Why Becoming a Truck Driver May Be Just the Thing for You

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Maybe college wasn’t for you.  Perhaps the thought of going into serious debt for the foreseeable future turned you off to it or maybe it was four more years of school that didn’t appeal to you.  What you’re left with are low-paying, dead-end jobs that don’t pay enough to support yourself, let alone even think about supporting a family.

There is another option.  Becoming a truck driver. You, behind the wheel, wind in your hair, no boss standing over you asking you if the fries are done.  

But driving a truck doesn’t pay much, does it?

According to the Wall Street Journal, some private fleet drivers earned as much as $86,000 in 2017, up from $73,000 in 2013.  Currently, there is a shortage of drivers and many Baby Boomers set to retire on the horizon which is driving up the salaries of CDL-trained drivers.  As further incentive, some companies are offering significant bonuses―some in the tens of thousands range―for signing up with them, as well as excellent benefits packages.

I need a special license, don’t I?

Yes.  Typically, you need a CDL (Commercial Driver’s License) which can be obtained in a couple of months or less and it usually costs between $3,000 and $7,000 depending on the school.  Federal aid may help pay for the class if it meets their requirements. The good news is that some trucking companies are offering to pay the cost of your CDL training if you agree to work for them when you graduate.

Isn’t it an unhealthy lifestyle?

It doesn’t have to be.  Driving is a sedentary job, as is sitting behind a desk staring at a computer monitor all day.  Trucking companies realize this and are encouraging their employees to exercise more by installing walking paths at their place of business or starting basketball or softball leagues.  Many offer wellness programs as part of their benefits packages that include discounted gym memberships.

Truck stops are beginning to catch on as well by offering healthier food choices so you’re not stuck with unhealthy fast food.  To take things a step further, Carnegie Mellon University has been designing trucks to have all of the comforts of home including small kitchenettes so truckers can cook healthier meals for themselves while they’re out on the road.

Won’t I be away from home for weeks on end?

Trucking companies are becoming more sensitive to the fact that drivers want more time at home so they can have a normal social life or start a family.  Many are offering short hauls that run regionally. Add to that the changes in how consumers buy things and how quickly they expect to get their purchases, many retailers are building more distribution centers to get their products to their customers more efficiently, which means shorter runs for truckers.

It’s lonely on the road, isn’t it?

Long hauls can be lonely.  But many trucking companies are open to truckers bringing a pet with them on the road.  “Bring Your Dog to Work Day” can be every day! For long trips, technology has eased loneliness by allowing them to Skype with their family back home and bring along comforts like Netflix to pass the time.  Truckers are friendly people and participating in trucker forums and other social media may allow you to meet some friends on the road.

Don’t I have to be 21?

Not necessarily.  Currently, if you are under 21, you can get your CDL but you cannot drive across state lines.  You may be able to find a company that can oblige until you’re 21.

On March 21st, a bill was introduced in the House of Representatives that would abolish the under 21 rule.  The bill requires that drivers between the ages of 18 and 21 log 400 hours of on-duty time and 240 hours of driving time with an experienced driver in the cab.  Many feel this bill is just a common sense way to solve the driver shortage. Passage of the bill would be likely to relieve the shortage and also provide a solution for people who are looking to begin a good-paying career right after high school.  

Won’t trucks be automated in the future?

The keyword there is future.  There are many safety and legal concerns with driverless trucks, and even if these can be overcome, it doesn’t mean that they’ll be completely autonomous.  Truckers may need to adapt to a different definition of what it means to drive a truck but this isn’t expected for many years down the road.

No one claims that being a truck driver is an easy job but with all of the added pay and benefits currently being offered, it can be a lucrative one.  And with TruckerSearch.com, you can post your resume for potential employers or actively search our vast database of available jobs. We make it quick and easy to find a good, high-paying job.  Kick off your career in the trucking industry by going to TruckerSearch.com or call (888)254-3712 and answer the call of the open road!

CDL Class A Jobs

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Despite the growing economy, companies continue to look for ways to trim back and cut costs where they can, including reductions in their staff.  However, while other industries are tightening their workforce belt, the trucking industry is booming.

With the rise of Amazon, consumer expectations changed.  Consumers became spoiled by the ability to be able to point and click and have an item on their doorstep within two days. In order to keep up, businesses large and small needed to ship products quickly and efficiently or risk losing customers.  All of which means there are more trucks on the road than ever before.

