Three weeks at CACH as an unloader

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by BreakfastPirate, Aug 18, 2006.

  1. BreakfastPirate

    BreakfastPirate New Member

    Alright, so today will be my 15th day working for UPS as an unloader, and I figured I'd share my experiences. First a little background on me. I'm just starting my senior year of high school next week, and have never had a real job before. I'm pretty much at UPS for the Earn & Learn and will probably quit after college unless I find some compelling reason to stay.

    First four days was training in the classroom. Pretty much everything was just drilling info into us through repetition. We went over basically how you do the job, what to look out for, and the whole HABITS thing. The instructors were surprisingly nice and there were never really any problems with people getting out of hand. I actually did feel like I knew what I was doing when I left training, so they must have done something right.

    Alright, so on to week two. I spent five days with a training supervisor who basically stood next to me in the trailer while I unloaded. If I did something wrong he'd just tell me what I did; pretty simple stuff though so I didn't have much trouble. Again, all of the people were really friendly and helpful. At that point I was keeping up with the work pretty well, but smalls and bulk still slow me down a lot. I'm thinking I probably just need more practice because I lose a lot of time just thinking about what to do with packages.

    So for my third week I'm finally on my own. It was kind of liberating to just be in the trailer on my own not having a supervisor leering over my back all the time. Still keeping up with the work pretty well at this point, but it's definitely slowing me down outside of UPS. I figure my body will get used to it in time, and for now it's really not a big problem. I'm definitely feeling like I'm more a part of the team now with the people that work in my area, even though I've probably only talked to about two of them besides my pt supervisor.

    And now on to the questions.

    They make us fill out these Cornerstone books and keep track of our PPH. I'm basically supposed to double my speed in the next month, which seems impossible at this point. Anyone got any words of wisdom on increasing PPH? I'm kind of worried about keeping up, especially with school starting.

    Also, would it be a smart decision to try to get a part time supervisor position while still in high school? It would be no problem with my schedule (I get out of school pretty early) and the higher pay and benefits are really tempting. The guy from HR said other people have done it before, but anyone got any input?
  2. crzy4trucks

    crzy4trucks AM Preloader

    On your belt when pulling off packages, Dont run up and down the belt as soon as you see a package for your truck, Let the belt do the work, Let the belt move the package... Work smarter, not harder... Thats what my supervisor said

    About your whole supervisor deal, Supervisor sucks ass... I have a cousin who is a Supervisor with UPS at Ontario Intl Airport Southern California, He cant stand the stress.
  3. brett636

    brett636 Well-Known Member

    That little bit of advice would be helpful if he were a loader, but he is an unloader. :wink:

    Anyways, to answer your questions, as your body gets used to the work you will find little ways to move faster and become more efficient. Just do the best that you can until your body starts to get more used to the work. Also, in my hub even if your not doing the required PPH as long as you show up for work everyday and show you are putting forth some effort they aren't going to give you the boot because your PPH wasn't up to snuff. I don't know if you can get into sorting in your facility or not, but if you can I would highly recommend doing that. Its not as hard as unloading and pays an extra $1/hr.

    As far as doing the supervisor thing, I would watch your area sup and try to tell if he is liking it much. It wouldn't be a bad idea to ask him/her their thoughts on going into part-time supervision. When I was a new hire I was told more often than not to avoid it. Although it all depends on the type of upper management that is in your building and the type of person you are. Its definitly not a one size fits all job.

    Goodluck in your new job and don't let it beat you up too bad. :thumbup1:
  4. bobcat

    bobcat Fisherman

    I don't believe that there any soring jobs at CACH. Just unload, load and inducters and baggers in the small sort as CACH is am automated sort
  5. ducky13swing

    ducky13swing Member

    Don't worry about your PPH, that will come. Keep showing up for work on time every day, you will not be fired for your PPH not being up to par. A good unload rate is 1000 to 1500 PPH. If you get to that level, you should be fine with no problems.
    As for P/T Supervisor, it is a lot of stress. Finish your senior year before you attempt P/T Supervision. You do not need the additional stress. Also, if you go from Unloader to Supervisor, you are limiting yourself as to the knowledge you have. After you get through your first 30 days, you could ask to go to the load area, irregs, PSC (based on what I saw when I was there, they could always use help in PSC). Work as many jobs as they will let you, that way you can put that on your resume to become supervisor. They like versatile people who have experience in more than one area. It helps you grow with the company.

