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Why I changed Companies [03 Sep 2007|12:13am]

So, a lot of people keep asking me why I changed companies. Well, let me give those with the curriousity a little lesten in finances. I am also going to make this post searchable in the hopes that anyone else just starting out in the field will learn from my mistake.

Ok so here is how it lays out. When you go to work for a lot of these companies, they really push their lease program on to you. So much so, that they will even go as far as telling you that it will take a lot longer to become a company driver. Ok, so let me break it down for you.

When you lease a truck, they will begin by telling you that you will be making a salary of lets say for arguement purposes 89 cents per mile. Now, here is the thing about this decision. You are responsible for every little thing on that truck. Your fuel is going to average you about 25 cents per mile even with the companies greatest discount. Ok with me so far. (Assuming that the company is discounting the fuel to 1.25 a gallon and you are conservative with your fuel and can make it get 5 trip miles per gallon.) Ok now you are down to .64 cpm. Now you put back another 7 cents per mile for your maintenence fund. You are now at .57 then you put another 7 cents back for taxes. You are now down to .50 cents per mile. Those are the bare necessities. You are now making 50 cents per mile, oh but wait you forgot something. You are allways going to have other little things come up besides that as well. So let's put another penny per mile back for scales tolls and other things. (This is greatly underestimated if you have to go anywhere east of Misouri.) You are now at .49 cents per mile. You have to come up with 700.00 a week for your truck payment. You now have to drive 1429 miles just to make the payment. After that you make .49 cents per mile. You have to drive another 1,021 miles to make a paycheck of 500.00 per week. So now you have driven 2,450 miles for 500.00 and you worked about 49 hours to acheive it.

Most company drivers pay .34 cents per mile starting (some pay more.) If you drove 2,450 miles at .34 cents per mile you would have a paycheck of $833 minus taxes. Oh by the way, did I mention that even though you are putting money back for taxes on a cpm basis they still take out taxes on your pay?

Here is where it gets tricky. Most companies will tell you "Yeah, that's true, but you can legally drive 3500 miles a week as a solo driver." Ok so lets see 3500-1429 miles is 2071 2071 miles x .49=1014.79

Making the same run as a solo driver $1190.00.

Now here is the catch, and this is where they get you signing the papers right away. You can make, $2028.00 a week as a lease driver where you can't as a solo driver. Here's how. You take on an aprentice. You teach someone else how to drive the truck. Here's the problem with both theory's though. Number 1. Running 3500 miles a week is extreemly rare. It's rare because there are always going to be delays. Delays at the shipper, delays at the reciever, delays just getting fuel etc. You only have 14 hours in a day that you can run. Of those 14 you can only use 11. If you use 11 every day you will eventually run out of hours, because you can only use 70 in 8 days. Number two is you have to teach someone how to drive a truck in YOUR truck. You know that 7 cents per mile you are putting away for maintenence? Kiss it goodbye. These kids don't have a clue what they are doing. I didn't, you won't, and neither will anyone that get's into your truck. They will tear up the transmission, the brakes, the clutch, the motor, and damn near anything else you can think of.

Why did I change companies? Well simply put, once you lease a truck, they will not let you go back as a company driver. Why would they? You are going to stick them with the truck. Fortunately for me it didn't take long to figure out that the math didn't work out right. I went as a company driver for JB Hunt. I feel like I'm doing pretty well with it. Keep in mind that not all companies scam you this way. Some pay there lease and owner operators a lot more. CR England however, does not. As a company driver you are at the mercy of someone else just like with any other job. A lease driver does not have to take every load assigned to him, but just see the way the company treats you if you turn one down. I hope that if you came accross this, while looking into truck driving I have given you an education. It is very common sense. When you go through school or orientation they will make it much more complicated, but trust me my math works, work it out for yourself if you don't believe me. Their math is somewhat padded. They want to lease you a truck. They make more money off of you and have to pay less on you if you do. Besides the fact that you are getting paid less, you are not getting any bennifits. They use a lot of scare tactics as well. They tell you things like "A company truck takes longer to get into." This is BS. Another one they really like to use is "Company drivers don't get as many miles as lease drivers." This is BS too. The way it works is whoever is in the area at the time a load needs to be picked up is going to get the load. And even if it were not BS who cares, you can drive 3/4 as many miles and still make more money than the lease opperator.

Good luck in your endevors.
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