The sound of the wheels on the road, the creaks and gusts of pistons turning. A woosh of air as the truck comes to a screeching halt.
These are the sounds of the road, the kind that truckers love. But where would you start a trucking career?
One state comes to mind: Missouri.
How to Become a Truck Driver in MO
Becoming a truck driver in Missouri is very similar to becoming a truck driver anywhere else in the United States. You must acquire a commercial driver's license, or a CDL, to start your career on the open road. But how do you go about getting that CDL? How do you get a CDL in Missouri in specific? Well, it's quite simple.
1. Review the Missouri CDL Requirements
For the truckers out there who like a good read, check out the manual of requirements for becoming a CDL driver in Missouri. Here are the highlights. To become a truck driver in Missouri, you must:
- At least 18 years of age
- Hold a Missouri based driver's license
- Pass a series of tests
2. Prepare For and Take the Written Tests
The aforementioned tests include written/general knowledge tests, road sign tests, and vision tests. If you meet all those requirements, then you can obtain a CDL permit. The permit allows future truckers to drive with those who have a full CDL.
3. Take the Road Test
There are three parts to the road test: pre-trip inspection test, basic control skills test, and driving test. Once you pass those, you can get your CDL and become a trucker!
What Makes Missouri a Great Place to Start a Trucking Career?
You may think it doesn't matter where they start a trucking career, but it does. Missouri is probably one of the best places in the United States (or heck, even the world) to start a career in trucking, and here's why:
1. Truckers Deliver Many Goods to So Many People in the State
Future truckers who want to feel like they matter to a community will have no trouble finding meaning in Missouri. According to the Missouri Trucking Association, 73% of Missouri communities depend exclusively on trucks to move their goods. Every day a trucker in Missouri goes to work, they can take solace in knowing they are helping their community.
2. Missouri Trucking Association
Speaking of the MTA, they are a great reason to join the trucking force in Missouri, and it would be wise for truckers to join their organization, too. They are like the NRA for Missouri truckers– in the ear of congress to ensure they get what's fair!
3. Lots of Opportunities
Not only did Missouri rank 11th in the country for opportunity, but they did not shut down their trucking in the wake of COVID-19. So truckers know they'll have work!
Review of the Best Trucking Companies In Missouri
And now, without further ado, the best Missouri Trucking Companies:
1. Waller Truck Co. Inc.
- Address: 400 S. McCleary Road Excelsior Springs, MO
- Website: https://www.wallertruck.com/
- Phone Number: (816) 629-3400
- Email: email@example.com
Who is Waller Truck Company?
One Jack Waller is the man who started up the Waller Truck Co back in 1959. He worked hard over the years, and now the Waller Truck company is one of the premier haulers of industrial supplies, automotive, hardware, building products, pasta, flour, pet food, and much more in the state.
If it can be hauled, there's a good chance that the Waller Truck Company will haul it because that's what they do. Waller also offers a litany of other services, including logistics. Plus, since it also is in the shipping business, it provides shuttling and brokerage service to those who require it.
Jobs Offered by Waller Truck Co
It may be obvious, but a lot of the jobs offered by the Waller Truck Company are, in fact, trucking jobs. However, there are many different options for those who want to be a trucker at the Waller Truck Company.
There are local and regional drivers who often get to go home every night, and company drivers, who go home weekly. Then there are even owner-driver and lease operator programs offered by the company!
Salary and Benefits Waller Truck Co
According to recent employees, the average salary ranges from $37,144 per year for a driver to $68,993 per year for a regional driver. Things may change based on experience, but that is the average we were able to find.
And the upwards number for regional drivers is more than the average in Missouri, which is exciting! However, there have been some complaints about management playing favorites from ex-employees.
- Address: 1601 W. Old Route 66 Strafford, MO
- Website: http://www.drivetransland.com/
- Phone Number: 800.234.5710
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Who is TransLand?
This trucking company was founded by Glen and Anna Walker out of Springfield, under its original and much more wordy name: Terminal Consolidation of Springfield. The business grew over the years, and they even won some awards, including the ever illustrious First Springfield Chamber of Commerce Small Business of the Year. In 2014, they rebranded to become the trucking company we know and love today: TransLand.