The challenge of these new trends in shipping lies in putting drivers in those trucks.  Many people who take the course to earn their CDL will have job offers before they’ve completed it.  Sure, the potential wages that come with the job make it appealing, but the hours turn some people away.  Many people want families and the hours that go along with trucking jobs are not always conducive to a middle-class family lifestyle.  People want to be involved in their kids’ lives and that’s easier with a Monday through Friday, 9-5 job. Fortunately, the trucking industry is listening. Some are offering schedules that are more flexible and with fewer nights and weekends on the road.  Others are creating more hubs there’s no need for long hauls.

Another issue in the trucking industry is the fact that so many truckers are approaching retirement age, many more than are signing up for jobs on the open road.  According to the Department of Labor Statistics, the average age of a commercial truck driver is 55 with many of them on the verge of retiring.  Trucking companies are taking steps to attract younger drivers by offering to pay for classes so people can earn their CDL and begin working for them.  Many are making a concerted effort to fill those driving seats by targeting women, minorities, and veterans and are increasing starting pay.

The problem of the lack of commercial truck drivers is one that has far-reaching effects.  Fewer shipments mean fewer products in the stores which means demand will be higher. The result?  Higher prices for everyone. Truck drivers are quite simply a very crucial part of the U.S. economy.  

To keep shipments moving, the shipping process needs to be streamlined.  Drivers and employers need an easier way to find one another. That’s where Trucker Search comes in.  Trucker Search is a simple way for drivers and owner-operators to find companies with employment opportunities and it helps employers and recruiters find available  drivers. Through a simple interface, truck drivers can post their resume and wait for offers or actively search through the database of employers in need of them. Conversely, employers can search through resumes of truckers looking for work.  They can modify their search to narrow the results to the perfect candidate. Trucker Search is an effective avenue for employers and recruiters to advertise available positions to a large pool of interested and qualified applicants.

At Trucker Search, connecting truck drivers and employers is what we do.  It’s quick, it’s easy, and it gets truckers back on the road. Get started today at TruckerSearch.com or call us at (888)254-3712.

What Makes a Great Truck Driver?

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Trucking is one of the most in-demand jobs there is, and as long as goods need to get from Point A to Point B, the need for great, dependable drivers will be there.  Truck drivers are so much more than just someone who drives a truck. They’re responsible for customer paperwork, dealing with mechanical issues as they arise, loading and unloading freight, keeping driving logs, and even possibly transporting hazardous materials.  They are a vital link in the chain that brings a product from design to the shelves, and as a company, you don’t want to find a good truck driver, you want to find a great one.

What makes a great truck driver?

1. Reliability

The world runs on deadlines and a great driver will consistently be there to meet them.  If one person in the chain doesn’t show or does their job poorly, everything gets delayed and that one unreliable worker could end up costing you in the long run.  

2.  An Excellent Driving Record

A good driving record is an indicator of professionalism and safety.  

3.  Alertness

A great driver is always alert.  Weather, traffic, and hazardous driving conditions can cause dangers in a matter of seconds, and it’s important to always be aware and to take breaks when fatigue sets in.

4.  Physical fitness

In a profession where a major portion of the work is done sitting down, it’s essential to take the extra steps needed to stay in shape.  A fit driver is more alert and has the stamina needed for long drives, as well as the strength needed for loading and unloading cargo.

5.  Sense of Responsibility

Truck drivers are not only responsible for their truck and their cargo getting safely to their destination, but they are also responsible for the safety of other drivers who share the road along the way.     

6.  Independence

Anything can happen on the road.  A great driver will be able to handle any emergency situation with their truck and their cargo without supervision.

7.  Mechanical Skills.

Although mechanical skills are not a requirement for being able to drive a truck, a basic knowledge of minor repairs such as changing a fuse or a tire can be helpful and make your cargo able to meet its deadline.

8.  Stress Management

Driving a truck, meeting deadlines, and dealing with traffic can be stressful for anyone.  Being able to manage day-to-day stresses while remaining calm and cool is a great asset in a driver.

9.  Good Communication Skills

Throughout the day, a truck driver is in contact with the company, the clients, warehouse workers, and many others.  Good communication skills with a positive attitude go a long way to make any situation better and represent your company with professionalism.

10.  Honesty

Cutting corners can be downright dangerous in the trucking industry.  Great drivers follow all safety rules and regulations and can be trusted with whatever cargo they carry.
At Trucker Search, we know what makes a great driver because we’ve helped so many of them find great companies to work for.  Quite simply, we’re a matchmaker for truckers and companies who need to transport freight. As an employer or recruiter, you can search for drivers who are in a specific location, have certain trailer experience, years of driving experience, etc., and find the right match for your company.  As a driver, you can find a company to work for long-term or short, part-time or full, at a local or nationwide company. With Trucker Search, everybody wins. Go to www.truckersearch.com today and begin your search for a great trucker or a great job today!