Sifting through the mess

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by rroney7768, Aug 13, 2014.

  1. rroney7768

    rroney7768 Light Load Member

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    Jun 26, 2014
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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    Hi all,

    I'm starting CDL school this weekend at Roadmaster in Fontana, CA. I've done a tone of research on schools, companies, everything, for about the last two months while waiting for WIA approval. My only real priority in a trucking company is that they allow pets. My question is this; how in the world do you choose a company to start with. There are so many companies and so many factors. Granted, I might be over-thinking things, but, how do you sift through the garbage to find the gems? Appreciate any help!
     
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  3. Chinatown

    Chinatown Road Train Member

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    If your #1 priority is a pet policy, then that narrows it down. Focus on looking for companies that have pet policy and hire out of California. I'll start a list and other drivers can add or comment:

    Melton Truck Lines - APU's
    Navajo Express - APU's
    Watkins-Shepard
    Southern Refrigerated Transport
     
    rroney7768 and blairandgretchen Thank this.
  4. Tai

    Tai Medium Load Member

    Besides having pets what is important to you?

    To many having a truck with an inverter and an APU (Or atleast an idling policy that allows me to actually idle if no APU is on the truck.) is important since the truck will likely be my "home" for a large part of my month/year. So this would facter into my choices. Suggestions I've heard is come up with a list of things you care about and pick 3 that are most important. If a company isn't able to meet all 3 of those don't even progress beyond that.
     
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  5. icsheeple

    icsheeple Trailing the Herd

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    Nov 1, 2013
    Kansas City, KS
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    You could always try Swifting through the mess...
     
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  6. ramblingman

    ramblingman Road Train Member

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    Check out Gordon trucking?
     
    rroney7768 Thanks this.
  7. fishnman

    fishnman Light Load Member

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    Peoria ,Az
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    There's no such thing as over-thinking things in determining which company is right for you. Many companies will hire newly graduated drivers. The key is making sure that the company you choose fits your needs and your lifestyle. So, you have to determine what your needs are, then search for a suitable match. For instance, if you must take your pet while training, will the company allow a pet while you are on a truck with a trainer? Will the trainer allow it? Does the company pay a fixed salary during training and for how long? If they do fixed salary, they will work you as many hours per week as they can. if You're paid mileage, you may have a randomly fluctuating income, much like working for commission. Does the company offer a Sign-on Bonus, or tuition reimbursement? My first job was with Covenant Transport. They paid me a $2500 sign on Bonus, and paid me $125 per month in tuition Reimbursement, even though my tuition was paid through unemployment. Find out if they require you to drive team initially, or if you can go solo right after training. Again, compare your needs with what the company offers. And lastly, make sure that you speak to a recruiter at the company. Develop a comprehensive list of questions to ask about the company, their pay policy, the job requirements, etc. These OTR companies Need Drivers!! But don't let a recruiter just sign you up without doing your due diligence. " They'll answer all your questions in orientation. We need to get you signed on and get your travel arrangements made". Statements like this are a recruiters way of getting you to commit to orientation, while avoiding answering your questions. If a recruiter tries that tactic, either move on to the next company, or speak to a different person. Recruiters' pay is performance based at most companies. This means that they will do whatever they need to do to get you into an orientation.

    try posting a resume on CareerBuilder, Monster, etc. And also on sites like EveryTruckJob.com. Post an application on these trucking job sites and you'll get a ton of phone calls, e-mails etc.
    Lastly, don't hurry if you have the tome. It sounds like you've already done a lot of homework. Don't stop yet. Many companies/recruiters will be pushy in an attempt to get you signed on and into orientation. Choose carefully and you'll do fine.
     
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  8. rroney7768

    rroney7768 Light Load Member

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    Jun 26, 2014
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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    Thanks for the replies everyone. I guess I should have started this thread with a little more info. I do not need to bring my pet along during training. She'll stay with family until I'm in my own truck. As far as other priorities, I would like a company who uses APU's but, based on what I've read on this site that would narrow my choices down quite a bit. Inverters are pretty important since I do quite a bit of work online (I'm a part-time photographer and need to be able to use my laptop). There are two companies I've already started a relationship with, Knight and Melton. If I go with Knight I'll train in their refrigerated division since they're right down the road from me and with Melton i would do a week in Tulsa for tarp and strap training and then be on the road with a trainer. The Problem with Melton is, according to what I've read, it will be a while before I can get to california to pick up my dog. I'm not really concerned about hometime since I pretty much won't have a home lol. I'll be able to stay with family when not working but I want to keep that to an absolute minimum. Anyway, I truly appreciate any feedback from some veterans out there. It seems like there are just way too many choices and far too many things to consider. I'll definitely do everything suggested above and update this thread while I progress through this adventure. Thanks again everyone :biggrin_255:

    I should have also added that a priority of mine is that the company does driver training like its a solo truck. I don't understand why any company wouldn't ( other than the obviois financial factor). I'm not going to learn anything unless there's a trainer right there to teach me, not a trainer sleeping while I'm driving or vice-versa.

    Ive also got a friend of a friend who owns a car hauling company who has offered to help me out a litte in contacting some of the larger companies. From what I understand the pay is a little better?
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2014
  9. rroney7768

    rroney7768 Light Load Member

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    Jun 26, 2014
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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    Thanks for the info Chinatown, I spoke to Melton and they are very high on my list. The other companies you listed haven't even come up on my searches which makes me glad I posted this thread. I'll contact them tonight.
     
  10. rroney7768

    rroney7768 Light Load Member

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    Jun 26, 2014
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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    Haha .. icsheeple .. from what I've seen online Swift doesn't allow pets. That may not be true but I haven't contacted them yet since everything I've read says they don't.
     
  11. rroney7768

    rroney7768 Light Load Member

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    Jun 26, 2014
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA
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    They're on my list of companies to contact ramblingman, but I haven't yet
     
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