These guys do a lot in the trucking industry– dry van services for the long-haul and short-haul trucking divisions, as well as some flatbeds delivering things like steel coils, lumber, and machinery to various companies.
Jobs Offered by TransLand
Many jobs are offered to those who wish to drive TransLand, and most of them involve trucking. All, of course, require someone to have CDL as most trucking jobs do.
However, there are a lot of options once you get a CDL. The first being the company driver, then there are regional drivers. Then some drive flatbeds, and finally, there are the drivers who specialize in dry vans. There are many different options at TransLand. Load coordinator and director of maintenance are also options.
TransLand Salary and Benefits
The salaries are pretty decent over at TransLand. Long Haul truckers, for starters, can find themselves making up to $38,000-$41,000 a year. Not the highest number for truckers on this list, but still fairly decent. Load coordinators make a little bit more, ranging from $50,000-$51,000 a year.
As for benefits, they offer paid vacation and some pretty decent health insurance that includes dental, vision, and life. All in all, TransLand is a decent place to work, says the average TransLand ex-employee.
3. Christenson Transportation Inc.
- Address: 2301 West Old Route 66, Strafford, MO
- Website: http://christensontrans.com/
- Phone Number: 417-866-5993
- Email: email@example.com
Who is Christenson Transportation?
It all started as a brokerage firm. Gene Christenson, the founder of Christenson Transportation, founded the very firm that became the widely known transportation company back in 1979. Since then, the company has grown so much.
Ever since the year 1995, they have expanded to truck lines, now operating in 48 states. They are no stranger to awards either, winning the Truckload Carriers Association Safety Award three times and receiving the Platinum Fleet Award for Outstanding Achievement in Highway Traffic Safety. These guys pretty much do everything that can be done in the trucking industry, even going as far as to haul high value, time-sensitive products.
Jobs Offered by Christenson Transportation
This company is one of the most prolific in all of Missouri. They are hiring all over the state. As for who they hire, it seems they'll bring onto staff any trucker they can get their hands on.
There are company drivers, there are owner-operators, there are OTR drivers for a fleet dedicated strictly to Pennsylvania. They even have a lease to purchase program for drivers wanting to get their vehicle.
Christenson Transportation Salary and Benefits
There is so much information about the salaries of the people at Christenson Transportation, and it's all good news for prospective employees. $54,000 to $58,000 was the average for regional truck drivers, which is a great salary for anyone, let alone truck drivers.
Also, for those who don't want to be a trucker, you can become Operations Supervisors and Management Analysts, who make about $41,000 a year. Not as much as the truckers, but less driving as well.
4. Steelman Transportation
- Address: 2160 N. Burton Ave Springfield, MO
- Website: https://www.steelmantransport.com/
- Phone Number: 800-488-6287
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Who is Steelman Transportation?
It has been a long 25 years for Steelman Transportation, but they have gotten through everything that's been thrown at them. Through thick and thin, this trucking company has pulled through and is now one of the top trucking companies in the state of Missouri.
These guys have perfected the art of trucking. They haul pretty much anything that's thrown at them (or, probably more likely, given to them via contract), including but not limited to building materials like pipe, tubing, metal coils, metal plates, roofing, vinyl siding, and lumber. But it doesn't stop there, they also haul things like building equipment and air conditioners!
Jobs Offered by Steelman Transportation
There are a couple of options for anyone who wants to join up with the Steelman Transportation crew. First off is the owner-operator position, which would have drivers driving in their own vehicles should they own one.
You could also find yourself working as a Director of Safety & HR, which would be for those who are less inclined to drive. Each of these has reported overwhelmingly that the management at Steelman Transportation is one of the best in the business.
Steelman Transportation Salary and Benefits
We found information about three salaries when we were doing our research into Steelman. The first was for the truck driver position (the truck drivers that work for the company itself, not the ones who own their own vehicles). They made about $1,318 per week at Steelman. The owner-operators tended to be in a much better position, pulling in over $200,000 a year. As for directors of Safety and HR, they pulled in around $70,000 per year.
5. Affton Trucking
- Address: 420 Gimblin Road, Saint Louis, MO
- Website: http://www.afftontrucking.com/
- Phone Number: (314) 388-9700
- Email: email@example.com
Who is Affton Trucking?
