Time off in winter

Discussion in 'Fedex Freight' started by blindbaron, Jan 12, 2017.

  1. blindbaron

    blindbaron Member

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    I was wondering if anyone else has to burn vacation or personal days to get time off when there are 7 to 10 guys sitting at home wanting to work??
     
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  2. FedexLube

    FedexLube Well-Known Member

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    I'm sitting home due to impassible roads, but I'm not sure I understand your question? I have no intention of pissing through my vacation days.. I'd much rather eat Ramen than burn those
     
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  3. The Point

    The Point You get it or not!

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    Unless policy has changed recently or perhaps your center falls under managements discretion you do not have to "burn a day". You just need to request the day off ahead of time unless they ask for drivers to volunteer off.
     
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  4. Redracer3136

    Redracer3136 BANNED

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    No longer are we allowed to take days off without pay. The problem stems from junior drivers not being able to get their accrued time off at larger centers.

    Example: senior driver bids his 4 weeks of vac including two weeks in Dec, say around Christmas, and the junior driver can't get these two weeks off...seniority prevails, cool. Now that same senior driver takes time off "during the winter months" and the rest of the year without pay. At the end of the year, the senior driver ends up with 5 or 6 weeks off (depending on how many days they took off without pay) while the junior driver is lucky if they get their accrued time off. If the senior driver was required to use vac/personal days when they took unscheduled time off, they wouldn't have enough time left to cover their scheduled time off in Dec, thus opening those weeks to junior drivers that originally couldn't have gotten them.

    It's a double edged sword...it forces everybody to keep up with how many vacation/personal days they have vs what they have scheduled when considering taking unscheduled time off, while the junior drivers will be less likely to work during "the winter months" because of this.

    NOT saying I agree with this methodology but I can see both sides of the fence...
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2017
  5. FedexLube

    FedexLube Well-Known Member

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    Slightly off topic, but especially in today's environment a 4 day or 3 day work week would greatly improve quality of life in this sector of trucking. I know a good number of people that'd opt for that scenario. Not sure how they'd implement it, but I think it'd be a positive improvement. I realize that for many of us our lifestyles demand that we work 5 or more days per week, but in the grand scheme of things, sometimes it's better to stop and smell the roses considering how short of a time we really have left in this life.
     
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  6. mattbob

    mattbob Active Member

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    we have an xrtra board driver that is lucky to work 2 days a week, but only 1 driver in a certain bid slot is allowed to take off to let him work. everyone else has to call off and burn time
     
  7. SwampRatt

    SwampRatt Well-Known Member

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    Good point, but...

    Anyone "can" take off without pay. The only problem there, "points" can be applied. Under the current policy, if you use/burn personal time, you avoid those points. Also those points do not apply if taken for "company convenience".

    I've not seen (in print) any policy requiring the use of paid time during slow times, when drivers are sitting home. In fact, such a policy would be contrary to the encouragement to volunteer to be off, avoiding the need to force bottom drivers off. We often loose drivers to lack of work, costing the company significant sums in the hiring process, while putting us at a disadvantage in staffing. Remember the (qualified) driver shortage? It is real, and such a policy has significant costs.

    I do see the potential effect of excessive unpaid time off, but that should be relatively rare and isolated. Certainly not as high of a priority as maintaining low turnover and high morale. This double edged sword, has one edge that is significantly sharper, and cuts deeper than the other, IMHO.

    If points are applied, and as mentioned that 7-10 drivers are "sitting at home", I would contact H/R for clarification and removal of said points. This should not be an area of center discretion.
     
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  8. SwampRatt

    SwampRatt Well-Known Member

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    We could stir the pot some more... City often creates more 4 day bids to more closely match freight volumes. Why not do this on the road side? I realize some would love it, while most would not. It does help solve a temporary/seasonal issue, and many road runs are perfectly suited for such a bid.
     
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  9. FedexLube

    FedexLube Well-Known Member

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    Exactly! I think the recent generations are coming to realize that free time is more import than overworking yourself.
     
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  10. Big Dave

    Big Dave Dispatcher for Team BRG-Wong

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    Pffttt. These Snowflakes need to man up.
    Come on, Lube. I'm sure RC would "push" you over Donner. Then he'd teach you how to mount the side pontoons and float into Reno. All while wearing that purple thong.....
     
  11. silent trucker

    silent trucker Well-Known Member

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    Word in my barn has it that BD is designated lead driver for the caravan from San Diego to Los Angeles hauling the Chargers up to their new home. Go BD! Thanks for taking these losers up to LA!

    ST
     
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  12. FedexLube

    FedexLube Well-Known Member

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    Sheeeeeeit brother, I've only had the privilege of going one time so far in the rain. Hell, I don't even know how to chain up
     
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  13. Redracer3136

    Redracer3136 BANNED

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    I agree with most of your post but I'm going to break it down to make responding easier to understand...

    Agreed, technically anyone "can" take time off without pay if they want the points for an unexcused absence. The original question was "does anyone else have to burn vac/personal days when guys are sitting at home?" My response was yes because no one wants the points. Also, as you pointed out, there are times when this falls under "company convenience" but it's obvious from his/her question that his/her case failed to meet that criteria for whatever reason.

    I agree, restricting the use of unpaid time during slow months is counterproductive to keeping high morale as well as keeping qualified drivers on board. It really falls on a center basis...in LOU the decision was made to offer drivers unpaid time off to allow others to work whereas centers like mine continue to use city drivers on the road daily. And this also falls back to some drivers getting extra time off while others can't buy time off...their has to be a balance at some point.

