Central Oregon Truck Company (COTC), a Daseke company, has announced a new pay structure called “Weekly Driver Salary Pay.”
According to Rick Williams, CEO of COTC, the new program puts the company at the top of the pay scale for drivers.
“Our program gives new drivers a $65,000 a year base, while our experienced drivers can now make more than $90,000 a year – some can push $100,000,” Williams said. “What’s more, we guarantee at least 2,430 miles per week with a minimum salary of $1,250, so drivers know their gross check amount – it gives them certainty. Again, that’s minimum, and for drivers who want more home or rest time, this provides a stable living wage. But, for other drivers who want to run more miles, this program is great too. If a driver runs 3,000 miles for the week, that salary would increase to $1,575 – escalating up to $2,000 a week for solo drivers.”
“The goal was to simplify so that a driver would know exactly what his or her check would be each week the minute the payroll cut-off hit,” Williams continued. “Now, all our drivers have to do is track their miles. Overall, this means a $10,000 to $15,000 a-year jump for our drivers. We also offer ‘loyalty pay,’ which is an additional one to three cents per mile driven.”
The company, which has been exclusively a flatbed carrier since 1992, has also started a team pay program. Team drivers can earn between $2,350 and $3,345 gross each week, for an annual salary between $122,000 to $173,000.
“I absolutely believe what we are doing is a game changer for the industry,” Williams said. “In all honesty, I don’t believe just any company could pay at these levels, they have to be very efficient companies to be able to afford this type of program.”
As a former driver, Williams has been watching a fundamental change in driver salary.
“And it’s all been for the good,” he said. “Drivers on the road have always deserved more money but past market conditions have held wages down. But, now the market is changing. The reality is shippers need to pay enough to support a quality wage for drivers and their families. It’s starting to happen, and at COTC we want to lead the way.”