Truck Driving School
Company Sponsored Truck Driver School
When choosing a company sponsored truck driving school to utilize when pursuing a CDL license, it's important to do a little homework. Many trucking companies offer their own specific professional driving school. However, as with any endeavor, one must do some research to find a fit best for their own particular interests and situation.
To begin, it's important to understand what monetary requirements there may be. For example, while some company sponsored truck-driving schools may offer "free" truck driver training; they may require compensation once you've completed their program. Compensation may include driving for a particular company for a set period of time. Basically, you'd be under contract to work for a specified company for a specific amount of time; or a set amount of money may be deducted from each paycheck until the trucking company has recouped its costs. On the other hand, there are free company-sponsored truck driving schools, as well. But remember, free does not necessarily mean better! Make sure to investigate any requirements, fees, etc. before signing your name to anything!
In the early stages, once you've chosen a trucking company to go through . . . and have properly applied, they will more than likely send you to their own truck driving school. In many cases, while working towards your CDL license, the trucking company will offer paid truck driver training and cover various expenditures including lodging, transportation, and your licensing fees. This is a fairly good deal considering that as a new truck driver, fresh out of school, you can earn approximately $40,000 in their first year.
As noted earlier, you must do your homework when choosing a company sponsored truck driver school that is right for you. First, make sure that the trucking company and its affiliated schools are certified, by meeting the required standards of the trucking industry. A good rule of thumb is to verify that the trucking company is recognized by the PTDI (Professional Truck Driving Institute.)
When you've found a reputable trucking company you're comfortable with, look at what they offer to see if it's right for your particular goals. There are many trucking companies available. Some reputable and established companies include: Swift, Roehl, and Prime. The following offers some general information to keep in mind, as you strive for your CDL, regarding a good truck driving company. Remember each truck driving company may have their own set of rules and guidelines. Do your research to look for specifics!
First, realize that most truck driving companies require you to be 21 years of age along with proof of citizenship and a valid U.S. driver's license. You must have a clean driving record and a stable work history. Then you should look that the trucking company offers about 3-4 weeks with a CDL instructor. Once that instruction is completed, you should be teamed with a trainer to drive along with for approximately 4-6 months of your initial truck driving jobs. During this time, your trainer should work with you to further develop and perfect your driving skills, which are required to obtain your CDL.
Once your training is completed, and you've obtained your CDL, a good trucking company should have a job placement (offering truck driver jobs) for you within the company or through an affiliate. At first, you can expect to be on the road for about 4-6 weeks at a time. Then, when you're eligible to drive on your own, you may be able to set a better home time schedule. Even so, with the high recruiting and training costs, many trucking companies will usually have you work for them for approximately one year to pay off any up-front expenses they fronted for your truck driver training.
Another aspect that a well-rounded trucking company offers is incentives and/or programs to their graduates. Such incentives may include:
• Fuel bonus programs
• Safety bonuses
• Mileage incentives
• Medical and life insurance
Please note that these are general programs. Not all trucking companies are the same, so you'll need to find what works best for your situation.
In conclusion, by taking your time and doing some legwork, your goal should be to find a company sponsored truck driving school, which offers high quality instruction with knowledgeable instructors. You should look for a trucking company that is certified and goes beyond the minimum requirements. By doing so, you can be assured that your time and money has been a wise investment towards your future as a truck driver.