    ADVICE for Unloading: I also started in the unload.

    Never do anything that will cause you or anyone else any harm. Always SAFETY First.

    You set the pace for the building, so your supervisor will be yelling to get you motivated (not to mention the noise level in the building, they cannot talk and expect you to hear them).

    Drink plenty of water year round, your body needs it.

    Wear comfortable clothes, loose but not baggy. No jeans, sweat pants or shorts.

    Follow the methods, work on getting your rythym, it will suddenly hit you one day and you will be surprised, before you know it, you will be the one new hires come to for advice.

    Always watch the wall in front of you, the rollers and the belts will not move, the wall will come crashing down on you and hurt you.
    You will get a feel for where the rollers and belts are, so you wont even have to look at the rollers or belts. If you place the packages squarely on the rollers or belt, you will most likely not jam up.

    Do NOT throw packages, you could be fired for this.

    IF A PACKAGE IS FALLING, DO NOT TRY TO CATCH IT. I have seen so many people get hurt while trying to catch a falling package. The contents can be replaced your health cannot.

    When you are within the last 5 to 10 minutes of the each feeder, be ready to brace yourself. A shifter will be hooking up to pull it off the wall, and they don't know what is happening on the inside of the feeder, be ready.

    Over 70s, if you cannot handle an over 70 package, get help, do not be a hero, if you cannot get help, leave it alone.

    I hope this helps.
  6. Susie Q

    Susie Q Guest

    What Article in your Contract contains Production Requirements such as PPH??? It is important not to set that sort of standard for yourself!!! Our P/T Sups are running around telling us we're behind - there is no such thing as behind. We are where we are as long as noone is standing around doing nothing. There is no requirement that you have to rush or run to do your job. If you set an extraordinary PPH one day, it is expected everyday - have a bad day and you're in the office!

    A feeder hooking up while you're still unloading??? You say safety first - that tractor isn't supposed to be hooking up while anyone is in it!!! UPS preaches safety, but if they're doing that, they aren't practicing it!

    Is anyone else noticing that UPS is phasing out irregulars and overweights? Nothing is handled the way we were trained, it comes down all the belts and falls off the belt nearly hitting the splitters! Not to mention smashing the boxes in the 90 degree bend in our belt.
  7. ducky13swing

    ducky13swing Member

    So Susie Q, referring to your statement, as long as you move one package every minute, then you feel you are doing a good job. Well this company has not been successful and provided you and 300,000 other people with a job by everyone handling one package per minute. There is a such thing as performance standards. If you can not physically handle the job and meet the standards. Then you don't need to be at UPS. PPH may not be in the contract, but how about an honest days pay for an honest days work. Oh yet we forget the second half of that phrase, and yes that IS in the contract. But I guess some people are more concerned with thumping the contract like a religious zealot thumps the Bible. Interpret to suit their needs, and throw the rest out.
    It is not in the contract to maintain a certain production standard, but it also does not state that you cannot stand around either so where do you get that information. Hell based on your theory, UPS should pay you to show up for work and stand around looking pretty. The contract does not state that you HAVE to actually work. Try it one day and see what happens. Then you can greive it to get your job back.
  8. Working4TheBene's

    Working4TheBene's New Member

    I agree with you ducky13swing. All too often, we take for granted all our jobs. Of course job security is important, but remember, we are there in the end to move packages from one place to another. We are all cogs in a much much larger wheel. And yes, even though it isn't written in any of the bylaws that we have to adhere to any PPH, standards have to be established (of course within reason). Otherwise, the customers might as well come and get their own packages. Unfortunately, so many people use the contract as a crutch when it benefits them. IF the shoe is reversed, I'm sure management could hold us to every single last detail in the contract and be even a bigger pain!

