We just started with FDCC in June and have been on the road for a few weeks now. Just wondering how hard it is to get home when you need to be there? In orientation it sounded like it was luck of the draw!!
Luck of the draw is right! Non directional dispatch. When we started several years ago we were told if we were to get within 300 miles of our house go home...
We live in the Saint Louis area and figured this would not be to hard to do... Wrong We have spent a few months and not come within 500 miles of Saint Louis.
If we have made an appointment or we have been out longer then three months we go home and sometimes that has been a long dead head. There are very few times in the year when we HAVE to be home which helps. When we know it is time to go home we start watching our load opps and if the load is going the wrong way we do not accept it.
This is the only time I do not like working here.
I was 400 miles from home (We were in Nashville ,Tn and live an hour so of Chgo) and had 3 days to get there. My thinking was Detroit,Indy,Milw,anything that paid good and would put me closer than 400 miles would be good.
Dispatch got so frustrated with my turn downs they put me O/S three days early.
If my preception that close to 1/3 of the fleet is O/S at any given time is correct,we must have a lot of people doing a lot of needless deadheading.
My thought is they should add one directional dispatch person. You could then go O/S Directional.
That person would work on working me to where I need to go. IF they can load me,we all win. The company covered a load,I did better too.
I could be limited to one O/S/D per month, or even one per quarter.
To me, something like this would be the biggest operational improvement Fedex could make.
Good luck getting home.
You're on your own for that. Panther has a pretty good system called HomeTyme and if they can do it FX could do it at least as well if they only cared to. There are a number of things they could do, like that or in updating/improving procedures, but the office is satisfied to continue with the antiquated systems since they mainly annoy/inconvenience us not them.
FedEx needs some kind of system to address this. They don't pay attention when they are told that we need to head home. They STILL send us loads that we cannot take and often get annoyed when we turn them down.
One time, a few years ago, I had to be home for some minor surgery. We were in CA with two weeks to go. We did NOT get a load headed east, not even a crummy one, and ended up flying home. It cost less than the dead head would have.
When we talked to recruiters and when we went through orientation we were told several times FXCC does not have directional dispatch.
When we have sat with dispatchers and a load comes through they are given a choice of trucks that can make pickup on time and are available for the load. The computer does not recognize home time as it is not built into the system and as far as I know is not going to be built into the system.
Has orientation or recruiters changed since we started and now tell potential contractors there is directional dispatch?
I planned my wife's surprize birthday party to be Sat before a Mon jury duty.
Again in Nashville,I had a dispatcher yelling at me that I was doing the company a disservice by staying in service and turning down loads.
It was pretty upsetting.
Two years later, the previous posts Nashville incident was to get to a daughter's wedding.
There are just sometimes you really have to be somewhere. And it isn't always "home".
At orientation they did not promise to get you home. There was kind of a humorous undertone to such a thing! How preposterous that we would want to go home! But as long as we have been truck drivers that has been the standard. I have always been confused by this. I would think that the turnover would be lower if this is something they (all companies) could improve on. That and sick time, vacation time and holidays. It is absurd.
Unless it's something very new they specifically say there is no directional dispatch. The problem with that is that other companies that aren't FedEx can and are doing it. If they can do it we should be doing it. There isn't anything that any expediting company does that FedEx shouldn't do and do better than the others are doing it. We should be leading in every area and in those where we aren't leading we should be rapidly pursuing leadership.
When we do need to be home, we start limiting the loads we'll take about two weeks in advance; no California or western US. Nothing west of the Mississippi in the week prior. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. We try to get the deadhead down to less than 400 miles. Since we only try to get home every 6 - 8 weeks, it has not really been too much of a problem for us.
If we do happen to be close to home, we'll take a day or two off. It can be frustrating at times, but such is the nature of the job. If we take too much time at home, our bank account becomes very unhappy
Starting to dial back and limit load selection seems a little counterproductive.
I'm not being critical of their policies. Seems to me that something could be changed to improve on this problem.
Then,what do I know ?
Good Luck getting home. We were in Brooklyn NY and needed to get home to MA for truck repairs. We DID NOT tell dispatch that we needed to go home because of a fear that they would only send us loads going west. We know there are loads out of a particular company in NJ that go to MA and ME almost everyday so weren't worried about it. I was not offered any of these loads. In the end we dead-headed about 180 miles which is nothing...
But the minute my repairs are done and I head back out every load offer is sending me back into New England. One was even from VA to my hometown... How ironic is that?
So my suggestion is- whenever you need to get home: find your own load = a back-haul. There is a list of "FedEx Approved Brokers" on the extranet. I have had some luck with CH Robinson- although they dont pay very well. Also I am an E-unit not sure what their freight looks like for other sizes.
We stay out on the road for months at a time- we average 3 months between visits home. Its just not worth the aggravation of trying to get home more often.
What kind of revenue,to the truck, have you actually gotten doing this ?
If any of the loads were ten pallets or less and 13,000 lbs or less, you do know what a D load is. I think most Cs can do 6 pallets and 5,000 lbs or more.
This may be interesting to research, but I suspect it'd only work in an emergency situation.
We are like you. We don't have any "friends on the inside" so we seldom attempt getting home. Unfortunately, this mind-set makes it much easier to be happy here.
If you can adjust to their system, you can be happy here. You are not going to adjust their system.