This week on the Oakley Podcast, host Jeremy Kellett chats with Shane Smith & Nick Crisco, Operations Managers at Oakley Trucking. During the episode, the group gives an update as to the freight operations throughout 2023. Shane and Nick also discuss various topics such as the importance of communication, customer service, maximizing load weight for profitability, and more.
Highlights from this week’s conversation include:
- Oakley Update: Passenger Authorization (2:50)
- Evaluation of freight in 2023 (8:04)
- Loads Oakley handles per week (12:41)
- The need for hauling maximum allowable weight (14:31)
- The need for communication across operations (23:06)
- Preventing service failures and maximizing earnings (30:44)
- Customer service and communication (36:35)
- Thanking our owner-operators (41:42)
- Improving dispatch communication procedures (45:20)
Oakley Trucking is a family-owned and operated trucking company headquartered in North Little Rock, Arkansas. For more information, check out our show website: podcast.bruceoakley.com.
Shane Smith 00:12
We strive to be the best and to be the best out there. And the owner operators that we have got us there are not all these folks in this office. I mean, everybody has to do a part. But the people out there in front of so many customers that we do, we’d never say it’s every one of the owner operators just see them. That’s the face of Oakley truck and that takes care of it. They say
Jeremy Kellett 00:36
Welcome to the Oakley podcast, trucking, business and family. This show is brought to you by Oakley trucking headquartered in North Little Rock, Arkansas. The purpose of this podcast is to communicate with Oakley owner operators and their families by giving them up to date information concerning Oakley trucking and the trucking industry. From business advice to safety updates to success stories. Also to give an insight to outside truck drivers who might be interested in joining the Oakley family. There’s Jeremy kellett director recruiting here at Oakley trucking and I’m your host for this podcast. This is the Oakley podcast, trucking, business and family. And we are glad to bring you some good information. Every Wednesday we have a new episode that comes out so we appreciate you guys checking it out and following us and this week is no different. I hadn’t done one in a while on freight in house. What’s going on at Oakley talking to the operation managers trying to get a you know, their thumb is on the pulse of how freight is happening. And what we’re doing every day every week. Get a little look at maybe what you know we’re halfway here through 2023. So we kind of get a look from them or what’s going on the first half and might be what to expect the second half. So we’re going to talk to Nick Crisco and Shang smear. They’ve been nice enough to sit down with me in the middle of their hectic afternoon and talk about some of this stuff because we’re also going to cover just a few things. And not to get too deep but communication is very critical. Customer service is really critical. And then we’re gonna hit a nerve with you about hauling the weight. What’s been a little topic here lately, so we’ll talk about that too. But first, let’s do an Oakley update sponsored by Arrow Truck Sales.
Jeremy Kellett 02:50
So Oakley update, right now there’s a lot of I was talking to JP from safety. And right now there’s a lot of people taking routers with them. You know, most of them kids out of school, taking them with them for the summer and JP was always talking about and he needs a day’s notice . You’ve got to get the passenger authorization form filled out before you get them in the truck. Don’t get them in the truck, whoever your passenger is for a day or two and then call for the authorization form we need ahead of time before they get in the truck. It’s basically we can email it to your DocuSign you sign or DocuSign email and you’re good to go. We can fax it to you if you’re in the area come into the office and get it. Its minimum age is seven years old. Up you can only have one passenger in the truck at a time. If you have a couple kids or your wife rides with you just one at a time can do it but you need to have an authorization form for each person. And it is $11 a month for each person. So make sure and get with safety on that and give them a heads up if you want to take somebody right in with you this summer.
Shane Smith 04:02
Okay, spin off real quick. I know you’re talking about the passenger ride but it’s also good to let dispatch know when you get kids riding along with the summer months going on there too. So we do have a few facilities, not many but a few facilities. Where can have non CDL passengers a good point be a good thing make sure dispatch knows on that. update them so we can work with it. You know when we’re in a short timeframe like that a week or whatever they’re doing, ride along. That’s how to get kids to run around with dads. Customers that won’t allow passengers to go when right. Good point.
Jeremy Kellett 04:38
I need to know that for sure. Okay, well, shiny starts it off. Then I got Shane Smith with me. Nick Crisco. Also, These guys have been on here before it’s been a while probably but just a quick shine. who you are. Where are you from? How long have you been at Oakley?
