money I was grossing at least 1200 a week at bottom rate but they bumped all of up to six month rate after a month $25 for dock and .56 for mileage. I left because I had an hour commute and after a 14 hour day I just couldn’t do it anymore and found a job closer to home it had nothing to do with the company itself.
I don’t know all the details, but I doubt XPO will be around much longer. They bought up a bunch of Companies. When I deliver to their terminals, they’ve barely got freight, compared to Estes and Old Dominion. The manager tells Me work is slow, not any OT available. Just seems like a company ready to shut down any day.
Ok... I'm gonna give away some personal info. I figure it's worth it to inform potential day cab job seekers of what to expect.
I work for XPO Logistics. Although I work out of a smaller service center and not a large hub, I believe I know enough about how the company operates to be informative.
XPO will hire inexperienced or non CDL drivers and put them through an on the job training and probation program. During this time they will be paid a flat weekly rate equal to 40 hours at the starting rate of around $23 hr. I don't have the exact numbers, and the wages vary slightly depending on the region and location, i.e. larger cities and service centers may have a bit higher starting wage and/or payscale.
There are some unionized locations, but they are mostly in the south and east coast. The non-union facilities try to operate very close to union rules to keep the unions out and the hiring benefits competitive with other similar big name LTL carriers.
That being said, new hires will be at the bottom of the extra board(available work). My facility doesn't require "on call" as it were, but if you want to work, you had better be available when needed. My management is courteous enough to try to be reasonable as far as asking extras to interchange shifts mid-week, but there's times when they will ask you to work days and change it up to nights mid-week. That's trucking for ya!
Each new calendar year all non-salary employees are required to bid on the available positions respectively. This is entirely based on seniority, therefore those with the longest service record will get first choice on the most ideal shift or run to suit their needs. The lowest senior employees will get whatever is left. This is a turn off for many new hires who aren't willing to put in their time and work their way up to the better shifts/runs.
Vacation time requests are also turned in at the beginning of the year and are seniority based, therefore if a particular day or days have been booked up by the senior drivers, you may be denied those days. After the initial requests have been given, anyone may put in for vacation at anytime on a first come first serve basis.
Currently at XPO new drivers will be given a substantial raise each consecutive year of service up to the completion of three years in which they will reach top pay scale. At my location the hourly is a little over $28 hr. and around $.68 CPM for linehaul. Hourly drivers also receive time and 1/2 after the 8th hour each day. There is a 401k retirement plan with stock options, and decent family medical, dental, vision benefits with several plan choices depending on individual needs. This is mostly a Monday thru Friday job with paid holidays.
Hourly start time bids are for local pick up & delivery runs, which usually start in the A.M. hours and will consist of a delivery route around a local area and pick-ups before returning to the service center. This may involve multiple tandem trailers being pulled to another nearby town for delivery, liftgate deliveries, or a longbox full of freight. Depending on the day a driver may have 10-25 stops including pickups. Long hours are not uncommon. The biggest challenge of P&D is getting the entire route done before the customers close up for the day, so it really helps to get to know the regular stops and try to work around their various hours, lunches etc.
The linehaul runs are some day and some night, again, this depends on the location. My service center currently has 2 meet & turn day runs consisting of 2 drivers on each run. These particular runs are doubles or triples, and are in excess of 500 miles for a round trip where they meet halfway with drivers from another service location and do a power slide(swapping trailers).
We also have a couple of night runs where the drivers make a round trip to a FAC(freight assembly center), which is another dock or service center where freight is transferred to its respective destinations.
Here are some cons that will probably turn potentials away...
At XPO drivers are trained to work the dock, loading and unloading trailers. Not all bids require dock work, but it comes with the job. The drivers who are on the dock are paid hourly, just as if they were driving. The linehaul drivers who travel to another dock each night for the FAC are commonly expected to report to the dock upon arrival to assist in unloading and loading their own trailers for the return trip. This usually consists of 2-3 hours of dock work each night. They are paid the mileage rate and then hourly for dock time. Most XPO docks are non climate controlled, so it can be a little tough in extreme weather conditions. I live in the mountain states, it can get cold so you have to bundle up and be prepared for it.
The other biggest turn-off for anyone looking to hire on are the cameras, yes they are forward and driver facing, so if the EOBR triggers an event the camera will record and cache 11 seconds of video, some before and after footage of the incident. This is the part where many of you drivers reading this will say "I'm not ever driving for one of those companies."
I get it, but I'm just being as informative
as I can.
Oh BTW most of the trucks are Cascadias,
some new, some old, some automatic, some 10 speed. There are still a few older Ford Sterling tractors too, but these usually are reserved for city runs, so line drivers get the newer equipment. Trucks are loosely assigned to senior drivers but slip-seating is what it is and nothing is set in stone.
I think I'm done with my novel, I hope it helps to inform people about XPO Logistics, and if you have any more questions, let me know.
Thanks for reading!!!
Thanks for the post snowlauncher. Sounds like a pretty decent gig BUT I just personally CANNOT change from driving during day to night and back and forth it. It wouldn’t work for me. I feel like that would be the biggest con I bet many people feel the same way (especially with dock work).
When I was doing linehaul during night I saw significant amount of XPO doubles in ditches (During summer too with perfect weather)...I wonder if lack of sleep was the main cause.snowlauncher Thanks this.
Where many people go wrong with the graveyard shift is the idea that “oh look, I’m getting off work in the morning and I have the whole day to do things.”
Right.... everything except what you SHOULD be doing, which is SLEEPING!!
You could usually tell how many hours of sleep a driver got by their eyes...eyes don’t lie. LOL You would just hope he got back safe.stillwurkin Thanks this.
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