Trucking companies are looking for people who can get a lot of work done reliably and, of course, safely. That sums it up right there. Be safe, reliable and work hard. But there is a little more to it than that.
Of course, trucking requires a high level of intensity when it comes to safety. Let’s explore some of the most important safety aspects of trucking:
- Manage your time so you are well rested when it is time.
- Do a thorough pre-trip inspection
- Keep plenty of distance in front of you during a driving.
- Leave your emotions at home. Do not let frustrations or stress cloud your awareness on the road.
- Plan your routes thoroughly ahead of time so there are few surprises, no low bridges, and no missed turns.
- Do not be lazy and be diligent. Get out and look back when parking.
On Time Appointments
You absolutely must be on time to all your appointments. Even a 95% on-time delivery record is poor. If you cannot make all your appointments on time, you are going to be sitting around at truck stops and do nothing. Obviously, if there is a serious snowstorm or the truck breaks down that might be out of your control.
Stay as far ahead of schedule as possible, pay attention to the weather, be creative with your strategies. Make sure you keep your truck in the best shape possible, it is going to prevent you from being late due to breakdowns or bad weather most of the time. Do not think of a snowstorm or breakdown as a “free pass” when it comes to on-time delivery.
Pushing Appointment Times Forward
It takes an experience and some improvisation skills to get the feel for this, but you can often get loaded or unloaded ahead of schedule. Here are some tips:
- You can call customers ahead to see if they will take you early. Most of the time they will not guarantee anything but show up early anyways.
- Be super friendly with the dock personnel. Have a couple of jokes in your back pocket, ask them about their day to show you care about them as people and that you’re not just all about you.
If you wait for the appointment times you are going to lose out on a lot of opportunities to get more miles. Stay ahead of schedule and push those appointment times forward. You will get a lot more miles that way.
You Should Follow All the Regulations
No doubt, the hardest working drivers get the most miles. This is not an industry that treats everyone equally. Some drivers get a ton of miles all the time, most are somewhere in the middle, and a few just get the less.
To be at the top of the earnings list you need to gain every advantage you can in the eyes of dispatch. You need to:
- Be safe
- Be on time for every appointment
- Lobby for more miles all the time
- Communicate your situation well
- Be friendly and professional always
- Do the dirty work without complaining
Trucking is a competitive field. You are not going to be handed top miles, you are going to be competing for them with your fellow drivers. Make sure you are one of the top performers consistently and work on yourself to be sure you earned your spot at the top.