Delivery drivers transfer goods from areas of production to personal homes and businesses. Duties and training vary depending on employer. No formal education is required for the job, but drivers, of course, need a driver's license and a clean driving record. The job may include filling out papers, loading and unloading goods, and talking with customers. Hours can be long, and the job may be physically taxing.
Delivery Driver Job Description
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) defines drivers of light or delivery services as those who drive a truck or van weighing less than 26,000 pounds. They work for a variety of businesses and deliver all types of goods and merchandise, from linens, uniforms and food to cash and furniture. Some drive an established route, while others drive to different locations every day.
Approximately 826,510 light truck and delivery services drivers were employed in 2015. Employment of these drivers was predicted to grow 4% from 2012-22, which is slower than the average for all occupations, because GPS technology is making the drivers more efficient, eliminating the need for additional hires.
Hours can vary, depending on the type of employer. Drivers who work for bakeries or grocery stores often have to report to work early in the morning. It is not uncommon for delivery drivers to work 50 or more hours per week. The median wage per hour of delivery drivers was $14.35 as of May 2015, according to the BLS.
The most important duty of delivery drivers is to drive safely to their destination. Drivers are also often expected to help with the loading and unloading of their products, keep logs of their activities and make sure their vehicles are maintained in good working order. Package delivery service drivers and those whose job involves sales often have to accept payment for services and handle other paperwork related to the delivery. Some may be responsible for obtaining new customers along a delivery route.
Delivery drivers often receive on-the-job training, covering company products and policies, the preparation of delivery forms and the operation and loading of the vehicle. Part of the training may involve riding with experienced drivers. Those who drive armored vehicles may have to obtain a concealed weapons permit. Drivers required to use location or automatic routing software are given instruction in this technology.
The position requires good eyesight, hearing and physical condition. Because delivery drivers often deal with customers, employers look for applicants with initiative, who are neat, well spoken, courteous and work well with little supervision. A satisfactory driving record is usually required.