Back From The East Coast

Discussion in 'General Food Service Discussion' started by MikeJ, Aug 6, 2016.

  1. MikeJ

    MikeJ Well-Known Member

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    Alright guys I'm back and it's time for the conclusion to this little 6 day trip, which by the way 6-7 days is plenty long enough to be living out of a suit case. I'm happy to be home a little tired right, now, but I need to go out and get some stuff done, need gas for my car and what not, but anyhow wasn't bad.

    Yesterday I was with a guy on a route that wasn't quite as far away from the warehouse as the other routes, however he was loaded pretty good, well there palatalized loading cubes the trucks out way quicker then floor load, but at any rate,though it was a good trip.

    The warehouse in Maryland is in a growing new market, but there man power down there needs a lot of help, most of the drivers are new and I don't mean new to the company I mean new to trucking. The guy I was with yesterday had only had his CDL for 4 weeks and he was really really trying hard, and it's just going to take time and working for GFS or US or Sysco is a very very very difficult job to do when you are fresh out of school, which is why companies like McLane and MBM and PFG don't hire out of school not really there not interested in teaching people how to drive.

    In all honesty GFS in some divisions used to train people to get there CDL's however they have stopped a lot of that they at least want people to have there license, experience they will work around, because they figure some drivers from other places have bad habits and being an OTR driver is a lot different then being a street level driver. So they needed help out in Maryland, because they needed people with some experience to kind of just train the new and show them some tips and stuff. I mean the guy I was with yesterday was pretty much receptive to everything and he was trying really hard, but he was also in his early 40's which it's one thing if you stared in your 20's, and 40-41 isn't to old, but well 40 is old if your starting a new career like this brand new.

    We have a guy at my yard who started and he's in his mid 40s and he kicks butt, but he wasn't new to trucking he had 14 years of trucking experience under his belt and it wasn't OTR for Schneider either it was more city and stuff so he was used to shorter trailers and city type stuff. It would be like if an LTL city driver came over the driving wouldn't be a big deal that would be 1-2-3.

    Your brand new to trucking and the stress of learning how to drive, learning how to back which and I'll say this I'm not Joe-1 shot backer I don't even think I am that good, but we were at a stop and he was trying to shore horn the truck in and it was kind of a tricky maneuver for a new guy it was hard, poor guy his problem was he wasn't setting up right. Eventually I said "I'll get it." I didn't get it in one shot and the way the lot was set up one shot would have been kind of hard, however I knew it could be done and I got it.

    He said to me "Man I have to learn how to maneuver the truck like you and I'll be alright." I said to him "You probably get sick of hearing this, but it just takes time."

    "That back in over there it was mostly set up that's what was going to get it, 90% of the maneuver is in the set up."

    There is a high school here that I still have trouble with and I know it can be done, but usually the few times I've gone there I've lost my nerve and just dropped the ramp and forgot about hitting there dock (It's a bad dock set up anyhow really bad design) anyhow the two guys who do it though can do it however they had to be taught there's a trick to it and it's one of those stops where even an experienced driver might take some time or two it happens.

    Anyhow so I was trying to pass along some of my little success tidbits to the guys I worked with. The kid I worked with on Monday I don't think he cared a lick about what I had to say.

    The guy on Friday though was older like I said early 40's much much more receptive which just depends on the person. He seemed to be way more interested in what people had to say. You know the hard thing is you have a yard with 22 trucks and 19 out of the 22 drivers are brand new CDL holders, and there's only 2 training bosses how do you train them all? You don't not really you kind of pair them up the best you can, call for back up from other area's of the company guys come in from out of state try to pass along the knowledge that they have and let them go and figure some will stay and some will go and that will be that.

    Running a food company when you open up a new warehouse somewhere if your in an area where there are a lot of other warehouse and trucking companies and such then it's hard to find warehouse people and truck drivers, especially if you have like a Wal-Mart warehouse or Rite Aid or Bob's Discount Furniture or Zenith truck lines where there isn't as much touch freight, well Rite Aid is touch, but it's all plastic totes and lift gates or roller ramps and it's not quite the same thing you're not running up and down a ramp so what happens is the experienced drivers all go to the places where they don't have to run up and down a ramp and that leaves GFS to have to hunt around the system for help or go to recruit from truck driving schools.

    A big headache with owning a food company is staffing the warehouse and transportation department it's very difficult to do and you have to be competitive with wages and your in a commodities business and it can be difficult, especially because it cost a lot of money to hire people and then they get up set or frustrated and quit and you keep spinning that hamster wheel for a long long time and it's just slowly though you get people who stick around, but end up going through many many people to get there sometimes.
  2. Zwilley88

    Zwilley88 Active Member

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    It's a shame they aren't closer to me. I would be there in a heart beat!
    MikeJ likes this.

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