Many trucking companies will usually branch out from their family roots, going from small family-owned companies to big trucking conglomerates. Not Affton trucking. They still have the same owners they had in 1969, the Wright family. While the family-owned company feel is certainly there, a lot has changed when it comes to what kind of jobs they offer the public.
Bulk trucking, packaging, and warehousing, then, of course, there's transloading as well. But the bread and butter of Affton trucking, according to their website, will always be intermodal trucking. They have perfected that.
Jobs Offered by Affton Trucking
Three jobs appear when looking into the jobs at Affton trucking– the first being a driver. And we can honestly say the reviews from ex and current employees have been mostly positive.
Everyone loves the job security at Affton (for the drivers at least) and they say it's a pretty decent place to work. As for the other two, Affton has jobs for those who wish to work as Diesel mechanics and warehouse people as well.
Affton Trucking Salary and Benefits
After some extensive research, we have discovered that seasoned truckers at Affton often make around $41,000 to $45,000 a year. However, they also tend to hire experienced drivers on the spot.
As for benefits, they offer health insurance, which includes dental and vision, more than a lot of other trucking companies out there. Bottom line– truckers who want to work hard and get paid decently for that work should join with Affton.
Job Outlook and Salary for Truck Driving in Missouri
Let's begin with the good news: there are many opportunities to become a truck driver in Missouri. They never shut down their businesses for COVID, so there was always work for the average truck driver. If you can find a good company to join, there's a good chance that person will not only have a job for a while but won't get any breaks from that job (even if there's a global pandemic).
Here's the real issue with truck driving in Missouri, while there are many opportunities, the average truck driver makes below the national average in terms of pay. $56,511 per year is the data collected on the driver's average salary, which is 7% below the national average.
But there is some more good news! There are many benefits for a truck driver, including a 401K, paid vacation, fuel discounts, and stock options! They also have many referral programs in the Missouri trucking industry, so friends of truckers who want to join the business will often be helping their trucker buddies out!
Being a Missouri trucker isn't for the lazy, but it's worth the time.
Where Are The Best Paying Trucking Jobs in Missouri?
Missouri in general is a great place to start a trucking career, but which place is the best? Well, here are some of the best cities in the state to begin a trucking career:
Average Salary: $72,030
This average salary is 9% higher than the national average and a whole $15,519 higher than the Missouri average. Why is this city's price so high? Probably because there is a big concentration of trucking companies in the city, due to its proximity to populous city centers.
These trucking companies most likely have to compete with each other for potential future employees, driving up their price and driving up a trucker's annual pay.
Average Salary: $68,483
While it may not be as impressive as Joplin's average, it's still higher than the Missouri average. However, things have been looking more and more up for Bridgeton in modern times. There are reports that the city is facing a great economic upturn, which means the average annual salary for truckers in the city could only go up!
Average Salary: $68,221
The birthplace of Route 66, Springfield is a great place for someone to start a trucking career. Check out that annual salary!
And so, the end of the road has arrived. We gave you a lot of information about the great state of Missouri and its trucking industry, including who are the best companies to work for in the state and where is the best place in the state to work. All that's left is to start!
People Also Ask
Now, let's look at some of the frequently asked questions of the Missouri trucking audience.
What is the Average Profit Margin for a Trucking Company?
There has been a rise in profit margins for trucking companies in the last couple of years. While the first half of the 21st century saw profit margins in the 2.4%-4% range, these days, it's around 6%! Great time to start a trucking company.
How Do Trucking Companies Maximize Profit?
There are many ways trucking companies maximize profit, but it comes down to two things: planning and fuel. They plan routes to use the least amount of fuel possible or to be the most efficient. Our advice: take advantage of potential fuel discounts.
What Trucking Companies Have Their Own CDL Schools in Springfield, MO?
After extensive research through the trucking companies in Springfield, Missouri, we have found that Wilson Logistics is one that will at the very least pay truckers to get their CDL. Trailiner Corporation is one that also might, and besides that, we aren't so sure.
Which Trucking Companies in MO Hire Felons?
Prime, out of Springfield, Missouri, reportedly hires felons. Not just felons, either, they go as far as to hire recent felons! These people are willing to take a chance on felons if they are willing to work hard and hold the line for them.