After 24 years of OTR Reefer driving I decided to leave the road for my health and well being. After looking at a myriad of low paying less than 1000.00 a week local gigs, I stumbled across Sharp Transit pulling for ALDI out of Mt. Juliet (Nashville) Tennessee.
I filled out an application and interviewed with the terminal manager the next week and was hired immediately, 24 years no accidents,tickets, and clean psp. I started work the following Monday.
Orientation was 1 day at the terminal, the next day you go out with a trainer to learn how to load and unload the trucks with power equipment, and learn the routine at the stores, this lasts 3-7 days depending on how quick you pick it up, I was with mine 3 days.
The job is fairly easy, it was a little intimidating at first because i was out of shape, and over 40 lol, but that changed, I lost almost 40 lbs in 2 months, I worked hard to proved myself and have a stellar Record here, only one dumped pallet in a year, because I had a good trainer who told me to watch the pallets, if it is unstable put it in the rewrap machine or leave it at the DC. They would rather have then rework it than spill it all over a store or in the trailer. My typical day starts around 10 a.m., I load the trailer with a double electric pallet jack at the DC, usually deliver a store withing 100 miles,with an electric pallet jack,no breaking down pallets,etc, come back unload cleanout (pallets,egg racks, bread racks) and load my next store which usually goes about 150 miles, come back unload cleanout and go home. My average day is 10 hours, 5 days a week.
The pay is actually quite good for locals in this area, I can't speak for other Dc's. It works a little different, You have a guarantee of 1350.00 a week for 6 days, or 1150.00 a week for 5 days. The loads are actually paid on percentage at 35%, so you get the greater of the 2.We also have a quarterly performance/safety bonus, which is usually 300-500 for me. Also, If Aldi is slow they may ask you to work the dock loading trucks,with power equipment No Touch!, and they pay you your guarantee for that day $200 for working 8 hours on the dock, I like it because it is an occaisonal break from driving.
The Insurance is Blue Cross/Blue Shield of North Carolina, It is decent with a 2500.00 deductible, It has copays for day to day stuff. I pay 116.00 a week for family medical,dental and vision
The equipment is ok, A lot of it has been torn up by drivers that are not paying attention at the stores and running in to poles etc, now most of our stores in this region are freestanding and have PLENTY of room to back in and get out,even with a sleeper truck, We only have about 4 out of the 70 stores that are a pain,but still doable if you pay attention. Most of these drivers around here couldn't drive out of an open paper bag! Also it is slipseat, and a lot of these drivers are slobs and won't clean up after themselves, The maintenance is a duct tape and bailing wire situation, which would suck if they were otr trucks, but that is due to the fact that drivers are tearing up the trucks, so why fix them? but I am back everyday, so it doesn't bother me as much. The trucks will pass a DOT inspection though.
The management is getting better, they have a young enthusiast terminal manager that is turning things around from the previous regime, he listens and tries to get things fixed.
This should about cover things, If you have any further questions feel free to ask