Shane Smith 04:54
Shane Smith. Been here at Oakley trucking just a little over 20 For years, work dispatch worked Kirti for a while back at dispatch and operation side of it. Scheduling, booking freight trying to coordinate and keep up with customer service. Good deal. We had a family and got a wife. We just celebrated 20 years here, just about three weeks ago. I went through two kids who are going to be seniors this year. And the baby girl just turned 16 here last week. And he’s about 20 something. Yeah. He’s got two drivers trying to figure out how to shuffle cars in the driveway now with a full family for their will. How about you Nick?
Nick Crisco 05:42
Nick Crisco Operations Manager on the dump side. I’ve been here for about 15 and a half years. The Fleet Manager managed trucks for about 10 years. I’ve been doing this since the beginning of 2018. I have two boys that are nine and two. They’re actually birthdays or this weekend, both of them. So we’ve got to know what you’re doing this weekend. Yeah. Yep. So we’ve got a different set of obstacles and challenges dealing with but yeah, how long have you been married? 11 years.
Jeremy Kellett 06:20
Come on. Oh, coming on? Well, and, you know, I guess to tell our listeners, I mean, these guys are both heavily in the dumps. And at the end dump freight. Basically, because today, I sent out an email trying to get some volunteers with Operation guys to get up here with me. And they were the two of the volunteers who did it both to dump. So we’ll get to pneumatics, maybe another episode, or hoppers to talk a little bit more about it, but it kind of all goes together. You bet. I mean, it all, you know, hauling a lot of the same for it. So a lot of it really when you talk about one of them. It covers pretty much all of them. And we’ve got you know, 875 owner operators now probably what 450 hinders? How many don’t push for 30? Yeah, yeah. And then 200 tanks, and then whatever, just left by the hoppers too. So yeah, yeah, get a fleet. So the majority of it is, you know, how dumps are twice the size? Because about half everything else? Yeah, half the company. So it’s all good, man. So let’s just get right to it and talk about some freight. I mean, here we are. Midway in 2023. I will go on out there and say we’ve probably had a better year than we thought back in January of 2023. We’re going oh, my gosh, what is this year going to be? Like? Because we came off of a great year last year. And I’m not just talking about company wise, I’m talking about owner operator wise to so what you guys, I mean, evaluation of so far in 2023 that we’re doing now.
Nick Crisco 08:04
We’re definitely seeing some competition out there coming in as far as price wise, you know, it’s getting while it’s still very busy, like you said was last year, really the last two years 21 and 22. We’re still busy, I would say. But there has seemed to be a little settling in the market, I guess, post COVID couple years, you know, when it was just crazy. industry wide, not just us, you know, every trucking company or a lot of from what you’d gather. And some of that seems to have settled, we read things and hear things and talk to customers about just kind of rates and made some settling there and competition, but we’re staying very busy. I mean, it’s not if a guy’s having to wait for a load, it’s it shouldn’t be too long, you know, I mean, we’re clipping along pretty good. There may be an hour or two here and there are some things that change and we have to piece something together. But for the most part, I mean wait times and unload and go into the next load are still very smooth. We visited Shane and I actually visited some customers up in Ohio a couple of weeks ago and we had you know, that’s what we asked him just kind of what their pulse was on what’s the rest of the year look like etc I’ve got pretty positive feedback from all of them saying they don’t see a slowing down they see it being pretty steady the rest of the year. Their orders are already placed out you know and just kind of like to feel the amount and ask that I do you know, that’s kind of see if it’s what they say and you know, it’s gloom and doom.
Jeremy Kellett 09:50
They believe the news or debt clock us we just keep working positive.
Nick Crisco 09:53
The ones that we talked to seemed to be.it would just continue on to kind of as has been, you know, some of our big customers that were encouraging Yes. Or yeah, bigger customers.
Shane Smith 10:07
So it’s funny the question you come about, I think the last time I did a podcast was on that, you know, after we’d come through, finished up a big year gone through, trying to predict the future. And I think I was trying to be a forecaster or be very optimistic at the time because things hadn’t slowed down. But you know, it’s, what goes up must come down with that type of attitude at the time, and six months later, if this is down, it’s good, it’s good, it is good. It is busy, we get a lot of calls, still there is a lot of demand out there. For a lot of people. There has been some competition side, you know, sort of settling of the market on that.
Jeremy Kellett 10:55
Competition, just people cutting the rates.
Shane Smith 10:58
Dropping calls, getting inquiry on price, and somebody else is going into it. So either they’ve had something led up and getting into something else, or felt a little crunch, and cut some pricing here and there. But you know, that’s the market. That’s the game you need. Geryon. So I
Jeremy Kellett 11:17
mean, we’ve had these conversations for 1525 Plus, I mean, we’ve had them for a long time, going up and down. But it’s really, I know, it’s scary when it’s good, because you’re just waiting for the letdown, but I ride it while we can. But you got to enjoy a good one. You got to enjoy a good you can’t you cannot be making yourself miserable because at some point, it’s gonna go away. Well, that’s something you forget to enjoy while it’s good. We get to enjoy while as good as right.
