The top 3 reasons truckers don't make it home on time.
Getting Back to Point A
Let’s be real: OTR truck drivers are some of the most dedicated professionals on the planet. While local truck drivers may go home daily, the average OTR trucker stays on the road for two to three weeks. All that work should be rewarded with predictable time at home, right? Not always. As every experienced truck driver knows, home time can be a moving target. But drivers work hard to arrive on time, which means they deserve to get home on time, too.
Unpredictable home time can create problems between drivers and their employers. In fact, lack of reliable home time is one of the top reasons truckers leave their companies and look for new work. Truckers need time to recharge, relax and refocus. So why do even some of the best trucking companies struggle to get drivers home on time?
At Most Trucking Companies, Making it Home is a Pain in the Ass
Every trucking company wants to consistently get drivers home on time, but it doesn’t always work out. This can be due to uncontrollable events like traffic jams or mechanical problems, but in most cases, the company can just do a better job at solving the issue. Traditional companies will often give their truckers B.S. explanations for lateness instead of doing their part to make it better. That's not how we operate at Variant.
Here are three reasons why companies with trucking jobs don’t get truck drivers home on time (and how Variant does things differently):
1. Old (or no) technology: Many trucking companies still rely on old ways of doing things. We won’t name names (for now), but we know some planners who are still using markers and a white board to plan routes. The best trucking companies, like Variant, get truckers home on time and use technology to make it happen.
That's why we use proprietary Variant technology that one-ups traditional planners by looking 48 hours into the future to plan loads. Drivers can make a request in the app, and the system does the rest. It updates every 30 minutes, making adjustments when needed for every route and every driver. Plus, the system never considers a plan that will make a driver miss home time. This technology gives Variant better predictability and helps us make sure more of our drivers get home when they want to get home.
2. Terrible ops support: Operations support team members usually have too much on their plate and not enough time. Without enough manpower or the use of technology, things can start to crumble. Truckers need individual attention from a support team member to help them make it home on time. But if the company can’t help truckers quickly and efficiently, getting home can become a complete shitshow.
At Variant, we make sure every driver has dedicated support when they need It. It's why we scrapped the outdated "fleet manager" model and have a team of operations support specialists instead. Specialists don’t need approval from higher-ups, and drivers can call on them 24/7, no matter where drivers are or what they need.
3. Poor planning: Lots of traditional trucking companies have ridiculously long processes when responding to changing conditions on the fly. When something goes wrong, the driver tells the fleet manager. The fleet manager calls the planner. And then, the planner tries to manage the situation as it unfolds. This can cause huge headaches as the planner sends their drivers on wild goose chases that just ends up taking more time.
Variant doesn't bother with a messy system like that. Instead, we use a combination of technology and human support to optimize every trip by finding the best routes and being there for our drivers at all times.
Home on Time, More of the Time
Truck drivers work hard to complete their routes on time. That’s why they deserve to get home on time. And thanks to proprietary Variant technology and our dedicated Operations Specialists, they do.
When it comes to trucking jobs with reliable home time, Variant is blazing new paths—and we’re proud of it.