I would rather get most of these answers from a real driver for Watkins then from a Recruiter. Anyone mind playing recruiter and answering some of these questions? Its just hard searching through thousands of threads to find this info. Shoot and it would help any other newbies from coming and asking all the same questions of you if you dont mind, i know it is a huge list. I found it in the newbie section of this forum.
Here's a list of questions that company drivers will want to ask recruiters before they decide to accept the job:
1. Will I be:
(A contract driver is usually paid on a percentage basis and taxes are the responsibility of the contract driver. There also must be a contract between the company and the driver. This contract is for the IRS audits and must meet their requirements. A good way to tell is to refer to form S S0 8
2. As an employee, how is my pay figured?
By the mile____ Rate____
3. If paid by the mile, how is mileage calculated?
Computer program such as PCMiler, HHG, etc.____
Is pay figured Per-diem? or non-Per-Diem?
4. Does the company hold back the first paycheck?
If so, how long?
One week____ Two weeks____
5. Is the driver responsible for loading and unloading?
6. If not, how is the lumper issue handled?
Company contract with lumpers____
Advances for lumpers (deduct from paycheck)____
Reimbursement for lumper with receipts____
7. If driver unloads, how is payment made?
8. What is the company policy on fueling?
Driver choice of supplier____
Company choice of supplier____
Fuel Card supplied____
Driver pays & company reimburses___
Ask the company about their fuel network. How extensive is it, etc.? Also do they used forced routing including fuel stops? One company I spoke with had a bad reputation of calculating their paid mileage but not adding in the forced routing out of route just to fuel at a particular station. Same company is known to route drivers 100 miles out, unpaid, to save this money. Also ask if the companies contract with the fuel supplier precludes the driver from collecting in the "Perks" programs offered by the fuel supplier. Can't remember which carrier has done this but it has been reported. Those perks can really help you save some money.
9. Does the company pay for:
Multiple drops and picks____
Minor road repairs to equipment such as clearance lights, wiring, etc.____
Ask the company if their shipping contracts have penalties written into them for detentions, etc., caused by consignee or shipper. The company may advertise these but so many have been reported not to pay for it. When you hit a dock, and the trucks are lined up waiting for unload, it is nice knowing that even if your company is bad about paying you then hopefully they have a clause that allows them to collect as an incentive to shipper/consignee to make sure you are not last in line.
10. How many miles per week can I expect to run? ______
11. How many days/weeks will a driver be kept out? ______
12. What is the policy on home time? __________________________________________________ ____
13. What benefits does the company offer?
Paid vacation ____ After how long ____ How much vacation time ____
Sick days____ After how long ____ How many sick days ____
Health/dental care ____Is family included? Yes___ No ____
Safety awards ____
Retirement plans/401K ____
Rider policy ____Company paid? Yes___ No ___ What are the age requirements? ____ Is it limited to family members only? Yes ____ No ____
Safety bonuses____ Based on: no violations/accidents ____; Customer Service ____; Feedback/complaints from general public____; On-time ____; SO&D ____; Idle time ____; On time ____ ; Fuel Mileage ____
On the subject of bonuses ask them specifically how they are determined, calculated and paid. Most I have spoken with based theirs on mileage amounts driven and one or two provided unattainable or unrealistically attainable mileage. Do a little math and be realistic about it to see if you could attain those mileage levels. Also ask if they pay bonuses monthly, quarterly, semiannually or annually.
14. Do you have forced dispatch? Yes____ No____
15. What regions does the company expect you to run? _______________________________________________; Does the company run in areas that you do not want go, such as Canada, Mexico, or NY? Yes____ No____
16. Does the company offer dedicated runs? Yes____ No ____; If yes, how do I get one? ______________________
17. Does driver work directly with brokers (hand-offs)? Yes____ No ____
18. What is the company policy on check calls (status for the day)? _______________________________________
19. Does the company allow pets in the truck? Yes ____ No ____ If so, are damage deposits required? Yes ____ No____; If so, how much? _____ Deposit return policy? ____________________________________________
20. Does company provide cell phones? Yes____ No ____
21. What kind of truck will I be driving? Year____ Make_____ Model_____
22. Can driver take the truck home? Yes ____ No ____
23. What kind of transmission? _________________________________________
24. What kind of engine? _____________________________________________
25. What kind of sleeper? _____________________________________________
26. Can I put my own chrome and lights on the truck? Yes ____ No ____
27. Are speeds governed? Yes ____ No ____ If so, governed at what speed? ____________________________
Also ask if the company has a policy on what average speed you are allowed to log at? One company I spoke with slipped and allow the trucks are governed at 70, they do not allow logging higher than 60 MPH. Not a problem most times but if you hit a long run, with 65 MPH legal average speed limit, then governing at 70 MPH means nothing. Also ask if the company limits their cruise control to a max speed? Have been reading where this is fairly common practice also to save fuel.
