5 Commandments for using a helper (On Topic)

Over disciplined0123

Well-Known Member
Funny how this thread got resurrected 6 years later. lol. IT'S ALIIIIVE

With plenty of time before the 2018 peak season, I'd like to relate a bit of my experience as a DH these past two years that I've been working.

That first year was rough. I started out knowing nothing about anything. First it was unload, then trailers. Eventually the supes realized I had a brain, so they took me to load package cars. Building was new, so we were loading in PDCs while things were getting built inside. That "gentle" Winter breeze flowed right through those things along with any rain and kept you nice and freezing. :cold: Personally, I didn't mind too much since I run hot when I work. :thumbup1:

Peak season was in full swing and I learned about DH and signed up immediately. Took me a couple of days to get used to DH work and the peak season schedule. This was the first time I was working 14 hour days, but I got used to it and I started looking forward to it. Drivers were nice enough I guess.

About half way through peak, I got moved to a package car that delivers a mall and the surrounding area. The car has to be loaded by store. It took me about a week to learn the basic format, but the driver was gracious enough to explain things little by little, and the load improved over time. Eventually, it became my favorite truck to load and I have it down to a science. By chance, I started to DH for this driver and we ran together during both peaks. Running this route really opened my eyes to how loaders can make or break a day for both driver and customer. It also helped me really learn how to load so much better. There is a difference between loading a truck like a part-timer and a driver.

This mall driver was flawless. He had experience, has the route down to a tee, paid for my meals, made me deliver to babes, and knows how to use a DH properly. That route runs like freaking clockwork. After that first peak, it was pretty much guaranteed that I was to load THIS truck and DH THIS route because of how well things run.
Last peak, when the driver had to call in a few times, I got set up with some rookie drivers who know nothing about the route and little about driving. The route planner tried to explain the route to the driver right there as I was bulking in. After the planner left, I told the driver to forget all that, and where to go for his first two stops while I got myself ready. Stop for stop, I know that route like the back of my hand, and I've never even touched the wheel.

Now, I'm just biding my time and waiting to graduate to feeder. I've been told I'm going to be hard to replace. I've tried training people, but no one wants to learn the load, and the set is a heavy workload. I'm not too worried. I'm sure there will be someone who isn't scared of sweat and has a good head on their shoulders... eventually.

As for DH?

DH is awesome if you have a good driver. It helped me improve my work ethic and keep the driver in mind while loading. You get to meet people, make friends (if you're delivering business usually), get ogled by the general public, and the pay isn't terrible either. :thumbup:
Exactly it is all about the driver. Every helper I had in the last 10 years I actually still talk to through texting we would always try to have fun to make the best I’d prob one of the worst :censored2:ty experiences this new DH ever had . Sometimes you have to Cuz if they quit on you your pretty much by yourself that day till they find you a new helper (been there done that and it sucks ). People don’t realize your truck is so packed that almost impossible to find a box at times so you skip to next stop .. Can’t do that too much or you will be driving back to everywhere .. most years I will dump my 6000 and 8000
 
I’m 2/4 year progression as a FT driver... so I’m not making that “5 times that much on overtime” than what helpers make. That’s not to say I still don’t make good money, but since I have no pick ups on my peak trip (huge split) because it’s mostly all Residential, 75% resi, 25% commercial, I don’t get tips. Besides buying them lunch/dinner, what else can I possibly give them? I can’t share half of zero tips with my helper...
 

Griff

Well-Known Member
I refuse to accept responsibility for an employee of UPS who was, knowingly (by UPS), not TRAINED PROPERLY by the company that hired them. I have never, and will never, sign or give my helper any forms or safety materials. I will drive safely, do the job as I do it the rest of the 11 months of the year, but you will be riding at your own risk.
 

DowntownTillman

Disco gypsy
I don't care how cool you are with a driver.. if you miss a day and a family member didn't pass then you are a *! Commitment is everything. Retraining sucks!
 
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Thoroughbred Teamster

Well-Known Member
The season is near! Last peak I actually worked less hours than normal, ugh. I kept telling myself to just send my helper on their way after their guaranteed hours were reached but by the end of the day I kept them even to deliver my misroutes at the end. I got lazy AF.

Reliability and safety supersedes all else. Gimme the 80 year, I ain't trippin. Last year had a lovely older gal who everyone else complained about but I was fine with.

My only advice is never invite your significant other to help you. I did that once and the arguments we had in between stops in the dark, wet weather, while customers were complaining why their ham-in-a-box was melting and wet is a nightmare I will never forget.
 
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