Shane Smith 11:51
That is right.
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Jeremy Kellett 12:41
Put a note down here to put it in perspective of how many loads we do it on a weekly or monthly basis? Did you guys have a chance to look?
Nick Crisco 12:49
Did you know over the last, just us kind of the last six weeks snapshot we’re as total company we’re averaging about 2900 loads a week that’s company wide and 1400 a week. So on the dump site. And so that kind of ties in line with our truck numbers, you know, saying about half dumps and 2900 a week, total company.
Jeremy Kellett 13:12
So it’s a lot of load. It’s a lot, a lot of owner operators, loading the wagon, unloading it and picking up another one. Yeah,
Shane Smith 13:21
dubs looking at same thing in the numbers where I was coming up, same thing you know, and see in his high depending on where you got barges going on, it works into that count in that view, but you know, seeing highs of 33 and some change maybe in there, you know, at times. Yeah. Yeah, around that. 20 a
Jeremy Kellett 13:40
Lot of loads being hauled.
Shane Smith 13:42
Every week, every week.
Nick Crisco 13:44
Every week. Yeah, it’s kind of hard to wrap your head around. How many? How many that really is, you know, it’s a lot in parts.
Jeremy Kellett 13:53
Roughly so we get upset when something goes wrong, you know, because we’re gonna have that, but we kind of got to put it in perspective. You know, when you’re doing 2900 loads a week, you’re gonna have one go wrong, something went bad as you hate it, you know, right. But something that will screw up for sure. Which, okay, so talking about loads per week. Let’s just go straight into the hard part here about hauling the weight because I’ve had a few calls from owner operators going, Hey, what’s going on? All of a sudden I’m getting
Shane Smith 14:31
I was wondering why that question comes up where you come up with.
Jeremy Kellett 14:35
I thought I’d just get it out there. Let’s just get it out. But you know, I had a couple of calls about that because we’ve talked about it in meetings and stuff and here lately has been a little topic of we can’t it’s our own fault, you know of letting it slide let not haul in the weight. On the loads that we can we know not everyone can but the ones that we can and need to be. So I think it’s just to our owner operators out there that are all sudden been doing all this for a long time and all sudden we’re changing it of hey, we need you to go back and get some more, that’s not enough when it has been okay in the past, it’s just a thing. I mean, I want you all to explain it more than me. But to me, I mean, it’s just the thing that we emphasize right now and are trying to do a better job about it, y’all want to elaborate a little bit on that.
Shane Smith 15:27
We’ll just like you said, you know, when we’re we’re trying to get better on it. On that side of it also was talking about it not, hey, go back and get some more on but talking to our guys and communicate with during dispatch of what expectations are what you know, what our needs are getting a load on, when you go into having a lot of conversations, same as you talking to guys, we are preaching it. You know, we’re a bulk hauling company, you know, so what we do, majority of the time is by the ton. You know, we do have some flat rates that go along and Everett majority of stuff is by the ton. So you know, you’re billing it out, you know, you’ve got X number of dollars a ton, and it goes through there. And all right, here’s how much money you can make off the load and driver is the operator is out there running so many 80 miles, so many loaded miles. And that equates to a specific dollar amount for however much is loaded and empty, you know, when that cost is fixed, you know, when it doesn’t get there. So it’s here. So you know, in order for us, especially in more competitive times, but always any money that’s at or any weight that is hauled there generates more money, you know, and that’s what we push for. We’re a bolt calling company and we get paid by the time so we try to generate more money and like we’ve talked about before and how it comes across in bonuses, you know, we pay an annual bonus every year, you know, that increases a penny every year that it comes along. I mean, that’s generated through what we do, how we’re making money, or whether we’re not making money, that’s where bonuses are generated. And so going back, you know, trying on our side, trying to preach it up front and go in. And so when we go into a customer, what we’re looking for and asking for is going into a customer, you hit the scale, you get a lightweight when you pull across at scale, you know when if you’re whatever the number is, if you’re 31,000 you know, some of these jobs, hoppers go into 29 You know, everybody’s different. Every truck is different, every division is different, but you get a lighter weight than what we’re shooting for on gross is, you know, we’re trying to reach 80,000 pounds, no, you’re not gonna get 80,000. But trying to get towards the top of that goal, because we want to just strive to do our best, we know we’re gonna work at our dead level best. And here. We won’t try to work at our dead level best out there. Keep generating profits. It’s the way that we’ve always talked about it here. When we generate more money, everybody gets more money.
