i work for heartland now. i will try and give you "just the facts"
1. heartland doesn't pay any holidays (except christmas) if you are sitting on thanksgiving with no load- you get no pay. (i was out thanksgiving but did get a run)
2. if your truck runs out of fuel on the highway you will pay to have a service team run out to you (no reimbursement).
3. if you are late for 1 load you are fired (no second chances)
4. you will stay out for 2 weeks or more when freight picks up. not a problem for me ( my indian name is "he who has no life) but may be a problem for someone with a life and family
5. there is a set amount of time you can run truck- if you go over that amount of time. . .you guessed it "your fired" (btw: doesn't seem to matter much that you are in the north in the cold. they don't want you running that truck to much. . .although i think there might be a provision to run it between 40 and 20. And forget about screaming "it's too hot out there" during the summer once over alloted time your in danger of loosing job).
6. they haul Sears and Kmart. i personally have run mult-stop loads for them 150-300 miles and that was it for the day (or at least until late at night). they wouldn't let me have another load because it takes time for Kmart to unload the truck by hand and by the time they're done you are out of your 14hrs (i'm using Kmart as an example but it goes for anyone).
7. i have a pretty good dispatcher- but generally the company really treat you badly. i had one night dispatcher try and curse me out- he calmed down a lot when i told him i thought it might be best if i started taping our conversation.
8. you are told to follow fueling route but if fueling when and where they told you makes you late it is your fault and once again: late = fired.
9. ignore all advertising about Heartland- if you are regional you will run up to Chicago, Delaware, Pennsylvania- my dispatcher did tell me i would not go above delaware though.
10. goes with 9 in that they do not want you running toll roads unless they say it is ok. example: no toll roads in Ohio, nothing going from indiania to ohio. i-70, and some others off limits in pennsylvania- if you drive them you pay. this is going to be a bigger problem for drivers that are otr as opposed to regional.
11. if you are going to drive for heartland GET ON YOUR KNEES AND PRAY YOU GET A GOOD DISPATCHER
the good things are:
1. the trailers are easy to adjust (haven't had a problem pulling tandems yet)
2. free wifi at most terminals
3. you will have to always take the truck and trailer through maintance shop to have them checked out.
4. the pay is good -when your moving.
Also talk to some Heartland drivers and ask about some of these things (at least five drivers, i'd say. should give you a good feel for the company)
Good Luck 12-6-09
Sandman88 has it about right on.
its ok for the driver to freez, but if temps get below 20 ,you have to idle truck to save Heartland from a road service call.
last week my FM said i had idle percent of 13, fleet average was 7. he said i was a little high and needed to bring it down.
the company i worked at before had icon idle and never said a word about idle time under 23 percent. heartland has no apu, no icon idle, no inverter allowed. makes it rough but they do have good starting pay and excellent equipment.
i run midwest regional i get good miles and am home most weekends.
so if good pay is your main intrest heartland is a good company, if you want all the extras you better go work for one of those .32 cpm companies.jtrnr1951 Thanks this.
If you don't mind freezing -HeartLess can be a decent company.
-just remember there is no crying in trucking if they fire you over something frivolous. -Typical bottom-feeder firing tactic.
-You didn't get 8mpg
-idle not <5%
-you blew a tire
-your logs are "off"
-you moved the truck
--->and bottom-feeder trucking companies complain they can't find enough drivers while your car has been parked for a month and under 12" of snow in an unplowed lot.
I worked for Schneider in the early 90's and we could not idle for anything. Wasn't nothing that unplugging the Tachometer didn't fix and then let her idle.
So my point is, do what you have to do and if you get caught there's more fish in the sea.
By the way i never got caught at SNI.