Many questions; need lots of answers, please

Warning: long thread. Any and all answers would be appreciated. Thanks.

First, a little about myself, so you know where I am coming from: I’m 44 years old and drove a truck for 20 years. I lost my wife and parents in the span of 2 years and got sick of the b.s. on the road and quit(lack of parking, people shooting me the bird, trying to wreck me, being woke up at night by prostitutes). I got up to 477 pounds, but spent the last 1.5 years losing 225 pounds and I took a job at our local UPS on the preload shift ....

It’s a small place and we work from approximately 2am to 9:45am, but we sometimes get off early, and they’ve got me loading 3 trucks and a small trailer off of a belt. The physical work is definitely hard, but I prepared for that losing weight, but mentally it’s a little tough for me, because I’m a Virgo and I want to do it perfect ....

1) I just got an ID today and can log in. I’ve noticed that the computer is showing a start time of 2am. Does that mean that I don’t start getting paid until 2am, even though I come in early? Also, I’ve noticed that the start times are staggered on a chart, and some of the kids are telling me that your pay doesn’t start until THAT time. However, they want us all there at 2:00am for the “cover our butts, safety talk.”

2) When will I get paid? I started on April 14. Do they pay weekly or every two weeks? If weekly, shouldn’t I have received a check, already?

3)Are you allowed to work multiple jobs within the same facility? I’m used to making more money than this and 30-35 hours, per week, @ $14.50/hour ain’t my kind of money. Or, do I need a side job?

4)The lady who runs the entire night shift is adamant about writing numbers on boxes. I only see the need to write the number if I can’t peel the tag and face it out. When I asked her, the response was,”It makes the load look good.” The drivers say they’d rather have the PAL sticker out, if possible.

5)Should I put small boxes and tee shirts, with the same PAL in front of or behind the bigger boxes? My supervisor says in front, but that makes no sense, since it seems like they’re gonna just fall off. I talked to one driver and he said he was okay with them being put in the back.

6)Everyone says the drivers are “pissy,” but they’ve all been nice to me. Is that because I’m wearing the blue vest, or because I’m doing a good job? Two of them said, “this is loaded better than it has been in a long time.”

7)Why doesn’t everyone work as a team? I notice that I walk down to get “blow byes” and take them back up to the next section, but no one does this for me. Also, I try to help others out when I can, to take items off the belt and place it by their car, but only one other person(another trainee) has done this for me. Also, I seem to be the last person leaving everyday.

8)What’s up with some of the drivers coming in early? Aren’t they Union drivers? I know they’re not working off the clock?! If so, why? We’re in SC, which isn’t exactly the bastion of Unions. Why would anyone work for free?

9)How long does it take to become a driver and do I really want to do this? I notice some of these guys are still running after dark andome of the cars are packed to the gills in the morning. How do I go about “bidding” for this opportunity, once my 30 days are up?

10)Would a better alternative be to try and drive the feeder trucks, since I have a CDL? Does it pay good? If so, how would I go about going in that direction?

11)What do you guys mean by a “runner?”

12)What is the “9.5” that y’all are talking about on here, all the time.

13)Should I join the union as a package handler, or wait until I become a driver? As dumpy as our facility is(that’s an honest assessment, as it is nasty, dusty, and very leaky), I don’t see what they’re doing for our small place.

14)Any tips to load more efficiently would be appreciated. I try to at least get everything off the belt, but sometimes I get huge piles in front of my door or have “blow byes.” Last night, I, literally, had about 50 boxes in a row for one car. The supervisor had to help me out, which was embarrassing. I’m trying my best to play “Tetris” and pack the cars more efficiently to leave room down the middle. Do I really need EVERY single box in exact sequential order?

15)Thanks again for any and all tips/answers.
 
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eats packages

Brings a Switch to work
This is not your first gig. Should introduce yourself to people, call phone numbers especially to the local union office for some advice. Try to see how long the wait is to drive. Work here can be so stressful though. I both fear and envy you've already seen enough in life to know it's all %100 BS.

Load advice? You are going to be better than everybody there in less than a few months I'd garuntee it. It's just loading like books until the shelf is full lengthwise then go for depth/height time does not matter once you have union seniority.
 
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542thruNthru

Well-Known Member
Warning: long thread. Any and all answers would be appreciated. Thanks.

First, a little about myself, so you know where I am coming from: I’m 44 years old and drove a truck for 20 years. I lost my wife and parents in the span of 2 years and got sick of the b.s. on the road and quit(lack of parking, people shooting me the bird, trying to wreck me, being woke up at night by prostitutes). I got up to 477 pounds, but spent the last 1.5 years losing 225 pounds and I took a job at our local UPS on the preload shift ....
Congratulations on the weight lose.

