ABOUT TRUCKING IN SASKATCHEWAN
Truck transport plays a critical role in everyone’s lives – even if they do not know it. Every part of your life – from the fuel in your vehicle to the food in your fridge, was delivered by a truck. In our landlocked province, trucking make our imports and exports possible and employs roughly 5% of Saskatchewan’s population. Across Canada, trucking provides millions of jobs; there are thousands of trucking companies in Saskatchewan alone, hauling a variety of products from agriculture products to food and consumer goods like televisions, clothes and pet supplies.
Trucking and the Environment
Many people think of trucks from back in the day – barreling down the highway billowing black smoke, burning diesel like it’s their job – this is not the reality of trucking today. Truck emissions have been systematically and significantly reduced in recent years. Since 2010, trucks have virtually eliminate smog creating emissions from engines. Trucks now utilize cutting edge technology to track fuel consumption and adjust for efficiency. Fleets (trucking companies) have invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in driver education and after market additions to trucks that aid in reducing fuel consumption and lowering pollution.
Trucking and Safety
The Saskatchewan Trucking Association always says ‘All Roads Lead to Safety’, which means that safety is a consideration in every decision the industry makes. As one of the few industries that shares its workplace with the public, trucking understands the added responsibility our industry faces in keeping drivers and the motoring public safe. Contrary to some public perception, trucks are statistically the safest vehicles on the road. In 2018, Saskatchewan introduced Mandatory Entry Level Training for Class 1 licenses. This means that all drivers now complete a set curriculum developed by the industry and Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) to ensure new drivers are as skilled and educated as possible before they are given a license.
Trucking and the Economy
Saskatchewan has 26,250 km of highways, including 131 km of ice-road highways. That means Saskatchewan has the largest municipal road network in the country and the trucking industry utilizes it to get Saskatchewan-produced goods to market. From grain to crude oil, Saskatchewan’s export-heavy economy relies on truck transport. The trucking and warehouse sectors are one of the top occupations in Canada, employing hundreds of thousands of Canadians. 15% of Saskatchewan’s 1.1 million residents are directly employed by the trucking and warehousing industries. Without taking the drivers’ income tax into account, it is estimated that each truck on the road pays over $60,000 per year in taxes. Want more information on how trucking affects our economy? Check out the trucking fact sheet!
Descriptions of Trucking Careers in Saskatchewan
If you are thinking about a career in the trucking industry.
Below are examples of the types of career opportunities available in the trucking industry. This information aims to help you decide if a career in the trucking industry is right for you.
Understanding some details such as:
- the approximate salaries
- employment requirements
- education requirements
- and career succession.
Commercial Truck Driver/Commercial Vehicle Operator
Entry-level Truck Driver: Average salary, $18.27 per hour
Truck Driver: Average salary, $22.24 per hour
Long Haul: Average salary, $24.64 per hour
Estimated wage in Saskatchewan: $63,900-$86,000
Owner-operator: Average salary, $110,000 + per year
Truck drivers operate heavy vehicles that haul goods. Depending on the type of truck driver, travel may include urban, rural, provincial, national or even international - all over North America. Trucking companies are hired by customers including farmers, manufacturers, stores and restaurants to delivery goods. Every thing in your daily life was was delivered, at least in part, by a truck. From the food in your fridge to the the device you are reading this on was made available to you because of trucks.
- Long-Haul Truck Driver: Being a long distance driver mean that you drive outside of your city, province or even country. Long-haul truck drivers will plan trip logistics, obtain and upkeep required documentation, perform pre-trip, en route and post-trip inspections of the vehicle, ensure cargo is secure, obtain special permits to transport cargo on international routes and much more!
- Short-haul and local transport drivers: operates and drives primarily smaller sized trucks to transport goods and materials on local routes and short inter-urban routes (great if you want to be home every night), performs pre-trip, en route and post-trip inspections of the vehicle, and may drive special purpose trucks such as tow trucks, dump trucks, hydro-vac trucks or cement mixing trucks,
- Owner Operator: being an owner operator generally means that you own your own truck and hire your services out to a single or multiple companies. Being an owner operator is the most common first step in owning your own trucking company.