    Agreed...but I'm guessing it's more rare and isolated at the smaller centers where staffing/freight levels are more easily maintained whereas at the larger centers excessive unpaid time was pretty common. Not long ago I personally averaged only working 3.82 days per week for the year...and I wasn't the only one...and yet our turnover rate was/is relatively low.

    I agree but also disagree. Agreed...IMO...that points shouldn't be applied if drivers are sitting at home but disagree on "area of center discretion" based on my above response. What works for one center doesn't always work for another when concerning staffing issues...and we don't know "why" his/her request was denied when drivers were sitting at home.

    NOTE: my double edged sword comment was directed at some getting extra time off while others can't buy time off. Is it ok for the senior driver to get his cake and eat it too while the junior driver gets crumbs?? I don't know the right answer, hence my comment about being able to see both sides of the fence. My guess is the company is trying to alleviate the big peice of cake for some while trying to leave more than crumbs for others, either way some aren't going to be happy.
     
  14. Redracer3136

    Redracer3136 BANNED

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    I'll have to disageee but I'm also at a hub. While creating 4 day bids in the city may work, creating 4 day bids on the road wouldn't IMO. Reason being because at our hub we have more meet and turns than we do hub turns. 4 day bids on meet and turns would create timing issues between drivers resulting in unnecessary delay time (bid drivers hate meeting extra board) regardless of show/gate times. 4 day hub turns may be possible because of what the run consist of...interesting topic though.
     
  15. BIG R GUY

    BIG R GUY Part time Coop Dispatch driver

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    He is positioning them for last place, so the mighty Rams can be first!!!!
     
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  16. SwampRatt

    SwampRatt Well-Known Member

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    I'm not going to break it down this time, due to time constraints. Also, I want it to be confusing, thereby requiring deep thought. J/K:poke:

    I actually agree for the most part, and do understand both sides of the equation. It seems to me, as long a sufficient notice is given, AND drivers are sitting home, not points should apply. My concern is when center discretion comes in, "company convenience" potentially evolves into what is easiest for leadership, rather than what is "right". In my opinion, NO should not be the default position. Generally we should default to YES, unless there is valid and significant reasons why the answer should be no.

    We disagree on the impact on small vs large centers. numbers like these tend to effect the smaller center much more significantly. It only take a couple of people to effect a 10 driver center.

    Truth is, in my observation, the issue is often the reverse, with the guys who get the most hours/miles volunteering for (extra) weekend work. I always thought that (EXTRA) work should go to extra board first.
     
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  17. Redracer3136

    Redracer3136 BANNED

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    I'm not sure I'm capable of "deep thought" at this juncture, fixing to tee off on what should be a beautiful day here in the Carolina's!! (And yes, had to "burn" a vac day)

    I agree and would hope that "yes" would be the default but we all know that's not the case. The company's argument, and I can see their point, is that we're here to provide a service to our customers and it's those customers who not only depend on us to be here, but who also make our check possible. We can argue that we are here for the most part and that we need time off as well (to which I agree) but with our industry, we can't predict the daily fluctuations in volume so therefor it's hard to project the workforce needed for future days.

    I can see your point on centers where there's only 10 drivers but to say their effected "more significantly" might be a stretch. At larger centers such as hubs, the amount of extra runs that's created by the forementioned fluctuation of volume, especially generated by those smaller centers, is so hard to project and there's a fine line that must be balanced between having enough and having too many drivers. Not enough and you're pulling from the city which effects their operation (and whether drivers can have the day off) and too many and you have guys sitting at home...which eventually determines when guys can have days off without pay.

    Don't get me started on the "extraboard" vs "extra work" debate, that would have to be another thread entirely!!
     
  18. Southerntrucker

    Southerntrucker New Member

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    Every barn is different. Depends on the relationship between drivers and management. I'm at a medium end of the line Center. Freight levels permitting we can take off as much time as we want without burning vacation. On slow days they start at the top and work down to keep extra board with income. I personally have over 20 years in and probably had a good 7 weeks of time off last year. No points....everyone stays happy.....
     
  19. SwampRatt

    SwampRatt Well-Known Member

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    A couple things to remember:

    We have something called the PSP philosophy. People, Service, Profit. People, said to come first, for good reason. I think that should apply here. Why force those who would prefer to be off, to work, while an equal number sit home wishing they could work? Obviously there must be a line somewhere. Everyone can't have every Friday off to play golf :poke:

    As far as predicting freight levels, that is what they do all the time. They are actually pretty good at that. There is always a margin of error, due to several factors. But WITHIN that margin, there is no reason to deny unpaid days to one, while forcing unpaid time off on another.

    Under your theory, the term company convenience means it is MOST convenient (for leadership) for vacation days to be burned during the slowest season. While it is easier to accommodate vacations, and might look great on paper, it is not realistic or compatible with a healthy work/personal life balance.

    A key point to consider: What percentage of time off do you think is actually requested as unpaid? We must take it to the next logical step and ask what percentage of that number actually creates a conflict throughout the year. I suspect the terms rare and isolated would apply.
     
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  20. Trucker 206

    Trucker 206 Well-Known Member

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    I agree wholeheartedly, Lube! I used to work a 4/10 workweek decades ago, and it was a glorious time! Our girls were little back then, so it gave my wife and I two FULL days with them every weekend, and then on Monday's (my day off), I could get all the 'domestic' stuff done while the kiddo's were in school. Best years of our lives, those were. Hands down.

    I'm not sure how we could pull something like that off in freight, but since we're working 50+ hours a week anyway (even in winter), maybe we could 'split' the staff...some work Mon-Thursday, others Tuesday-Friday. Just a thought.
     

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