Nick Crisco 18:16
Yeah, man, he’s spot on. I can’t, I mean, add a whole lot more than what he said. The emphasis, like he said, is we’re trying to get more proactive on the front end, you know, it’s not by design to come back after he said, Because he know the difficulties of going in and load and and calling me like, no, I need you to go get more I mean, no, that is very inconvenient and difficult. Trying to keep it on the forefront of everybody’s mind, like, you know, when you’re going into load, try to get us a good load on because there are, there’s a big trickle down effect to that, you know, how we pay what we pay how we, you know, how we do what we do, you know, when you’re going right back talking about 29 130 300 loads a week. Now, obviously, not all of those are per time, but more often than not for certain, you know, when you start adding an extra 500,000 pounds and putting a pencil to it, it’s uh, it’s eye opening, you know, so this batch, you know, ideally needs to be talking about that on the front end. There are obviously examples that are 22 ton orders, or maybe a special order of 15 tonne or a load of scrap, you know, like you said, loads that you can and can’t get the weight on there. Sure. But there’s a number of them that are and we really started looking into it and just like she’s just been going on for 20 minutes, you know, but you really start looking into it and you know, it’s just it’s a point of emphasis that we’re trying to drive home the right way without making it as difficult on the guy as extra actually loading the trailer, you know, so
Shane Smith 20:06
and like you said on, you know, you’re getting some calls competing yet communication on it. And it has been a bigger promotion or a bigger focus on our side and through our meetings, you know how things go in cycles, you know, we loosen up here, or we need to tie it in, let me know, we’re doing that. But you know, as far as a good response, we’re getting calls back on our side of it too. With owner operators out there going in, and you know, when making a phone call in and hey, they’re only load me, at 77. Five, they said they only called for this much and went through. So that side is working, you know, guys are out there doing, you know, taking care of us. And you know, and asking the questions and trying to get it on. And you know, and appreciate that side of it too. You know, it was good feedback, because there are certain orders that are, you know, they don’t want to put on but they have a lot and they’re finishing a lot, or they’re making a blend, and they’re only going to put so much on it because they’re allocating. But then, you know, there’s some of them that, you know, there’s a mountain of it out there, and you can get all you can get, you know, when you can get it all done and 20 loads as opposed to 22 loads, then the customer wants to see that.
Jeremy Kellett 21:24
Yeah, and another thing is, we’re at a little disadvantage, because we’re all owner operators. So we have a lot of different tractor weights, you know, Brian, or our own tractor, for whatever the reasons they want our competition. The majority of our competition is at their company, lightweight company trucks and trailers that look about half as good as our stuff looks and our owner operators are a little sure, for sure. And you’re fighting that too, because they can give a cheaper rate because they can haul 25 Ton, you know, with a company truck. Yeah, so you’re fighting that deal every time when you’re talking about regular porn, so that when you have the competition doing that, you know, we’re an owner operator position, that’s what we have. We pay by the mile is what we do. In the end, guys get aggravated, I know if they gotta go back, get more, we’re, you know, what’s just gonna have to happen at some point, we don’t want you to, you know, waste a half a day and all this kind of stuff. But we just need you to try and get a lot of them to do a great job. But we just need some I mean, that’s what they signed up to do was gross as close to 80,000 as you can get. I don’t mean to get negative. But my only negative comment is, what if i What if we paid them by the time on that load? Do you think they’d come out? There was 77,000 If we paid that owner operator, by the time we normally had to ask him to pay off? Yeah, yeah. Yeah, most times, they’re going over and bypassing the scales. I’m just kidding. I’m just, I just want to get my point across there. And with everything else you guys are saying I mean, that’s the business model we have paid by the mile. We just got to have a little more effort and we’re going to keep emphasizing it to get a little bit more, you know, weight on there without it being such a big inconvenience to somebody but it’s going to help us in the long run with customers, getting more freight, it’s going to help everybody it helps us be able to pay the loaded mile bonus the freight surcharge, I mean it just you know, and we leaving money on the table, right so
Shane Smith 23:45
one thing you mentioned that they talk about, you know, we’re don’t we’re not trying to cause an inconvenience we’re not wanting to pay go back and get more so the part that we’re talking about on the communication and the proactive side of it is up front and you know when as owner operator, you know your port when they come in you and you roll it on the scale of some of these places that we go into you pull in you hit scale give you a lightweight and then the question is how much do you want so right there is the time to hit it. Be proactive do the math my lightweight is this here’s ad give myself the cushy no to make sure you get it right and you know every location is different but some of these places can some places can load you within 50 to 100 pounds of what you’re asking some places you know some belts are old and archaic and you might be 1000 pounds swing either side or more in cases. So you know, every location is different but being proactive and being up front and you pull on the scale you get a lot of weight. How much do you want there Oakley? Question comes across the CB. That’s the point to get it because when you call back in and it’s 78 Then we’re going to be saying hey, Do we need to get some more, which is a
Jeremy Kellett 25:01
good segue into communication with your dispatcher? And, you know, that’s something that we’ve talked about for years. We have a no texting policy where dispatch is not supposed to be texting the owner operator. What does communication what’s the ideal communication lot for owner, operator and dispatcher?
