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A man holding a CDL while standing in front of a blue truck May 23, 2022 - BY EagleLogistics LLC

What Is Entry Level Driver Training and Who Needs It?

We know a guy that went through a Taco Bell drive thru the other day. He hadn’t eaten lunch or dinner and it was late. So he ordered a big meal, waited in line, got the bag from the young worker at the window, drove home and opened the bag. Surprise! It was about 25 mild sauces and nothing else. That’s right, not even a hot sauce. There are conclusions we could reach here. Should he have gone back and calmly asked if he might’nt get his food in exchange for the sauces? Should he have called the manager and threatened to deploy all 15 of his Twitter followers to leave bad reviews online? Who knows. But the conclusion we came to was that employers are having a really hard time finding competent workers for entry level positions. We bring this up only to contrast it with what is going on in the trucking world. Unlike the mistake of getting a meal made of only mild sauces, trucking mistakes are much more severe, and they should and do require drivers to be extremely competent even at entry level positions


In fact, as of February 2022, entry level drivers must take a course before they can even take the CDL written test, skills test, or endorsements tests. Again, we’re not talking about taco sauces, we’re trying to avoid some of the approximated 4,000 accidents with large trucks that take place each year. 

Who Has to Take the Training?

Anyone looking to:

  • Obtain a CDL license

  • Upgrade a CDL

  • Add passenger or hazmat endorsements

What Does the Training Include?

The training courses have many components:  

  • Control systems and instruments

  • General truck operation

  • Laws, guidelines, and documentation

  • Skills like backing, docking, coupling, skid control, and other necessary operational practices

  • Pre-trip and Post-trip inspections

  • Other inspections

  • Driving time management

  • Strategies to avoid distracted driving or other dangerous factors

  • Protocols and protections for whistleblower actions

  • Orientation

  • Managing speed, space, night, and hazardous driving conditions

  • Maintenance

  • Documentation and compliance

  • Trip Planning

  • Communications

  • More


Now, before you get scared away, you should know that almost all of the entry level training programs are standardized and effective, with a proven methodology and curriculum. So, you’re in good hands. The trainers know how to get you ready and care enough to make sure you pass. Plus, about 85 percent of those in the entry level training programs walk in having already met the requirements through truck driving school


If you go back a few months, we have a blog talking about what a great need there is for truck drivers.  This means a few things for you. 


  1. If you jump through the hoops and get your CDL, you will have a near-certain opportunity to work, and with good pay. 


  1. The government, entry level training programs, and employers all have a keen interest in helping you succeed. You won’t be on your own and no one is playing gotcha.


  1. We need you! You will have a very secure, essential job with companies (some) that value you and will treat you well.


Now… (insert shameless plug) if you want a company that always values its drivers, even entry level drivers, and always wants what is best for them personally and not just what affects the bottom line, we would argue that you’ll have a hard time beating Eagle Logistics. Because we’re smaller than many companies, we can simply do things they can’t - like remember your name and care about how you’re doing. If you have a desire to work for a company like that, contact us! We’re more than eager to talk to you.