It’s a small place and we work from approximately 2am to 9:45am, but we sometimes get off early, and they’ve got me loading 3 trucks and a small trailer off of a belt. The physical work is definitely hard, but I prepared for that losing weight, but mentally it’s a little tough for me, because I’m a Virgo and I want to do it perfect ....
Stop trying to be perfect and just do the job the best you can in the time you have.

1) I just got an ID today and can log in. I’ve noticed that the computer is showing a start time of 2am. Does that mean that I don’t start getting paid until 2am, even though I come in early? Also, I’ve noticed that the start times are staggered on a chart, and some of the kids are telling me that your pay doesn’t start until THAT time. However, they want us all there at 2:00am for the “cover our butts, safety talk.”
You do not get paid earlier than your start time unless management starts you earlier. Staggered start times are normal. Find out your exact start time and then be at your work area at that time to clock in. If they are making you show up early and not paying you then inform a steward and then file a Article 17 grievance "paid for time".

2) When will I get paid? I started on April 14. Do they pay weekly or every two weeks? If weekly, shouldn’t I have received a check, already?
Weekly but the first check is after two weeks. Since you just started just do as your told and show up when they say till you pass probation. Don't rock the boat until then.
3)Are you allowed to work multiple jobs within the same facility? I’m used to making more money than this and 30-35 hours, per week, @ $14.50/hour ain’t my kind of money. Or, do I need a side job?
You can sometimes double shift but that's if it's available and if you have seniority. Best bet is to get a side job.
4)The lady who runs the entire night shift is adamant about writing numbers on boxes. I only see the need to write the number if I can’t peel the tag and face it out. When I asked her, the response was,”It makes the load look good.” The drivers say they’d rather have the PAL sticker out, if possible.
Do what she says. You're still in probation and it doesn't matter what the driver's want. They are not your manager or sup.


5)Should I put small boxes and tee shirts, with the same PAL in front of or behind the bigger boxes? My supervisor says in front, but that makes no sense, since it seems like they’re gonna just fall off. I talked to one driver and he said he was okay with them being put in the back.
Again this is something you can change later but for now work as directed "WAD"
6)Everyone says the drivers are “pissy,” but they’ve all been nice to me. Is that because I’m wearing the blue vest, or because I’m doing a good job? Two of them said, “this is loaded better than it has been in a long time.”
Its because you're doing a good job but you'll run into whiney driver's soon enough. The old has beens are the worst. ;)
7)Why doesn’t everyone work as a team? I notice that I walk down to get “blow byes” and take them back up to the next section, but no one does this for me. Also, I try to help others out when I can, to take items off the belt and place it by their car, but only one other person(another trainee) has done this for me. Also, I seem to be the last person leaving everyday.
Teamwork is a word management likes to use. This is a job not a sport. Do your best and if you like help out others when or if you have time. You're last to leave because you're new with no seniority and you probably make the least.

8)What’s up with some of the drivers coming in early? Aren’t they Union drivers? I know they’re not working off the clock?! If so, why? We’re in SC, which isn’t exactly the bastion of Unions. Why would anyone work for free?
Because they are idiots. Don't start troubling yourself with what others do. There will be plenty of time for that if you pass probation.
9)How long does it take to become a driver and do I really want to do this? I notice some of these guys are still running after dark andome of the cars are packed to the gills in the morning. How do I go about “bidding” for this opportunity, once my 30 days are up?

This would depend on your area. Find your shop steward and ask these questions. Also ask for a contract and the locals phone number.
10)Would a better alternative be to try and drive the feeder trucks, since I have a CDL? Does it pay good? If so, how would I go about going in that direction?
Everything is by seniority. Feeder is some areas is quick in others like mine takes 20 years.
11)What do you guys mean by a “runner?”
Someone that skips lunches/breaks and works unsafe to get of early or please the bosses.
12)What is the “9.5” that y’all are talking about on here, all the time.
Don't worry about it till you become a driver.
13)Should I join the union as a package handler, or wait until I become a driver? As dumpy as our facility is(that’s an honest assessment, as it is nasty, dusty, and very leaky), I don’t see what they’re doing for our small place.
Yes you should join the union. Don't be a scab.
14)Any tips to load more efficiently would be appreciated. I try to at least get everything off the belt, but sometimes I get huge piles in front of my door or have “blow byes.” Last night, I, literally, had about 50 boxes in a row for one car. The supervisor had to help me out, which was embarrassing. I’m trying my best to play “Tetris” and pack the cars more efficiently to leave room down the middle. Do I really need EVERY single box in exact sequential order?
Just do your best. Speed will come as you go. Speak with your co workers if you have any question.
15)Thanks again for any and all tips/answers.
No problem. Good luck and I hope you make it.