Nick Crisco 25:28
Well, for years before the call came, you know, we were always in the old orientation room, there was a sign up there, check call seven to nine, and three to five, and that, that has certainly gotten more laxed, or to the Qualcomm and GPS, which is understandable. But I mean, ideally, and we had a meeting on this, around lunchtime today, because we had some issues today. You know, we still, I mean, ideally, you checked in the morning, and just because we can see where guys are doesn’t mean we know the whole story, what’s going on, obviously, what they’re dealing with, we still need to hear about nine o’clock in the morning. So ideally, from everybody. Or if you’re, you know, if you run to 1am or 2am, you know, you’re gonna be sleeping, leave the dispatcher a voicemail saying, Hey, this is my spot, I will probably sleep until you know, I’ll be ready to go from here, x. And then you know, throughout the day, as things change, delays, whatever traffic checking in again, and afternoons from three to five to four, somewhere in there just to it could be something as easy as it can be 22nd, you know, there’s, hey, I’m still on track, I’m looking at what’s tomorrow looking like, and the dispatch may not know, may just say, Hey, we’re looking at possibility of x, or this is what I’ve got planned on. If something goes wrong, please let me know tonight. Or do you think this is doable? If it is not doable on your side, then we can take them off the plan. That way? We’re not blindsided in the mornings, when you know, go to disbelief.
Jeremy Kellett 27:06
Do they look? Do they not look? And because they can look and see where that got them in pain debt, where the trachea doesn’t help any?
Shane Smith 27:14
It does help for quick answers. A lot of times Jeremy, no, you can’t go on that map and pull it up and see about a location. But the part that we don’t see, the great part of the phone call is it still doesn’t give, Hey, I’ve been running all night to get to this point where I’m at now, or, Hey, I’m at this point now. And traffic is something or you choke it and act right. You know, you don’t get all that and you can see a location, you can see where they are. But it doesn’t give you the whole back a lot either. And you can, that’s where it gets dangerous. Yeah, look at it go, Hey, man, we’re close, you know, take 20 minutes out. But that doesn’t. Are we 20 minutes out or we move in? Or? Yeah. Are we 20 minutes out? Wait, no, don’t have any hour break, you know, a lot of different factors that go in there that still that that phone call that communication that check in gives us such a better pulse on what’s happening.
Jeremy Kellett 28:08
How to manage the dispatcher. I mean, communicating with the owner, operator, I mean, yo, we we know, owner operator needs to call and tell us what’s going on. But we also got to I mean, I know we’ve had multiple conversations and meetings about the way a dispatcher talks to an owner operator,
Shane Smith 28:27
Again, talk about planning upfront, we try to do that in the beginning with your very jumpstart in orientation of what you know, what we’re looking for. What we’re expecting is that when dispatch will sit down with the owner operator, kinda cover everything at that point, you know, or reemphasize, and a lot of the same information that they just heard, and orientation that we eat, we communicate with our guys. And to get back to the answer that you’re looking at, you know, dispatch, we asked them to cover it with them every day, you know, every day, go through it, go through all the expats to expect low times, points, pickups, because it’s bad procedure. That’s what was the best procedure. That’s right, if that’s the behind the scene, and it’s a list, you know, it’s got a lot to cover, because there’s a lot of detail, there’s a lot of things that go into 3000 loads a week, you know, there’s a lot of steps because we talked about that big number and how good at looks. But that one load is if it can take a lot of if it’s your one load and that’s all load it matters. You know, it doesn’t matter about the other 2900 or whatever, you know, you’re averaging that week, you know, so, each load is important each one has has its own detail, you know that it goes through we get we get a lot of places that guys say the same place over and over multiple times in a week or multiple times. In a month, but then we have a lot of, we have a lot of one offs also where things change, you know, where we have to give because a scale is down, we have to go through a different gate or, you know, there’s always something changed. And it’s not what we normally do, assuming it’s the same old thing. And yeah, get in there.