    Standards are developed for a reason. Think of it like school standards, whether talking about the grades or the quality of the school. I'm sure we would'nt want to have a school system where there are no testing standards and basically you can sail on by and it wouldn't matter if you learned anything or not.

    The bottom line is: Some people have higher standards than others, but that is where a compromise comes into play. It is extremely unfair to your fellow co-workers that some work harder to pick up the slack of those that simply just want to cruise on by.
  9. crzy4trucks

    crzy4trucks AM Preloader

    Yeah sorry I wasnt reading properly lol... too early to read
  10. tieguy

    tieguy Banned

    This is the kind of advice that gets people fired. We can argue the standards all we want but this guy is trying to make his seniority and he definitely has to prove himself by our pph standards.

    Best advice I have on the unload is minimize your trips out of the trailer. Each time you leave the trailer to pull an irreg or get toteboxes you lose a lot of productivity. Try to consolidate trips out of the trailer. Keep your feet planted and work at a steady pace. After a while you will learn to use your eyes to preselect the next package, your body will get used to the work and you will find that you can easily unload packages with them touching as they come out. Conditioning and practice make you good.

    I'm actually happy to hear you had a training sup spend that much time with you. I wish he had spent more time demonstrating the job to you especially the first 5 days.

    Sounds like you're doing well. Welcome to the brown family and good luck.
  11. Hmmm i'm being to wonder. A well typed message, by a new employee, in CACH!!! They have a sup with them for 5 straight days??? Is this a genuine post?
  12. Working4TheBene's

    Working4TheBene's New Member

    Good advice tieguy.

    For unloading, yo should grab some empty totes inside with you at the beginning befor you go into the trailer. At the center I am in, that is very important because our extendos only go up to the trailer door - it does not extend inside the trailer itself... we have to use rollers... And as you know, 53' trailers are a long walk to clear jams from smalls... so if you have at least 1 tote, you can consolidate.

    Also, it is important to eliminate as many trips back and forth with boxes in hand from the wall to the extendo (or roller). Stand still and with practice, you will know how much strength to use with each package in order to get it to the extendo or roller. By walking back and forth, you will find that you use up a lot of energy, and by the time you get to the last few walls, you will be pooped out!!!

    Leave over 70lbers and other such things until you've finished unloading the trailer otherwise you will waste your energy in the beginning.

    Hope this helps!
  13. BreakfastPirate

    BreakfastPirate New Member

    Thanks everyone for the input. I had a really bad day yesterday at work. I made the mistake of not eating enough before working. About two hours in I was feeling sick to my stomach and could barely move the packages. I'm surprised I was able to finish the day without vomiting, but I stuck it through.

    lol, on my MySpace you'll find a picture of my employee id card if you really need proof.
  14. Break,
    No insult intended my friend, things must be a LOT better there now...your work area had the rep of being the black hole of UPS...where packages enter only to never be seen again. Keep up the improvements!!!
  15. Air Hub

    Air Hub New Member

    I thought you had to be 18 years old to work for UPS?
    I think the earn to learn program is a great reason to work for UPS, but why not start the job next summer after high school?
  16. BreakfastPirate

    BreakfastPirate New Member

    No, it's still like that, trust me. I've thrown packages clear across the trailer in front of two sups and neither said anything about it. Packages are always falling and breaking open, and labels are put facing the belt all the time. The problem is the supervisors just care about getting the packages out, not how they get there. And if you were talking about theft, I can honestly say I wouldn't put it past most of the people I see working here.

    Mainly because they were the only company that would hire me that I wanted to work for, and I desperately needed a job. I was determined not to work in fast food or a grocery store, so my options were limited. Also, it's 17 to work for UPS, at least at CACH.
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2006