28. CB equipped? Yes ____ No ____
29. AM/FM radio/TV? Yes _____ No ____
30. Refrigerator? Yes ____ No ____
31. Qualcom? Yes ____ No ____
32. Air Ride seats? Yes ____ No _____
33. Engine Brakes? Yes ____ No ____
34. Opti-Idle? Yes ____ No ____
APUs? Yes____ No_____
Inverters? Yes____ No____
Ask what the company's idle policy is. Do they use APU's, opti-idle, etc. Is idle time tied into anything other than bonus'? Is your performance report based in any part on meeting the idle policy limits? If you continually do not meet the idle policy what is the company's policy for handling that situation?
35. How often does company purchase new equipment? _______________________________________
36. Can I purchase my truck through the company? Yes ____ No ____ Lease/purchase plan? Yes ____ No ____ Success rate on lease/purchase? __________________________________________________ __________
37. Does the company provide training? Yes ____ No ____
38. Is training paid by company? Yes ____ No ____
39. If company paid, is there a penalty if I leave the company before a specified period of time? Yes ____ No ____; If penalty, how is it calculated? __________________________________________________ ______________
40. What are trainer requirements? __________________________________________________ ____________
41. Does the trainer receive extra pay? Yes ____ No ____
42. As a trainer, will I be able to refuse to train a potential driver? Yes ____ No ____
43. Is trainer responsible for actions of trainees? Yes ____ No ____
44. What is the length of training period? __________________________________________________ _______
45. Will I be assigned solo after the training period? Yes ____ No ____
46. Are female trainers provided for female trainees upon request? Yes
____ No ____
47. Is there a smoking/non-smoking policy? Yes ____ No ____
48. Is an escrow, security deposit, performance bond, or any type of money held back by the company? Yes ____ No ____; If so, what is the required amount, and what is the return policy? ___________________________________
49. Is transportation provided to orientation? Yes ____ No ____
50. Motel/Food paid by company? Yes ____ No ____
51. Does the company pay for orientation? Yes ____ No ____
52. If I am disqualified or if I choose not to sign on, does the company pay for my transportation back home? Yes____ No ____
Additional questions to ask:
Where is the company orientation held? Remember, if something occurs at orientation you are going to have to make your own way back. I have not spoken to one company yet that will pay your way back.
How often are orientations scheduled and when is the next one?
How long is orientation?
What does the orientation cover?
Most companies will want to have their own physical and background checks performed. Ask if they will perform these, and fully complete them, prior to you attending orientation? Does not matter how squeeky clean and healthy you think you are. If they perform them at orientation and dislike something you get to find your own way home. This is one area I am surprised at with companies. I have not found a company yet that would not describe their physical and background check process with their requirements for washouts.
Do you need DOT Physical before you go?
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I read the AT's response, and there are a couple things I would like to clarify... Most loads the drivers are NOT required to LD/UNLD, unless it's a furniture load... When it is, the stop pay is determined by the origin of the load. I.e., if it comes out of the Myrtle terminal, it is a piece count (per red book), and if it's out of the Conover terminal, it's a flat $20/stp no matter if it's 1 piece or 100 pcs.
Also, if you're on a live load/unload, and you need a lumper, it is done in the form of a t-check, and WILL be deducted from your check if there is no receipt... Same with CAT scales, DIY repairs, etc...
For the most part, W/S doesn't ask us to come out of our pockets for anything... If, in the off-chance that we have to, the company will reimburse us fully...
Now, if you run over grandma's azaleas turning a tight corner that your GPS thought would be a good idea, then that's a different story entirely!!!
*Not that I know first-hand, I'm just speculating.*
Myrtle LTL= $25/stop
Anyother terminal LTL= $5-$15/stop depending on peice count
Mulit stop NON LTL loads= $5/stop
Drop n Hooks= $5
Backing trailer into a dock at a terminal= $5
T-Checks put a "hold" on that amount of your paycheck until they receive the receipt for what ever they paid for.
Thanks for the clarification. So a driver gets stuck unloading furniture sometimes? Man I hope your in shape! And you could get stuck unloading 100 entertainment centers or something for just $20?
One more thing Watkins Shepard website shows that they have a training school but the answers above say they dont provide training and have no instructors...how come?mje Thanks this.
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