Jeremy Kellett 30:19
Yeah, that can give us problems. If we’re not, not on top of the game, every time we go into these places, every time, you don’t have any specific scenarios of either good command, good communication or bad communication. So people could kind of weigh that out, or listeners who are role players can kind of see oh, this is okay, that’s bad. Okay, should be done like this, you gave me well,
Nick Crisco 30:44
this, I mean, not singular example, just kind of time to what we’re talking about earlier today, we just some situations that could have been avoided by communicate by communication between the owner operator and the dispatcher in the afternoon, the day prior, you know, and talking about the next day, you know, kind of what’s on the agenda, you know, because that what that does it, it does a lot of things, but it prevents service failures, prevents bad plans, you know, guys that can’t remember, we’ve got a plan on something that they can’t realistically do or legally do, when you figure in a 10 hour break.
Shane Smith 31:25
You say, and we get over ambitious, sometimes plan Amona once or twice,
Nick Crisco 31:30
it has happened before, you know, so, and it helps maximize their output their money, you know, if we know, the more communication we have on hey, I this is where I think I’m gonna make it this is where I’m gonna be starting from, as opposed to just kind of coming in and checking it out on the Qualcomm and saying, you know, just start shooting from the hip, you know, it helps generate more money for the guy out there on the road. And it helps us prevent service failures. And I think the afternoon check call is something that we’ve gotten away from a lot with Qualcomm and you know, it’s not all bad by any means. It’s just, there are times that things change throughout the day. And I think sometimes maybe you guys had the misconception where you can see me on Qualcomm, you know, we don’t
Jeremy Kellett 32:19
well, when you were dispatch, and you went down your guys at the end of every day, or Yeah,
Nick Crisco 32:24
they were highlighted, you know, that everybody had there you know, you highlight the guy. That’s when you knew that everything was taken care of till the next day, or I’d talked to him this afternoon. He knows the plan for tomorrow. He’s highlighted Yep. That was the real one.
Jeremy Kellett 32:43
The next one that’s not highlighted. Yeah, I need to get on. So on the phone, because Yeah, cuz
Nick Crisco 32:47
I know, I’ve talked to him today. He’s good to go to in the morning. Check them off. That’s right.
Jeremy Kellett 32:53
Yeah. Yeah, that way, you’re confident and what’s happening? Well, we just always, I mean, when anytime you’re communicating with people, it’s a constant battle to learn, especially over the phone, you know, of taking it the wrong way. But it’s a whole lot better than text. I mean, that can be taken so many wrong ways, or email or that kind of stuff. I mean, we actually had a guy here a week or two ago. The only way he wanted to communicate was by texting and emailing. And we had to terminate his lease, because it was like, No, we’ve got to talk to you, right? And he didn’t want to talk to us. Now. I cannot imagine somebody not wanting to talk to us. But you know, we said hey, man, well, you need to go somewhere that does it. Because we’re not doing that here. We got to talk to you and communicate with you. So we can all be on the same page. And can feel that you’re doing you know, right, we’re not pushing you, we want to be safe first out of the deal. Because I know despise takes that in consideration a lot. Are we doing things the safe way
Shane Smith 33:56
and it’s like Docker talked about or led into a little bit earlier but you lose all of that in firing it over on the Qualcomm Geotab if that thing is great. It beat the days of spelling out. No, you need to go to this location. This is it, give a phone number, write it down some of the places or with the names that we do spelling them out and going through it is nice to hit a button and click and get all that information in there. But that part of it is good, but the communication the verbal side of it is you know is when we’re talking to somebody about it is you know, there’s two people here you know, this is what we’re seeing is a dispatch can take this is what I want you to go do and you hear it on the other end as owner operator. Yeah, that’s no problem or, man, there’s no way I can get all that done, you know, whatever it is, you know, so that side of it is the communication has to be in it clarifies a whole lot of things. It eliminates a lot of problems. We’ll ask guys from time to time situations in your dump world. You know if we’re into scrap or ineffective, silly that’s Ty, you know, hey get us some pictures and send them to me. But we’re not. We’re not texting you. We’re not gonna send out anything to you via text. We’ll talk to you on the phone and ask you to send us pictures so we’ll have them and send them in to us.