- Comprehension of the English language—written and spoken; to interpret documents, training manuals, legislation, etc.
- Pre-employment drug and alcohol screening and random drug testing throughout employment.
- Air Brake endorsement
- Clean criminal record check and drivers abstract
- Secondary (high) school certificate
- Class 1 A Driver’s License, or the Mandatory Entry-level Training (MELT) effective March 15, 2019 in Saskatchewan with a pre-requisite of a Class 1 Learner (Class 1 Endorsement)
Career Succession: Progression to supervisory positions or to non-driving occupations, such as driver trainer, safety officer or truck dispatcher is possible with additional training or experience. Succession in driving positions is also possible, with opportunities to haul fuel or other dangerous goods with earning potential reaching $170,000 + per year.
Dispatcher/ In Bound/Out Bound Freight Coordinator/Crew Dispatcher
$50,000 - $100,000 per year
Job Description: Dispatchers process and transmit information and instructions to coordinate the activities of Professional Drivers operating Class 1/A vehicles while transporting goods over urban, regional, provincial/territorial and international routes. They are employed by transportation companies, manufacturing and distribution companies, moving companies and employment service agencies. (In some companies, the dispatch function is shared between two or more individuals with the following job titles: Fleet Manager; Customer Service Representative; Planner; Trip Coordinator; Driver Manager; and Dispatcher)
- operate radios and other telecommunication equipment;
- dispatch personnel according to schedules and work orders;
- monitor personnel workloads and locations;
- maintain computer and manual records of mileage, fuel use and expenses;
- advise vehicle operators of route and traffic problems such as construction, accidents, etc.;
- coordinate activities of vehicle operators;
- Strong Communication Skills
- Attention to detail
- Proficiency in Microsoft Office programs: Word, Excel and Outlook
- Organizational skills
- Completion of secondary (high) school is required
$70,000 - $100,000
Job Description: Supervisors or Managers co-ordinate the activities of workers in the following unit group: Shippers and Receivers, Dispatchers and Transportation Route and Crew Schedulers.
- Provide leadership and direction to key departments: Operations, Safety, Training, and Compliance
- Plan, organize and oversee operational logistics of the organization, establish work schedules and procedures, resolve work-related issues, prepare and submit progress and other reports and co-ordinate activities with other supply-chain work units or departments
- Train workers in job duties, safety procedures and company policies
- Oversee the execution of fleet maintenance and regulatory compliance
- Maintain awareness of industry trends
- Experience in management
- Strong knowledge of transportation
- Organizational, analytical and problem-solving skills
- Excellent communication and leadership
- Knowledge of industry regulations and laws
- Proficiency in Microsoft Office
Safety & Compliance Professional
$50,000 - $105,492
Safety & Compliance managers are trucking companies are responsible for making sure the company and it's drivers operate compliance in accordance with safety regulations. Trucking companies have their own rules and regulations regarding safety in the workplace. Countries and provinces also have rules and regulations about what trucks can and cannot do. A Safety and Compliance Manager is expected to understand regulations from the Federal Motor Carriers Association (US), federal, provincial, state and company regulations as they pertain to the operations of the business. This position records and maintains driver violation and accident data, oversees new driver orientation, delivers safety instruction and provides ongoing training. Safety and Compliance Manager responsibilities may vary from company to company.
- Knowledge and understanding of regulations in the jurisdictions (often multiple) that trucking companies operate.
- Technical abilities to operate software and training platforms
- Class 1 license
- Leadership and communication skills
- Presentation skills (education)
- Computer use
- Solid judgment and discretion
- Problem solving and analytics skills
- Bachelor's Degree in Occupational Safety or equivalent such as Driver Safety Trainer Program
- Minimum 3-5 years experience in safety management
- Professional driving experience
$17.00 - $18.00 dollars per hour
Job Description: Dock workers are responsible for loading and unloading freight onto trucks and trailers using various types of equipment, such as forklifts, dollies, carts, or manual handling in a safe and efficient manner. Dock workers are employed by transportation companies, manufacturing and distribution companies and moving companies.