Also join the union once you pass probation. I'd hate to think I wasted my time helping out a scab.
 
Warning: long thread. Any and all answers would be appreciated. Thanks.

First, a little about myself, so you know where I am coming from: I’m 44 years old and drove a truck for 20 years. I lost my wife and parents in the span of 2 years and got sick of the b.s. on the road and quit(lack of parking, people shooting me the bird, trying to wreck me, being woke up at night by prostitutes). I got up to 477 pounds, but spent the last 1.5 years losing 225 pounds and I took a job at our local UPS on the preload shift ....

It’s a small place and we work from approximately 2am to 9:45am, but we sometimes get off early, and they’ve got me loading 3 trucks and a small trailer off of a belt. The physical work is definitely hard, but I prepared for that losing weight, but mentally it’s a little tough for me, because I’m a Virgo and I want to do it perfect ....

1) I just got an ID today and can log in. I’ve noticed that the computer is showing a start time of 2am. Does that mean that I don’t start getting paid until 2am, even though I come in early? Also, I’ve noticed that the start times are staggered on a chart, and some of the kids are telling me that your pay doesn’t start until THAT time. However, they want us all there at 2:00am for the “cover our butts, safety talk.”

2) When will I get paid? I started on April 14. Do they pay weekly or every two weeks? If weekly, shouldn’t I have received a check, already?

3)Are you allowed to work multiple jobs within the same facility? I’m used to making more money than this and 30-35 hours, per week, @ $14.50/hour ain’t my kind of money. Or, do I need a side job?

4)The lady who runs the entire night shift is adamant about writing numbers on boxes. I only see the need to write the number if I can’t peel the tag and face it out. When I asked her, the response was,”It makes the load look good.” The drivers say they’d rather have the PAL sticker out, if possible.

5)Should I put small boxes and tee shirts, with the same PAL in front of or behind the bigger boxes? My supervisor says in front, but that makes no sense, since it seems like they’re gonna just fall off. I talked to one driver and he said he was okay with them being put in the back.

6)Everyone says the drivers are “pissy,” but they’ve all been nice to me. Is that because I’m wearing the blue vest, or because I’m doing a good job? Two of them said, “this is loaded better than it has been in a long time.”

7)Why doesn’t everyone work as a team? I notice that I walk down to get “blow byes” and take them back up to the next section, but no one does this for me. Also, I try to help others out when I can, to take items off the belt and place it by their car, but only one other person(another trainee) has done this for me. Also, I seem to be the last person leaving everyday.

8)What’s up with some of the drivers coming in early? Aren’t they Union drivers? I know they’re not working off the clock?! If so, why? We’re in SC, which isn’t exactly the bastion of Unions. Why would anyone work for free?

9)How long does it take to become a driver and do I really want to do this? I notice some of these guys are still running after dark andome of the cars are packed to the gills in the morning. How do I go about “bidding” for this opportunity, once my 30 days are up?

10)Would a better alternative be to try and drive the feeder trucks, since I have a CDL? Does it pay good? If so, how would I go about going in that direction?

11)What do you guys mean by a “runner?”

12)What is the “9.5” that y’all are talking about on here, all the time.

13)Should I join the union as a package handler, or wait until I become a driver? As dumpy as our facility is(that’s an honest assessment, as it is nasty, dusty, and very leaky), I don’t see what they’re doing for our small place.

14)Any tips to load more efficiently would be appreciated. I try to at least get everything off the belt, but sometimes I get huge piles in front of my door or have “blow byes.” Last night, I, literally, had about 50 boxes in a row for one car. The supervisor had to help me out, which was embarrassing. I’m trying my best to play “Tetris” and pack the cars more efficiently to leave room down the middle. Do I really need EVERY single box in exact sequential order?

15)Thanks again for any and all tips/answers.
Settle down
 
Congratulations on the weight lose.


Stop trying to be perfect and just do the job the best you can in the time you have.


You do not get paid earlier than your start time unless management starts you earlier. Staggered start times are normal. Find out your exact start time and then be at your work area at that time to clock in. If they are making you show up early and not paying you then inform a steward and then file a Article 17 grievance "paid for time".


Weekly but the first check is after two weeks. Since you just started just do as your told and show up when they say till you pass probation. Don't rock the boat until then.