Jeremy Kellett 35:22
Oakley Trucking is a 100% Owner Operator company. We specialize in Hopper, bottom and dump and pneumatic drivers. We provide the trailer free of charge and you provide the truck. We have a large customer base that reaches the whole United States as well as parts of Canada. The owner operators live anywhere from Texas to North Carolina to Pennsylvania to Wisconsin and everywhere in between and we get them home at the weekend. We take it seriously when you join Oakley trucking because we need you to be successful. Oakley offers great benefits and competitive mileage pay. So you know that when your wheels are turning, you’re generating money. No matter if you’re loaded or empty. We understand that you want to make a good living and that you make our living. We only take on independent contractors and to be honest with you, we are very particular on who we lease on, you must have a good driving record, good work history and clean dependable truck. So if you’re interested in Oakley trucking or just want some more information, you can go to Oakley trucking.com. Listen to our weekly podcast, the Oakley podcast and subscribe to our YouTube channel. You know, the last thing I want to cover real quick is customer service. And you know, we’re big on that we preach it in or in the recruiting department, I preach it when I go into orientation. I think you guys for sure preach it down there and dispatch to buy some ways we can improve on customer service. I mean, what do the customers what do when you sail yaki goalies customers you’re talking to in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and they’re telling you it looks good for the rest of the year, what do they expect from us,
Shane Smith 36:54
really, and truly the the customer service side of it, the simple of it is come back to the communicate but communicate, if it’s not going to happen, you know, the general, if dispatch gives a load to you, we’re going here we hit a timeframe, a lot of times it’s seven to three, sometimes, you know, hey, we got to be there at nine o’clock in order to get this on or get this off. But when we go through we dispatch to make sure when you see a problem on your end, that it ain’t going to make that window, when you say that the communication back to us to let us know, is awesome. Because we can at that point, you can notify a customer because we always use the example in our meetings to talk through. If you know, imagine yourself sitting there and you’re waiting on the UPS truck to bring whatever it is to you or the cable man is always our prime example. You know, they’re gonna be here in this window and you take off and you’re there and you’re waiting on this product. And lo and behold, that time comes and he’s not there, you know, when you’ve taken you’ve set a three hour window or four hour window to get it, it makes you read under the collar. And they didn’t even go and you didn’t make the call. Were so many times a simple phone call. If it’s not good news, it’s okay. If you communicate with a customer where they can move on or make other plans. It goes a long way in the customer service side. So they’re not sitting there waiting. They know, hey, this didn’t come in today. Or this is gonna be here at this time today. And they make plans to do something else besides sitting around there waiting on you, you know, waiting on Oakley, to show up with it, you know, and that’s one thing we preach. It’s one thing we constantly work on communicating with just to notify when something goes off the schedule and didn’t know at that time. We need the communication from the operator to the dispatch, and then dispatch has got to get it to the customer or the customer service representative. It’s handled in that account, you know, somebody needs to be informed so we can pass that information. You talked earlier about some of those examples of going through there. And I think we talked about some of that today.
Nick Crisco 39:21
We have a lot of customers that feel spoiled because they just send the orders. You know, they just said, Here’s next week’s order. Here’s 5x 2x. But it’s because they know what they’re getting. You know, and it’s because we do all of that. And you know what, if there is something go wrong, then we pick up the phone call, you know and let them know, you know because more times than not people are gonna understand that things happen as long as you let them know that may they might not be happy about it, but at least They know that you’re trying to do right and trying to let them know that there is a problem, rather than just sweeping it under the rug and hope nobody notices, you know, we’ve never operated that way. And people can sense that, you know. So that goes right back to the communication to all that. I mean, that’s what you hear when you go out and visit the customers face to face, you know, that they, I mean, Oakley, there’s a number of reasons, our equipment, like he touched on earlier, is top notch. There’s a lot that goes into who’s hired on you know, and we’re not the cheapest anymore, they hire us, because they want a good product, and they know what they’re getting with us. You know, so they’ve, we’ve even, we were told other days, and they took up bids, I say, we automatically throw the lowest one out. Because we know that ain’t ever gonna happen. You know. So I mean, that goes back into trickle down into what we pay and, and the weight, and all that, you know, because we are able to get a lot of business from being able to provide that service and having guys that are dependable, and good communication.
Shane Smith 41:07
And every one of those things equals service on that side of it. And the residual of that is when you provide it, you’re hauling the weights you’re showing up there. You know, great, lots of good comments for okra, off owner operators that are getting that equipment looks good, you know, best looking trucks out here on the road. And, you know, we get so many good look and appearance comments for the operator coming into those facilities. No clean, good attitude coming in. Main.