- Loading, unloading and moving products and materials
- operate industrial trucks, tractors, loaders and other equipment to transport materials to and from transportation vehicles and loading docks and to store and retrieve materials.
- Ensure accuracy of all in-bound and out-bound freight
- Some secondary school education may be required
- Physical strength is required for manual material handlers who work with heavy materials.
$52,000 - $55,000 per year
Job Description: the office administrator oversees and co-ordinates office administrative procedures; Review, evaluate and implement new administrative procedures; Establish work priorities and ensure procedures are followed and deadlines are met; Assemble data and prepare periodic and special reports, manuals and correspondence
- Oversee and co-ordinate office administrative procedures
- Establish work priorities and ensure procedures are followed
- Use of computer equipment
- Mail handling
- Answering phones and relaying telephone calls
- High quality interpersonal skills
- Ability to work in a team environment
- Detail oriented
- Excellent computer skills; proficiency with Microsoft Word, Excel
- Strong organizational and time management skills
- Completion of Secondary (high) school is required
$32.00 - $42.00 per hour
Maintenance, repairs and diagnosis of trucks, trailers, and forklift including hydraulic and electrical systems. As well as knowledge and involvement in disassembling and re-assembling components of heavy equipment. Other responsiiblities might include: cleaning/maintaining equipment; interpreting work orders and manuals; writing service reports
Repair of diesel engines, airbrakes, power train, transmissions, fuel systems, cooling systems, steering electrical, suspension systems, welding tasks, as well as preventative maintenance tasks including oil changes and grease jobs
interpersonal skills, written and communication skills; possibly a class 2b license with air brake endorsement.
Mechanical experience is preferred; another possible requirement is a trade certificate and class 5 drivers license.
Kate Pendragon - Operations Manager
Kate has worked in the trucking industry for ten years, starting out in the Accounts Receivable department at a heavy haul company and has been moving up ever since.
"My favorite thing about working in the trucking industry is that every day is different. There is always a new challenge that presents itself that you need to work on and flex your brain to solve. A common misconception abut the trucking industry is that trucking companies lack good business practices."
Konner Siemens - Logistics Coordinator
Konner is a logistics coordinator with Edge Transportation - a part of the Siemens Transportation Group. As the third generation to be involved in the family business, Konner grew up in the trucking industry and considers his father, Tom Siemens, a mentor.
"For me, the trucking industry has provided me with countless opportunities. I have had the opportunity to learn and grow. I would encourage people not to have a negative perception about the trucking industry, there is a niche position for anyone who wants to work in the industry."
Jordan Ewart - Policy Analyst, Saskatchewan Trucking Association
Deleted: Jordan is a recent entrant to the trucking industry, starting in his position with the Saskatchewan Trucking Association in early 2019. With a background in International Policy, the trucking industry is not exactly where Jordan expected to find himself, but he is glad he did.
"Trucking is a professional industry with a passionate group of people working in it. Often, I find that trucking is looked at as a last resort career or a meaningless career. I’ve done more meaningful work in seven months than I have in the past five years. I think that if young people are passionate, thoughtful and want to make a difference—that there is a place for them in the trucking industry. Trucking has a bright future with technology leading the way. The industry is evolving and my short experience in it tells me that there is room for everyone"
Jessica Reid - Logistics Coordinator
Jessica is a logistics coordinator for the operations department at Aero Delivery. Jessica's father was a truck driver. She entered the industry as a Customer Service Representative and has been in the industry for 8 years. Jessica cites constant learning and no two days being the same as contributors to her love of her work.
"I think young people fit into the industry as our future. As drivers get older and retire, we need to bring in new drivers, we need to bring young people into our offices. It gives you a different point of view on safety and how to do the job. I think technology is going to play a huge role."
Don Wolfe - Truck Driver
Don is a company driver with Custom Courier in Saskatoon. Don has been involved in the trucking industry since 1977, starting out in a cube van and moving onto bigger vehicles.
"Trucking is a decent way to provide for my family, and it's great meeting lots of different people in different sectors," says Don. "Safety first. Check your equipment before and after deliveries, checking weather to make sure highways and roads are safe."