Job search FAQs
Frequently asked questions about Truck Driver jobs
Besides driving trucks, a truck driver inspects the truck for any mechanical issues and performs essential maintenance before leaving for pickup or delivery. They also monitor the loading of goods into the truck to ensure they are properly secured and all the needed paperwork is filled out.
The truck driver is in charge of the goods while on transit, observing road safety and the required inspections from authorities to ensure safe delivery. This requires self-discipline while out of office as the truck driver must respect all the work policies at all times.
In general, truck drivers must be good timekeepers, good record keepers, compliant, and vast with skillful driving techniques, among other skills.
You must obtain some training and certifications to become a truck driver. Additionally, certification differs depending on the truck you intend to drive.
Basically, all you need to qualify for admission into a truck driving school is a high school diploma or a GED equivalent. Once you complete your training, you will be required to pass a few exams to earn your Commercial Driver's Licence. Afterward, you can earn your pertinent licenses, certifications, and CDL endorsements to qualify for different truck driving jobs. For example, a HAZMAT-certified driver can transport hazardous materials.
In addition to qualifications, employers look for other desirable characteristics such as communication skills, knowledge of using navigation apps, and familiarity with road safety laws. Above all, being a practical job, it would be an added advantage to have maintenance skills.
Different employers have different requirements for a truck driver job, depending on the responsibilities of the position. Some of the common ones include:
A high school diploma or a GED equivalent
Be at least 21 years old
A valid Commercial Driver's Licence, Class A, B, or C
A certificate from an accredited truck driving school
T,P, N, H, or X endorsements
A clean driving record
The salary of a truck driver may vary depending on their level of experience, location, company, type of truck driven, among other factors. However, according to the Bureau of Labour and Statistics, a truck driver can earn an average of $47,130 a year, translating to around $22.66 hourly.
A truck driver's job interview questions may target different career areas, such as experience, skills, and background. As a potential candidate, it is advisable to learn various ways to answer some common questions relating to truck driving to prove your competence in this field. Examples include:
Describe how you will handle a breakdown while on transit
How do you plan your routes?
Have you ever missed a deadline? How did you handle it?
What is your daily work routine like?
How has your professional driving experience been in the past?
How would you handle a shipment problem?
What was your longest time on the road, and how did you ensure you remained alert?
What kind of paperwork does a truck driver keep?
What are the basic safety measures you take when driving?
Truck drivers work under minimal supervision most of the time. Therefore, many employers look for extra qualities or personality traits that a candidate possesses. Here are some of the desirable traits of an ideal truck driver:
A truck driver's job is highly dependent on individual skills. Although some of these skills may not be a job requirement, they can definitely set you apart from other candidates.
Truck driving jobs are among the few on-demand jobs in the US and beyond. If you are an adventurous person, then this is the job for you.
Truck driving is a skills-based job that does not require an academic degree. However, you need to polish your driving skills and acquire the different certifications and endorsements to scale the different job opportunities available.
The salaries are also very lucrative, with many companies adopting various incentives and motivational packages, such as medical insurance, paid vacation, sick time off, for their truck drivers. Additionally, the trucking industry projects a steady growth rate thanks to the increasing market demand in most cities across the United States.
Truck drivers spend long hours on the road during the day and night. This is why the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) established the hours of service regulations for guiding truck drivers' working hours.
Truck drivers work no more than 11 hours of daily driving and no more than 70 hours of driving in a week. They are also entitled to a 34-hour rest period between the working weeks to reduce the chances of suffering fatigue and drowsy driving. Additionally, truck drivers take at least a 30 minutes break while on the road.
A truck driver mainly spends working hours on the road, and in many cases, alone. They travel through the night and sometimes during weekends and holidays. Besides, many truck drivers start their shifts early in the morning to beat traffic and deliver the goods on time.
As a result, they may stop at designated areas, such as truck stops, every few hours for a stretch before resuming the journey. Otherwise, truck drivers barely interact with a lot of people while at work as other employees would. But, on the other hand, some truck drivers build great relationships with clients or even fellow drivers they meet along the way, creating a diverse and exciting work environment.