You can sometimes double shift but that's if it's available and if you have seniority. Best bet is to get a side job.

Do what she says. You're still in probation and it doesn't matter what the driver's want. They are not your manager or sup.



Again this is something you can change later but for now work as directed "WAD"

Its because you're doing a good job but you'll run into whiney driver's soon enough. The old has beens are the worst. ;)

Teamwork is a word management likes to use. This is a job not a sport. Do your best and if you like help out others when or if you have time. You're last to leave because you're new with no seniority and you probably make the least.


Because they are idiots. Don't start troubling yourself with what others do. There will be plenty of time for that if you pass probation.


This would depend on your area. Find your shop steward and ask these questions. Also ask for a contract and the locals phone number.

Everything is by seniority. Feeder is some areas is quick in others like mine takes 20 years.

Someone that skips lunches/breaks and works unsafe to get of early or please the bosses.

Don't worry about it till you become a driver.

Yes you should join the union. Don't be a scab.

Just do your best. Speed will come as you go. Speak with your co workers if you have any question.

No problem. Good luck and I hope you make it.

Also join the union once you pass probation. I'd hate to think I wasted my time helping out a scab.
Wasn’t a question of if, but when. I will do it. I just want to make sure that they’re going to have my back when my pay get screwed up, which happens at every job, and is the root core of my bitterness. I EXPECT TO BE PAID PROPERLY.
 

burrheadd

KING Of GIFS
Wasn’t a question of if, but when. I will do it. I just want to make sure that they’re going to have my back when my pay get screwed up, which happens at every job, and is the root core of my bitterness. I EXPECT TO BE PAID PROPERLY.

then you might be at the wrong place
ups in notorious for altering time cards and various other schemes to cheat you out of monies
 

542thruNthru

Well-Known Member
Wasn’t a question of if, but when. I will do it. I just want to make sure that they’re going to have my back when my pay get screwed up, which happens at every job, and is the root core of my bitterness. I EXPECT TO BE PAID PROPERLY.
Your pay will get messed up at some point for sure. Just make sure to file a grievance and it will get fix with penalty pay.
 

Red Devil

Well-Known Member

Good can’t be too safe. If I was you I would join the union when you make seniority and ask most of these questions to a steward. Ask your supervisor too but don’t trust their word 100%. Sometimes they lie and sometimes they just don’t know for example if you ask a preload supe questions about becoming a feeder driver they would have no clue. Anyway dues aren’t much you should pay your share because you never know when you might need somebody to go to bat for you. The union isn’t perfect but it’s better to be in than out. Oh also ask for a contract book too.
 

PunkboxRocker

New Member
Dude you’re gonna rock as a preloader, you actually care. I’d take you in a heartbeat. Don’t’cha worry bout writing on the boxes, the labels are more legible and work perfectly. Work smart, I hope you make it to Driver, it’s a good gig. In my fast growing territory it’s like 4 months, we can’t keep good preloaders at that rate, but it’s not like that in most of the country. So head down, be optimistic. & deffo support the Union ASAP. We’re collectively why it’s a job worth doing.
 

542thruNthru

Well-Known Member
@AikenRooster if you stick with UPS I hope you stick around the site. I wish I knew about this site when I first started. I missed out on a lot of things at UPS because I didn't have anyone to really ask. Sups and HR are worthless. The union is good but you have to get involved and sometimes that's hard to do being a PTer. This place comes in handy.
 
@AikenRooster if you stick with UPS I hope you stick around the site. I wish I knew about this site when I first started. I missed out on a lot of things at UPS because I didn't have anyone to really ask. Sups and HR are worthless. The union is good but you have to get involved and sometimes that's hard to do being a PTer. This place comes in handy.
Thanks. My immediate supervisors are actually OK, IMHO, and seem to be helpful. The one on the “out” side of the belt is always helping his guys. Mine disappears, but arrives to help when I get slammed. It’s a small place. My understanding is that the hubs are run like military operations and people get yelled at. Now, the lady over the operation, at night, is strictly business. I didn’t realize it, because she was on vacation last week, but, the whole atmosphere changed when she came back, this week. The supervisors don’t seem to like her.

I still haven’t received a paycheck. I didn’t say anything. If I don’t get one before my 30 days, I will file a grievance the day that they let me join the union.

BTW, I talked to a driver who just got back from medical leave. He was out two months from a dog bite. He showed me the pictures. You could see the muscle and ligaments and sinew where the dog tore his legs up. I hope he wins his lawsuit against the homeowner. That’s something that scares me because I got bit the other day on a bicycle ride, and I get chased a lot.
 
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