Jeremy Kellett 41:41
So you’re telling me, customer service worked, it worked good customer service works, really,
Shane Smith 41:48
It works. I will say if we had to produce every bit of it. But I’ll talk for myself, if I had to produce every bit of it on that side, I would probably come a little short. But what all those pieces that go along there every day that comes back, it creates it to where you take care of a customer, you do it and they send it to you to do it again. And to do it again. And to do it again. Yeah, and that’s what you want. Yeah, taking care of it. That feels good to get some good customer service, man.
Jeremy Kellett 42:17
They like it. Anything else you guys like to add? For like we did good. I covered a lot of stuff. I guess the main thing, you know, to finish up here is a catch ourselves a lot of times talking about certain, you know, bad instances that happen and we seem to amplify those customers seem to amplify those safety game profiles, that stuff that happens but the majority of Oakley owner operators does everything right, the majority of the owner operators here, they haul the weight, they communicate with dispatch, they dark good with customers, because though, hey, though, call me and ratting out a guy that is not doing right with customers, you know, either appearance, truck trailer, not sweeping it out. Breaking line, whatever it is, I mean, I have guys call me and say This guy is not representing us well, because that means a lot to me, because the majority of our guys are proud. You are proud of our standards and are proud to work at a company that means that you want to provide good customer service. So I think you know, when we say these things to a lot of people whether it’s appearance or hauling weight or customer service, I mean, you know, we’re talking to a small percentage of the owner operator Oakley fleet, because a majority of them do things. I mean, to the tee and even above and beyond what we can do, you know, we get so many comments from customers, on how people take care of them and do things Ron and those ones that do that are the ones that need praising
Shane Smith 44:01
you bet they make it for us every day. And you know and those guys that you talk about that do call because they know when you have bought in and they know when you give that service and you get it again. And you know when if somebody’s not then I might not get that loan because he didn’t do it the way that they wanted you know, and it really is what we talk about on what we do it is a small percentage of these loans that go through this not meant to pick is not meant to harp but you know we talk about we strive to be the best and to be the best out there. And the owner operators that we have got us there you Elon are not all these folks in this office. I mean everybody has to do a part. But the people out there in front of so many customers that we do we never say it’s every one of the owner operators is see him. That’s the face of Oakley truck and that takes care of who they say And
Jeremy Kellett 45:00
they’ve made it to where you can go up to Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, wherever and you sit in front of that customer and you’re confident. What you’re selling is gonna watch roll into that drive and walk into that.
Nick Crisco 45:13
Yeah, that’s a good feeling to be on the other side of that. To sell bad products. Yeah, lovely, horrible. So now so yeah, that’s exactly right. I mean, we tend to touch on the mishaps, but it is just because, I mean, if you don’t address it, what are you doing, you know, but so much more good than bad goes on, you know, so it’s not meant to come across that way. But it’s just an improvement. The dispatch procedure was lucky. mentioned earlier. It’s always an ongoing joke. There were a lot of mistakes that invented those things. Yeah. You know, so that’s constant coaching. To try to just avoid mistakes we’ve made in the past.
Shane Smith 46:00
What knowledge just adds, does it come from failures, right? Yeah, Rasta, come about.
Jeremy Kellett 46:07
Well, great, guys. I appreciate y’all hanging with me. So in the afternoon. I know you gotta get down. I wrap things up more on Friday afternoons, and it’s good. But hey, good information. I think it’s authentic information from y’all that you can tell your sincerity of preaching it and want to be, you know, working with everybody. So it’s great, man. So thanks for coming up here.
Nick Crisco 46:26
Yes sir. Thanks for having us.
Jeremy Kellett 46:28
Appreciate everybody out there listening to us on the Oakley podcast. You know, it’s trying to bring you some good stuff every week. Best we can give you information for you to be successful as an owner operator, here at Oakley. So, thanks for listening. Be sure to check us out on all the platforms just search the Oakley podcast, you can go to YouTube. Leave a comment. Let me know what you put together in your mind and what you want to hear from us. We appreciate you once again and we’ll talk to you next week. Thanks for listening to this episode with Oakley podcast, trucking, business and family. If you enjoyed this episode, be sure to rate or review the show in the podcast platform of your choice and share it with a friend. We love hearing from our audience. So if you’ve got a question, comment or just want to say hello, head over to our website, the Oakley podcast.com and click the leave a comment button. We’ll get you a response soon and may even share some of the best ones here on the show. We’ll be back with a fresh episode very soon. Thanks for listening.